Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

July 19, 2019

Police Now Arresting Elder Protectors on Mauna Kea in Hawaii

Aunty Maxine, posted by Tammy.

Aunty Geenie, 85, retired nurse and professor, posted by Hilarie

Photo by Mahealani Richardson

Update on Friday: Four of the 34 Kupunas arrested on Wednesday were transported by ambulances to hospitals at their request.

Around the world, hearts broke as 33 Kupuna elders were arrested defending Mauna Kea on Wednesday. Ofelia Rivas, Tohono O'odham on the southern border said, "We will continue to send them prayers and we stand with them and Mother Earth. O'odham lands preparing for upcoming ceremonies. Many blessings to our sisters and brothers standing strong. We continue to stand with you." Ofelia Rivas, O'odham VOICE Against the WALL.

Screenshots below by Censored News
from live TV

Police Now Arresting Elder Protectors on Mauna Kea

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
July 17, 2019
Updated July 18

Kupuna elders on the frontline of the road blockade on Mauna Kea were just arrested. Police are putting elders in their wheelchairs in a police van. As they do, others are taking their place on the road barricade, to block construction crews to the telescope observatory.
After arresting Kupuna elders, police said everyone on the road will be arrested, at 11:45 am in Hawaii  (4:45 pm Central time.)
ABC News reports: "Police arrested elderly protesters, some using wheelchairs and canes, as they blocked a road Wednesday to Hawaii's highest peak to try to stop construction of a giant telescope on land some Native Hawaiians consider sacred. Protest leader Kealoha Pisciotta told The Associated Press that hundreds of demonstrators moved aside to allow police to take away about 30 elders, called kupuna in Hawaiian, who were prepared to be arrested. "They're taking our kupuna," Pisciotta said, sobbing. Around her, people sang "Hawaii Aloha."
Ku'uipo Freitas said late Wednesday, "Lā 6: About today... kupuna were arrested and given a citation and were let go. Following the end of DLNR’s tries with the kupuna, new law enforcement came in and guess who held the line down, WAHINE! All est. 90 of us locking arms for what felt like 2.5 hours. Police lined both sides of the road as we held steady. They even switched out shifts while we stood the whole time. It ain’t over. This is just the beginning. While the live-streams went on, outer islands shutdown highways, and airports at the same time, sending a damn message to the government. We ain’t letting TMT be built on Maunakea."

Photo KITV

On Thursday morning, KITV reports, "The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) says 33 kupuna were arrested Wednesday morning including long-time activist Walter Ritte, and cultural treasure Pualani Kanakaole Kanahele. It was an emotional scene on the mountain, sometimes near silent while police arrested demonstrators blocking Mauna Kea access road."
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs released a statement regarding the arrest of kūpuna on Maunakea.
"Uē ka lani, naue ka honua: The heavens weep, the ground shakes.
The Native Hawaiian community weeps today. To see some of our most respected kūpuna, advocates and ʻohana get arrested for voicing the same concerns our community has expressed for decades over the state’s mismanagement of Maunakea brings a kaumaha to our hearts that is unbearable. Regardless of your position on TMT, we must all agree with Gov. Ige’s 2015 statement that the state has “failed” Maunakea.
OHA will continue to proceed with our lawsuit against the state and UH for their mismanagement of Maunakea. We continue to call for the state and UH to be held accountable as fiduciaries for our trust resources, and we demand that a new management structure is immediately installed for Maunakea."

Censored News screenshots from live TV.

Above elders being arrested. Below: now awaiting arrest at the blockade. Screenshots from live TV by Censored News.
Aerial view posted online
"Just doing your job" is no excuse for police arresting elderly Kupuna on Manua Kea. 
There is no job worth bringing this shame and disgrace on you and your family. It was no excuse for the Nazis who took women and children to the gas chambers, and said they were "just doing their job." It was a crime then, and it is a crime against humanity now. 
During the Nuremberg Trials, those "just following orders," were found to have committed  crimes.  "These trials, under the London Charter of the International Military Tribunal that set them up, established that the defense of superior orders was no longer enough to escape punishment .."
Statement by Censored News

Watch Wednesday's live coverage below
Hawaii News Now

Also watch live now 
Nā Leo TV

Photos Road Barricade below on Monday


Unknown said...

Stand strong, my prayers are with you. Minnesota

Unknown said...

Once again the Natives of this country are being stripped of their sacred heritage, the Natives have proved to be good stewards of the lands of this great nation. Our government has not, I stand with the Natives North, South East And West of our great nation.

mscoralrose said...

Many thanks to those that sacrifice their time, energy, and even their freedom with the goal of protecting our planet. Whatever the outcome, your actions are appreciated.