Facts about queen's overthrow do matter

The Maui News
Letters to the Editor
Friday, January 23, 2004

In his Jan. 17 letter, Thurston Twigg-Smith mentions that "Key Hawaiian activists mislead everyone about the facts of the overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom." I happen to be one of those activists.

In the early 1970s, we conducted intensive research in the National Archives in Washington, D.C., and the facts that we discovered were shocking.

For the last 100 years or so, our education system failed miserably to educate us on how the United States assisted Mr. Twigg-Smith's grandfather and other decedents of the missionaries to manipulate government officials working for the kingdom and members of the U.S. Congress to discredit Queen Lili'uokalani. A major island newspaper owned by Twigg-Smith's grandfather was used to discredit the Hawaiian monarch and turn public sentiment against the queen.

The facts that we found and her book, "Hawaii's Story by Hawaii's Queen," shows that members of the provisional government, whom the queen called na kanaka aihue (men of deceit), conspired against her when they realized that they could not manipulate her as they did her brother.

Mr. Twigg-Smith's idea of making Hawaii a better place for all is by ending the Hawaiian Home Lands, which put Hawaiians back on their lands, and stopping the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and other programs that help to perpetuate Hawaiian culture.

Hawaiians must have self determination - in whatever form it takes - and only then can our sacred and fragile culture be preserved for future generations to enjoy.

Charles Kauluwehi Maxwell

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Ho`iho`i Mai