Hawaiians protest statehood and push for freedom
HONOLULU (KHNL) - Statehood united Hawaii with the rest of the country. But it has also divided many of our island residents for five decades.
Many Hawaiians did not want to become a part of the United States 50 years ago. They fought against it then, and that fight continues today.
Protestors marched with a mission to the Hawaii Convention Center.
Yelling slogans, and chanting in Hawaiian, hundreds made their voices heard, as they called for an end to statehood.
"We didn't want to be part of the United States and yet we are," said Lynette Cruz, with the Hawaiian Independence Alliance.
Among the shouting for independence for our islands, there were also symbolic gestures these protestors took to make their point. Cutting out the 50th star from the American flag. Knocking down a symbol of Uncle Sam's hold on countries around the pacific.
They also highlighted, what they call 'the third major crime' committed against the Hawaiian people.
"Statehood was a crime, it was the third crime. First, crime overthrow, for which the US government apologized. Second came the annexation of Hawaii. Third is statehood," said Kekuni Blaisdell, a Hawaiian Activist.
While many were fired up for Friday's protest, organizers say in order for their efforts to be successful, they must continue to push just as hard for independence in years to come.
It's a battle Native Hawaiians have been fighting for the past 50 years. And it's one they plan to keep on fighting until Hawaii is free from US rule.
"The US and the State of Hawaii has to get ready for change. We're not going to back off until its fixed," added Cruz.