Over 100 people gathered beside the busy highway between Lahaina and Ka`anapali, the center of Maui's tourism. Residents and tourists, including many Japanese nationals, visited the educational booths where information on sovereignty and independence was available. Many supportive honks came from cars driving past.
All islands sent representatives to the event in support of Maui's action. Rowena Akana from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, which gains its funding from "ceded land" revenue, was a guest speaker.
Read more about the illegality of the U.S. annexation of Hawaii and the true status of "ceded" lands below...
The following clauses from United States Public Law 103-150 (the Apology Resolution, Nov. 23, 1993) describe the origin of the so-called "ceded" lands:
Whereas, through the Newlands Resolution, the self-declared Republic of Hawaii ceded sovereignty over the Hawaiian Islands to the United States;No consent and no compensation = didn't ask, didn't pay = STOLE!
Whereas, the Republic of Hawaii also ceded 1,800,000 acres of crown, government and public lands of the Kingdom of Hawaii, without the consent of or compensation to the Native Hawaiian people of Hawaii or their sovereign government
There was never a legal cession, and there is really no such thing as "ceded lands." No land or sovereignty of Hawai`i was ever legally ceded to the United States.
A letter dated March 12, 1898, the year of annexation, from United States Senator Caffrey stated:
"The present government of Hawaii, which undertakes to cede territory to the United States, has no title to the island, for the reason that their title is derived from the revolution instigated and carried to consumation by the United States Minister, Mr. Stevens. The revolutionists are not the representatives of the wishes of the people of Hawaii, and can convey no title to the sovereignty of territory, the control of which they have usurped."Knowingly accepting hot goods is just as criminal as stealing in the first place.
Only a treaty can legally affect annexation of territory, and no treaty was ever signed for Hawai`i. The United States Congress, in it's military eagerness in the midst of the Spanish-American War, and as an extension of the Manifest Destiny philosophy beyond the American Continent, passed a unilateral joint resolution of annexation and stole Hawai`i, in blatant violation of the U.S. Constitution and international principles and laws.
This is the basis of the state of Hawai`i's claim to these lands, and the United States' claim to the entire archipelago. (For information on why the statehood process was invalid, see Is Hawaii Really a State of the Union?.) These so-called "ceded" lands have for decades been leased to various non-Hawaiian and foreign entities with virtually no benefit to the Native Hawaiian People.
In 1978 the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) was created in a state Constitutional Convention, to receive 20% of revenues from ceded lands to benefit the Native Hawaiians. OHA has managed to provide some beneficial programs for the Hawaiian People, but has also been widely criticized for political corruption and mismanagement of funds.
But these lands do not belong to the de facto state in the first place, they belong to the Hawaiian national population, and the further disenfrachisement of their birthright is just further perpetuation of the injustices which are acknowledged in the Apology Resolution, traced all the way back to the illegal 1893 overthrow and 1898 annexation.
As Professor Francis A. Boyle stated in his December 1993 testimony interpreting the meaning of the Apology:
"Who's land is it? Well, from what Congress seems to be saying, it's the land of the Native Hawaiians. The Native Hawaiian people still have sovereignty... You can't trespass on your own land. The trespassers then become the State of Hawai`i, and the land developers, and the golf courses, and the resorts. You are simply the Native Hawaiians asserting your rights under international law... this reversal of positions, between who is the criminal and who is the victim, who is asserting their rights and who is violating their rights, has been effectively conceded by Congress."
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