“ʻO kēia ka lua o ka ʻaha aʻo kūloko e mālama ʻia nei. ʻO ka mua, ua mālama ʻia i kēlā makahiki kula aku nei, i ka wā nō i hahana loa ai ke kūpale ʻana iā Maunakea”, i ʻōlelo ai ʻo Hiapo Perreira, he polopeka no Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani ma ke Kulanui o Hawaiʻi ma Hilo. Me ke kākoʻo o ke kulanui o Hawaiʻi ma Hilo i mālama ʻia ai he ʻaha hou me ke kumuhana ʻo ka paio kālaimanaʻo; he mākau a haʻawina i ʻike ʻia mai loko mai o nā hanana e kū nei no ke kūkulu ʻohe nānā ʻana ma Maunakea. Wahi a Perreira, “No laila, he ʻaha aʻo kūloko ma ke ʻano hoʻi e nānā hou aku ai i ka ʻike; pehea kākou e ʻike nei i ka ʻike, a pehea e hoʻohana nei i kēlā ʻike.”
“Ua hoʻomaka kākou ma ka nānā a ʻimi i nā laʻana paio, nā kino paio kuʻuna like ʻole, me ka noʻonoʻo pū pehea e hoʻopōʻaiapili hou ai i kēia mau paio; e hoʻohana i kēia mau lā”, i ʻōlelo ai ʻo Aolani Kaʻilihou, he kumu ma Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani ma ke Kulanui o Hawaiʻi ma Hilo. Ma kēia ʻaha i haʻiʻōlelo ai nā polopeka no nā moʻolelo o ka Hawaiʻi i pili i nā ʻano kino paio kuʻuna, me ke komo pū ʻana o nā haumāna ma ke kālailai a hoʻopōʻaiapili hou ʻana i nā moʻolelo a mele kuʻuna i nā kino paio e ʻike ʻia nei i kēia au.
Wahi hou a Perreira, “He waiwai mau ka hiki ke hui pū ka poʻe a pau. He waiwai ka papa, akā, ʻo ke kumu wale nō me kāna mau haumāna pau ma laila. Ke hui pū me kēia, hui pū nā manaʻo like ʻole a pau e hoʻoholo ai ke kanaka i kona manaʻo iho nō ma luna o kekahi kahua ʻike paʻa. He waiwai loa kēlā.”
ʻO kekahi haʻawina maikaʻi o kēia, ʻo ia ke kālailai ʻana i ke mele, “Ka Wai a Kāne”, me ke ʻano e hoʻohana ʻia ai kēia mele ma nā pōʻaiapili like ʻole o ke au nei. “I kēia mau lā, ʻo ke ʻano reggae kekahi mea laha loa, a ua manaʻo ʻo ia, ʻo Kaʻikena hoʻi, e aho paha kēia ʻano. Kūpono kēia hōʻano hou no ka mea ʻo ia ka mea laha loa. He mau mele ʻano paio ma kekahi ʻano, a ua nani kēlā hōʻano hou ʻana”, i ʻōlelo ai ʻo ʻIkaʻaka Pang, he haumāna no Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani. Wahi hou a Kaʻilihou, “ʻIke kākou he kuanaʻike kīkoʻī ko ka mea i hiki ke ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi. No laila, ka hiki ke lawe i ke kahua o kākou, a hoʻopōʻaiapili hou i kēlā ʻike, e ola ana nō i loko o kēlā hana. ʻO ia ke koʻikoʻi maoli.”
“I loko o ka papa seminā o kēia kau, ua hoʻoholo e kālele ma luna o ka paio kālaimanaʻo; ka hoʻoulu ʻana i nā mākau e pono ai ka paio kālaimanaʻo. A no laila, ua manaʻo ʻia he maikaʻi paha ke mālama ʻia ia mau mākau a hoʻomaʻamaʻa pono ʻia ia mau mākau i loko o kēia ʻaha”, i pane ai ʻo Perreira. Me ka manaʻo e ʻimi i ka hoʻoikaika mākau ʻōlelo ma ka pōʻaiapili paio kālaimanaʻo i mālama maoli ʻia ai ʻelua pānela paio ma waena o nā haumāna seminā me kekahi mau polopeka. ʻŌlelo ʻia e ʻIkaʻaka Pang, “Ua ʻano paʻakikī. ʻO kēia nō ka makamua o ka ʻike ʻana i kēia pōʻaiapili hou aʻe o ka ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi. No laila, ka ʻike ʻana he pae hou aku, pono e kia ka noʻonoʻo.”
Wahi a Kaʻilihou, “Mākaukau lākou. I ka hoʻomaka ʻana, ua haʻalulu i ka paio me nā kumu. A laila, ua haʻalulu i ka paʻa kūpono i ka ʻikepili no nā nīnūnē ʻelua. A laila, ua haʻalulu nui i ka hoʻohana ʻana i ka ʻike ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi. Akā naʻe, i kēia manawa, ua haʻalele iki lākou i kēlā haʻaluu, a laila ua hoʻohana maoli lākou i ko lākou ʻike ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi. ʻO ia ka puka lanakila maoli.”
“This is the College’s second “all-class teach-in” aimed at raising awareness around the Maunakea issue”, says Hiapo Perreira, a professor of Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo. With support from the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, the forum emphasized the art of debate, a process and skill being brought to the forefront as the struggles over Maunakea continues. According to Perreira, “We took this opportunity to re-evaluate the way we perceive knowledge and how we use that knowledge.”
“Traditionally, Hawaiian debate took many forms. We looked at those and analyzed their ongoing relevance and applicability today”, says Aolani Kaʻilihou, a faculty member of Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani. The all-day event included presentations on these traditional forms of debate and great Hawaiian orators, as well as interactive workshops to apply students’ current studies to modern forms of debate.
According to Perreira, “Coming together like this is extremely valuable. Classroom time is important, but this builds on that. This allows all of us to hear a broader range of thoughts and better shape our individual perspectives.”
One aspect highlighted the use of song to make a statement, specifically the mele “Ka Wai a Kāne”. According to ʻIkaʻaka Pang, a Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani student, “Reggae has universal popularity nowadays. Kaʻikena used this popular genre that is often a platform for addressing social issues to give this mele renewed meaning for us today!” Kailihou says that, “We know that understanding and using our Hawaiian language gives us a unique perspective. Using our language to continually recontextualize traditional knowledge for new generations is critical.”
“This year’s seminar class is focused on this art of debate from a Hawaiian perspective and the relevant, necessary skills. So we incorporated a scenario to practice and analyze that process into the day’s event.” says Perreira. Towards the end of the day, students and professors engaged in two mock debates to hone their skills. ʻIkaʻaka says that, “It challenged us to use our language skills in a new context while also focusing on the debate and banter.”
According to Kaʻilihou, “They grew in the process from initially being a bit nervous to debate their professors on the issues at hand and being able to articulate themselves using proper and correct Hawaiian. But they were well-prepared and once they relaxed, they really started to apply their knowledge naturally. To me, that’s a huge win all around!”