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“Aloha Means Goodbye”: Maui Rep. Ing Resists Trump’s Hawai‘i Visit

November 2, 2017, 9:28 PM HST · Updated November 3, 10:27 AM
Wendy Osher · 382 Comments
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State Representative Kaniela Saito Ing of Maui will join “Resistance” groups in sending a message to President Donald Trump by holding a sign that reads “Aloha means goodbye” during the President’s visit to Oʻahu on Friday, Nov. 3.

Trump image: Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a campaign rally at the Phoenix Convention Center in Phoenix, Arizona. October 29, 2016. PC: Gage Skidmore. Rep Kaniela Ing file image.

Rep. Ing said he will be holding the sign at the Hawaiʻi State Capitol at 4 p.m. as President Trump visits various Oʻahu sites before embarking on a trip to Asia.

Rep. Ing called the president’s policy “personal” criticizing Trump for comments about diversity, alluding to the president’s remarks against the Diversity Visa Lottery program.  He released the following statement:

“Aloha is a Hawaiian value rooted in the idea of love for one another, that we are all connected. I deeply support this concept; But in order for Hawaiʻi to remain a welcoming place of tolerance and aloha, we need to draw the line at leaders who incite fear and hate for personal gain. Trump rose to power by telling whole groups of people – ­like immigrants, women, and transgendered individuals – that they are not welcome in our society.”

“Hawaiʻi is the most diverse state in the nation, and just a few days ago Trump literally said, ‘Diversity sounds like a good thing, but it is not a good thing.’ That statement alone undermines the values that make Hawaiʻi, Hawaiʻi. So yes, aloha means ‘hello,’ but it also means ‘goodbye.’ ”

Rep. Ing described the impact of Trump’s policies in his own life saying:

“My grandfather was a Japanese-American WW II veteran who fought overseas for our country, despite facing discrimination back home.  This administration evidently supports the idea of internment camps, in 2017, people.”

Rep. Ing provided further comments on Friday via a state House press release saying:

“I’m afraid of turning on the news around my toddler son because I fear this president will teach him it’s OK to sexually assault women. We cannot afford to normalize any of this behavior.”

Rep. Ing also plans to march and speak at the “The Nightmare Must Go!” protest starting at Ala Moana Beach Park at 10 a.m. on Nov. 4, 2017.

During President Trump’s visit, he will participate in a United States Pacific Command briefing and then proceed with First Lady Melania Trump to the USS Arizona Memorial for a tour.

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The White House notes that this is the President’s first stop before traveling to Asia for what is being described as his “longest foreign trip since taking office.” While in Japan Trump is scheduled to meet with Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko and conduct working meetings with Prime Minister Shinzō Abe.  During his Asia trip, The White House reports that Trump hopes to “strengthen international resolve to de-nuclearize North Korea, promote a free and open Indo-Pacific, and advance American prosperity.”

Rep. Ing also made headlines this week for his role in hosting the Reef Madness informational briefing at the State Capitol, that focused on coral bleaching, overfishing and pollution.  He said he plans to push the state Department of Land and Natural Resources to be more proactive.

Wendy Osher
Wendy Osher leads the Maui Now news team. She is also the news voice of parent company, Pacific Media Group, having served more than 15 years as News Director for the company’s six Maui radio stations.

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