1 year ago today, the Hawaiian people galvanised strongly to stand to protect Mauna Kea. On August 2 Melbourne For Mauna
Kea gathering was organised by Tiffany Noelani Le Nevez. Present in the gathering were Pacific Islanders, Indigenous Australians & Non-indigenous Australians.
Events such as this, to be a voice to stand for pono are vital for the continuation of sacred traditions as well as the simple fact of human rights.
Something I didn’t share at the time was that Kaleo & I had both been hit very hard with something that flattened both of us for 2 weeks.
For a couple of people who never get sick, this was a challenging, new experience. Whilst we were on the ‘other side of it’ & way past being ‘infectious’ by the time of the rally, we were both only firing on about 1 cylinder. Neither of us had had the capacity to learn a particular oli for the event. Learning oli is something that is usually easy for both of us, however this time neither of us could retain it.
Regardless, we had made a commitment to attend & support as well as perform some mele with Aloha UkeStars . https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MaGxgYIf85U&t=3s
The reason I’m sharing this part of the story, is that this rally was that important to us that we showed up. We showed up in the fullness of our alohamana. That was never in doubt. No-one, apart from one of our fellow uke players knew how we were physically feeling.
It wasn’t about us, it was about being a voice for pono, for what’s right, for taking a stand.
I have heard over my many years, many excuses as to ‘why not’, ‘leave it to others’, stories of mea mea mea. So many missed opportunities when the FUDS (fear, uncertainty, doubt, stress …or other acronym words of your choice) takes over, compromising personal values & ethics to accommodate others, of getting outside the comfort & complacency zone. IF NOT NOW, WHEN?? It’s time to move past those FUDS & Many Excuses. it’s time to stand up for your Freedom of Speech & Human Rights, whatever that means for you.
Bishop Desmond Tutu said: “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality.”
We must all speak up with aloha, to the elephant for the mouse & remove it’s foot from it’s tail. Whether the metaphoric elephant is unaware it is standing on the mouses tail, or is doing so intentionally, it is our kuleana, our responsibility to speak up.
So, whenever there is an opportunity for you to be a voice for pono, for sacred rights, YOUR human rights, the human rights of others, animal rights, environmental rights, for anything that is important to you…… show up & stand up & be a voice.
Ku Kia’i Mauna