Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Hawaii: 50 States, 49 States, 48 States

There is a movement afoot in our 50th State to withdraw from the Union. While the group leading the charge is a very small minority it does bring some thoughts to mind. See:

The American Civil War was fought over the issue of State's Rights and the right of a state to remove itself from requirements outlined in the laws of the United States. The South Carolina State government demanded that it should have the right to ignore federal laws it felt were in conflict with its own state laws. This was not the first attempt by South Carolina to remove itself from federal compliance as during the 1830s a Southern President, Andrew Jackson, had to threaten use of federal troops if South Carolina did not withdraw its attempt to nullify federal custom duties. As we all know this merely postponed a wider conflict by 20 years and was resolved at the cost of billions of dollars and 600,000 american lives. What is interesting is that an earlier uprising against the earliest federal taxes was defeated in person by General Washington's (another southerner) army. The revolt was known as the Whiskey Rebellion.

So what is this all about in Hawaii? Our 50th State receives billions of dollars in federal aid from the national treasury. So money can not be an issue. A very high percentage of Hawaiians dip into the tax trough as either government or military retirees, current government workers, or subsidized welfare enrollees. The native islanders (one drop of blood and you are Hawaiian) have received numerous considerations both financial and political to ensure the survival of the Hawaiian heritage and culture. So, what could these separatists really want?

Hawaii belongs to everyone.....all of us....within the 50 States. That was the deal back in 1959, fifty years ago this year. In my opinion, backed up by a Civil War, you just can't have it both ways. Independence means independence and you are on your own. Is that what the crazy Hawaiian minority really wants? Back to the good ole days when the government of Hawaii were controlled by a few rich speculators and native leaders willing to sell their people for a few shiny trinkets. As a Native American I can attest to the fact that with all of the bad and evil dealings forced upon my people for 500 years the one winning effect is that under this nation's Constitution and its laws we are all finally recognized as being Americans and equal. This recognition however brings with it certain rights and certain obligations.

We are always quick to complain about our rights and what is owed to us......but what about our obligations?

If something in Hawaii is not right it can be changed. While not easily done, there is a way, long and hard as it may be politically. Cutting out the star from the 50 star flag is not the answer. Demanding rights not shared by others in not the right course. Millions of people on this planet would gladly trade places with anyone wanting out of this precious union. I am not saying "love it or leave it". I am saying don't destroy it. Build upon this nation's solid foundation established over 200 years ago. Perhaps we in the lower 48 States have been too generous in allowing distant islands into our Union. If they leave we will need to send them a bill for services rendered.

Hey, it is not just the blue liberal State of Hawaii but the red conservative State of Alaska that from time to time raises the separation issue while still holding out their hands for federal dollars. Time to tell our youngest States to grow up and take responsibility. Perhaps it is best not to bite the hand that feeds you.

May our flag forever wave over a land of the brave and a land of the free.

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