Hawaiians Unite

"A ia hoi, nani ka maika'i a me ka oluolu, O ka noho lokahi pu ana o na hoahanau!" "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!" Psalm 133:1

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Supreme Court justices to confer as early as Friday April 13 - please pule!

Aloha kakou,

Following is a message from Dee Jay Mailer, CEO of the Kamehameha Schools. She indicates that the Supreme Court justices will likely meet on Friday April 13 to decide whether or not to hear John Doe's petition this fall.

Please join me for times of personal and corporate pule between now and then. Together let's beseech Ke Akua to help the Supreme Court justices see the truth.

For those of you in SoCal, please meet me at Huntington Beach pier flagpole (just to the right of the pier), at 9am on Saturday April 7 so we can pule in advance of the Supreme Court justices' meeting in this case. E-mail me at Noelani@HawaiiansUnite.com for more information.

Together with you,

----- Original Message -----
From: CEO Message
To: CEO Message
Sent: Thursday, March 29, 2007 3:53 PM
Subject: Supreme Court to Discuss Review of Doe v. KS in April
Aloha kakou! It was just a short while ago that I wrote to you, letting you know that John Doe was requesting a hearing with the Supreme Court and that we had filed our opposition to his request. As we predicted, he has filed his response to our opposition and a date has been set for the Supreme Court to consider whether or not to hear our case. According to our latest information, the Supreme Court may meet to consider this as early as Friday, April 13. If our case is discussed on April 13, the Court is likely to decide on whether to grant Doe’s appeal by Monday, April 16.

We have strongly asserted that this case does not warrant any further consideration. The Federal District Court in Honolulu found in our favor, as did a majority of the judges at the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. If the Supreme Court agrees with us, that this case does not warrant further review, then the Doe lawsuit will be pau. If, instead, the Supreme Court justices decide they do want to hear this case, it will mean several more months of legal filings and arguments, with a hearing before the Court as early as the Fall of this year. If the Court decides to hear our case, we are fully prepared to decisively argue for our rights to serve our Princess's express wishes.

It bears repeating - we have made very strong arguments against having the Supreme Court hear any further appeals from Doe’s attorneys. This case does not raise issues of national importance. There is simply no other school in the country like Kamehameha: founded by a Princess in her sovereign homeland, who bequeathed her private wealth to provide an educational remedy for the ongoing socioeconomic disadvantages suffered by her native people. Furthermore, this lawsuit involves a federal statute, enacted by Congress to protect freed slaves from being locked out of commerce. This is the same Congress that has repeatedly recognized and supported our mission. Thus we believe Congress never intended for this statute to stop our Schools from serving our people, according to our Princess's will. There is no other situation in the United States for which the court’s current ruling in this case establishes a precedent, and we believe that the justices will consider this as they decide which cases from across the entire nation they will review this Fall.

As confident as we may be in our ability to defend our admissions policy, we are aware that we do not defend alone. We know you stand with us and that we need the strength and guidance of a much higher power to resolve this matter with finality. Mahalo for your continuing prayers, care and support as we direct our thoughts and energy toward those who will make these important decisions. As always, you bolster our strength and stand as a strong symbol of our commitment to continue to serve our people in the way our founder wished.

I mua Kamehameha!

Dee Jay Mailer

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Kamehameha Schools Opposes Request For Supreme Court Review

----- Original Message -----
From: DeeJay Mailer
To: Kamehameha 'ohana
Sent: Friday, March 16, 2007 4:47 PM

Aloha kakou! Kamehameha Schools today filed a legal brief with the U.S. Supreme Court opposing a plaintiff’s request for a Supreme Court review of last December’s 9th Circuit Court en banc ruling, which upheld our preference policy. Our brief, which is available on our website, http://www.ksbe.edu/, opposes the “petition for writ of certiorari” filed by John Doe and his attorney earlier this month. I encourage you to read it.

When a review is requested of the Supreme Court, they evaluate the case with 2 important considerations: 1) whether the decision by the circuit court is in conflict with other court decisions and 2) whether the decision has national importance. Our legal team has presented a strong argument in opposition to Doe’s request, basing our opposition on the absence of these two considerations. To quote from the brief:

“No constitutional issue is presented. The decision neither conflicts with any decision of this Court nor presents any important question that warrants this Court’s attention.” (p. 2)

“Nothing in this ruling extends to any circumstance beyond the Kamehameha Schools, nor the unique statutory setting of congressional programs directed at remedying the damage done to Native Hawaiians by the overthrow of their kingdom and near destruction of their culture.” (p 24)

“Nowhere in the United States does there exist another school like Kamehameha Schools, which is entirely private and not-for profit, and which carries out a remedial educational mission for the benefit of the children of an indigenous people with whom Congress has a special trust and political relationship.” (p. 24)

The opposition brief makes several points in response to Doe’s assertions:

