Our beloved KWXX Ho‘olaulea, a Hilo staple.
The smell of barbecue lingering in the cool summer evening air. The reggae tunes soothing into the background sunset, fading in and out of ear shot. The youthful and the seasoned mingling right on cue with the evening, and everyone is enjoying themselves — some more than others.
It’s well-known that the contents of many minors’ Big Gulps are not mere fruit juices or sodas. We must first ask ourselves who is to blame? There were countless fights, endless brawls without police inference and deescalation.
After this event, driving under the influence charges soar every year like clockwork. Numerous people discuss the depravity across all ages, with opposing age groups constantly blaming one another.
So, once again, we must ask ourselves who is really at fault? The minors’ suspected malt liquor contents, the coolers packed with pre-purchased beers or those with the pocket alcohol-baring flasks?
Could the causes be the countless individuals fighting outside every downtown Hilo club that night? Or the fights across town at McDonald’s carried out by teenagers?
The truth is we are all to blame! How could we have let such a beautiful gift of a night filled with song and mele become so tainted?
I want to entice us as a community to change the outcome of the Ho‘olaulea for the better. Put ohana and aloha first. We have to police ourselves better.
We must end the meaningless fights, stop the underage drinking. Stop adults from openly drinking; bring back the beer gardens or other law-abiding ways to allow safe consumption.
The Ho‘olaulea is a beautiful community event filled with laughter, mele, hula and ohana. Let’s get back to that!
TMT and the law
The rule of law is very useful.
“Bayonet constitution” laws were used to take the islands from Hawaiian people.
Japanese Americans were incarcerated in prison camps by the rule of law.
The Cherokee Nation was forced off its land and sent to Oklahoma on the Trail of Tears by the rule of law.
The Thirty Meter Telescope International Observatory followed the rule of law to put a telescope on Maunakea.
Sometimes it’s better to be on the right side of history than the right side of the law.