Friday, September 09, 2016


When - Saturday, September 10, 2016 10 AM – 1 PM
Where - Waikiki Beach, Kalakaua Ave. (Duke Kahanamoku statue)

Justice for Native Peoples (JNP) is a group of Native Hawaiians and concerned Hawai`i residents who are taking to the streets on Saturday, September 10, 2016 from 10 AM to 1 PM to stand in solidarity with the Dakota and Lakota peoples of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. Along with the hundreds of other Native Tribes and thousands of supporters, we oppose the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL).

In recent days, the peaceful protestors have been attacked by private security personnel hired by the Texas based DAPL owners. Images of attack dogs and pepper spray being used against the protestors, who include elders and children, have been documented by independent and corporate news agencies.

The proposed 1,168- mile long pipeline would carry 450,000 barrels of crude oil daily from North Dakota to Illinois, threatening over 200 water ways, most notably the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, as well as the integrity of the region’s wildlife and land. The project has already bulldozed a large, well-known Native burial site, and is expected to desecrate more burials and sacred sites and using the power of eminent domain to steal lands.

For Native Hawaiians, the Standing Rock resistance, whose refrain is “Water is Life,” is significant, coming just one year after the Mauna Kea protests. Desecration of Hawaiian sacred sites and threats to fresh water sources from billion dollar projects like the Thirty- Meter Telescope (TMT), endear the Standing Rock protestors to the Hawaiian people. However, Hawaiian solidarity with them goes beyond cultural and environmental issues.

Native Hawaiian activist and a spokesperson for JNP, Healani Sonoda-Pale, said, “Native resistance is an ongoing, daily, centuries long process. Like our brothers and sisters on the continent, we Hawaiians are engaged in fighting to secure our rights to self- determination, something the Obama Administration is attempting to snuff out.”

Sonoda-Pale, alongside many individuals and Hawaiian groups, has been outspoken against the Obama Administration’s Department of Interior (DOI) proposed Rule. The DOI Rule process was invented by Obama’s Administration to circumvent the need for Congressional approval, thereby setting up Mr. Obama’s stated plans to Executive Order a quasi-federal recognition of the Hawaiian people. If enacted, these “changes” would effectively make Hawaiians into a Native American tribe.

“If Obama and his DOI force federal recognition down our throats, the 2 million acres of so-called ‘ceded lands’ would come under the control of the DOI,” said Sonoda-Pale. 

“That agency has already ignored the will of the Hawaiian people, who spoke out clearly against federal recognition during DOI hearings 2-years ago.” She went on to say, “Also, the DOI’s Bureau of Indian Affairs already mismanages 55 million acres held in trust for Native owners such as the Dakota and Lakota peoples. Now they want to be allowed to mis-manage the lands and assets of the Hawaiian people?”