· No “absolute bar.” John Doe claims that because of the limited space in our campus programs, our preference policy amounts to “an absolute bar” for non-Hawaiians. In Nov. 2003, Federal District Judge Alan Kay ruled that no absolute bar exists, because non-Hawaiians are admitted to Kamehameha Schools programs when places are available, as happens frequently in our off-campus programs. He also affirmed that the Trustees continually review the preference policy in light of the demand for enrollment on our campuses and the ever present need to remedy disadvantage which still exists today.
· No conflict with Rice vs. Cayetano. John Doe claims that the 9th Circuit Court ruling conflicts with the ruling in Rice vs. Cayetano in 2000, in which the court opened voting for OHA elections to non-Hawaiians. In that case, the court was considering voting rights in a statewide public election. We are an entirely privately-funded school, not a public institution; we receive no federal money. Our circumstances, who we are and how we are funded, are very different.
· Congress has supported remedial programs such as ours. Because we are being challenged under a federal statute and not the constitution, the intent and actions of Congress are very important. Congress has repeatedly supported funding remedial measures aimed exclusively at Native Hawaiians. There are more than 85 acts that reflect this. That indicates that Congress never intended for Chapter 1981 (the federal statute in this case) to be used to exclude a remedial program such as ours.
· Political status of Hawaiians is being actively debated in Congress Doe has raised the issue of whether Hawaiians have a special political status with the U.S.. As Congress may soon debate this issue, via the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act (the Akaka Bill), judicial intervention is unwarranted while this issue is undergoing active debate in the Congress.

John Doe has ten days to respond to our brief. We expect to receive an answer from the Supreme Court in the next several weeks.

As always, our duty to uphold the wishes of our founder and your steadfast support has been our core strength. As we continue this important battle, we will keep Pauahi’s vision for her people in our hearts and your efforts on behalf of our community in our minds.

I Mua Kamehameha!

Dee Jay Mailer
Chief Executive Officer

See our filing at: http://www.ksbe.edu/pdf/writresponse.pdf

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Letter to the Editor re "USA Today" cover story


"Obligations To Hawaiians Are Far From Being 'Perks' "

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

"USA Today" Cover Story - March 7, 2007


"Racial Tensions Are Simmering In Hawai'i's Melting Pot"

Sunday, March 04, 2007

From my heart...a response to John Doe's Petition to the U.S. Supreme Court

Aloha pumehana kakou,

I write with a heavy heart this evening. I'm sure you know that John Doe's attorneys filed their petition with the U.S. Supreme Court in the case against Princess Pauahi's estate. I have spent two days in deep prayer - unsure of how to respond to something so misleading and hurtful (albeit expected). Then this morning before taking communion with my church 'ohana, Ke Akua told me once again to forgive John Doe's family and their attorneys, and others who have set themselves against the preservation of our people. Indeed, forgiveness is the key that unlocks His forgiveness of our own wrongs committed against others, and makes possible the kind of faith that Jesus said can even move mountains. I urge you to join me in asking Ke Akua to give us HIS aloha and forgiveness in the face of this ongoing legal battle.

What about this petition? They have attempted to tell the Supreme Court that the primary issue in this case is "race discrimination." In this attempt, they've engaged in misrepresentations, revisions of history and wrongful application of laws which were (ironically) intended to protect America's marginalized - and all in the name of their pursuit of a color-blind America. It sounds lofty ("color blind" - who wouldn't stand up and say "Amen!"?) Of all people in the islands, Native Hawaiians understand the importance of equal protection, and the danger of failing to bring everyone, regardless of the color of their skin, into full participation in society. We have paid the price for Western society's failure to include us for too many years.

The fundamental flaw in their legal reasoning, though-- the case law and statutes they seek to apply -- is that these laws have nothing to do with aboriginal peoples like na kanaka maoli (Native Hawaiians), Native Alaskans, or Native American Indians. Rather, the laws which apply are those relating to treaties between sovereign nations, and those regarding the rectification of wrongs committed against the original inhabitants of land now encompassed by the United States of America. They do not apply to the private trust of a monarch, set aside for her peoples' preservation, and established when we were yet a sovereign nation. The Ninth Circuit Court ruling will not harm any other school or student in America because there is no other state whose very history hinges on the overthrow of a sovereign monarchy.

But more than the deficits in their legal reasoning, John Doe's attorneys fail to appreciate the moral implications of their tenacious pursuit of a ruling in their favor: how can they continue to pursue the private gift of a beloved Princess whose sole purpose was PONO - namely to uplift our people from the cycles of poverty, disease and other societal ills thrust on us by Western society? This kind of blind pursuit of equal protection of the laws at any cost has too high a cost for na kanaka maoli, the aboriginal people of Hawai'i. If Kamehameha Schools loses its primary tool (i.e., the admissions preference) to ensure it is serving Princess Pauahi's intended beneficiaries, then those beneficiaries lose. And if we fail to survive as the host people of the islands, everyone loses. Including the John Doe's.

But I have faith that Ke Akua will provoke circumstances to help us prevail in the end - that He will use this to make us stronger as a people - stronger in lokahi, stronger in character, and stronger in faith. Join me in praying for the Kamehameha Schools legal team, especially this month as they respond to the petition within the required 3o-day timeframe. Pray that the Supreme Court justices, when they have both John Doe's petition and Kamehameha Schools' response in their hands, will say "'A'ole no, John Doe!" Pray with me that they will understand this case has nothing to do with race, and everything to do with remedy (i.e., making pono what was done to the aboriginal people of Hawai'i in the wrongful overthrow of our government against our will.)

And pray that until the day this case is pau, we will never lose hope that Ke Akua can, and will, move this mountain.

Together with you for His glory and our Princess' legacy,

("I will lift up mine eyes to the mountains, from whence cometh my help. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps His children shall neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; He shall preserve your soul. The Lord shall preserve your going out and coming in, from this time forth, and even forevermore." Psalm 121)