Lily Diamond in Facebook, Re: TOURISTS COMING TO HAWAII...LONG READ BUT TOTALLY RIGHT ON THE MONEY!
I think every Hawaii bound traveler should read it before stepping off the plane. “AN OPEN LETTER to malahini (visitors) arriving in Hawaiʻi in the wake, and midst, of the pandemic: A few requests as the state opens up today. Pass it on to a traveler near you. Aloha nā malahini (hello visitors),
I imagine you may read this as a gentle, humid breeze kisses your cheek, the scent of salt and plumeria mellowing the stale plane air you’ve been breathing for hours. I imagine you arriving with that open-hearted excitement born of travel, for even if you’ve been to these islands before, they’ve been closed to visitors for most of 2020.
"The Music Of Hawaii" by Melveen Leed
"May the life of the ʻāina (land) be perpetuated in righteousness." It is up to us, all of us, to ensure that this ʻāina—and its people, its kūpuna (ancestors), its kānaka maoli (native Hawaiians)—are protected, revered, and honored. And so, over the past six months, Hawaiʻi has wondered if there might be a new way forward, a way to reimagine an industry that has become fundamentally extractive and exploitative, an industry built on imperialism, essentialism, and appropriation, an industry that serves the consumer while desecrating the consumed. Yes, I’m talking about tourism. Hawaiʻi’s economy is severely dependent on tourism, which means our time in COVID lockdown left the state with one of the highest unemployment rates in the country. Many businesses shuttered. Families suffered. Homelessness skyrocketed. If we don’t return to tourism—one expression of the abusive relationship the state has been in with its colonizer for over two centuries—the economy as we know it is doomed.
A fellow malahini on our one earth”