Editor’s note: Contributor Will Falk has been working and living with protesters on Mauna Kea who are attempting to block construction of an 18-story astronomical observatory with an Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). Opposition in Hawaii to the building of the telescope is based on concerns about potential disruption to the fragile alpine environment and the fact that Mauna Kea is a sacred site for the Native Hawaiian culture. On June 24th, agents with the Department of Land and Natural Resources abandoned an attempt to escort construction workers to the proposed location after discovering the only road up the mountain was not navigable.
By Will Falk
The pohaku stopped the Thirty Meter Telescope construction last Wednesday. They began appearing on the Mauna Kea Access Road like raindrops. First, they were sprinkled lightly underfoot. A small rock here. A larger one there. The cops cussed and swore as they tried to remove them from the path of their seemingly unstoppable paddy wagons.
As the cops ascended, washing over the lines of Mauna Kea Protectors standing in their way, small piles grew into a drizzle of stones formed in the gathering fog. Then, the pohaku became a downpour. Looking up the road half-a-mile, I saw heavy boulders standing up, marching to meet us, making it impossible for the TMT construction crews and their police escort to climb any higher.
As a legal observer for the Protectors, I was tracking an angry Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) branch chief officer Lino Kamakau making sure he knew his actions were watched. When he, his men, and the retreating Protectors rounded the first hairpin turn on the gravel road marking DLNR’s jurisdiction on Mauna Kea, they had already arrested and dragged 11 of our comrades off their feet and into paddy wagons to be taken to jail. Included in these 11 were two men I admire and consider friends – Kaleikoa Ka’eo and Kaho’okahi Kanuha.
A terrible sense of powerlessness set in as I watched DLNR men grab Kaleikoa as he chanted pule in Hawaiian. The cops manhandled him as he went limp, so he could not be accused of resisting arrest. I remembered how a few days before, when Kaleikoa arrived on Mauna Kea to offer his support after the TMT’s announcement that construction would begin again, he walked right up to me and pushed two cans of iced coffee into my hands. Kaleikoa remembered from a breakfast we shared 10 days prior, before his now-famous “Don’t Drink the Dirty Water” speech that I love iced coffee.
Kaleikoa Kaeo- Don’t Drink Dirty Water Part 1 from anne keala kelly on Vimeo.
Kaho’okahi had already been involved in one intense confrontation with Kamakau lower down the Mountain. Earlier, Kamakau and his men had stormed Kaho’okahi’s line knocking down two Kanaka guys even bigger than me (I’m 6’2, 200 pounds). Kaho’okahi stood nose to nose with Kamakau, while a crowd of Protectors tightened up around Kaho’okahi with cameras pointed at the cops demanding their right as Kanaka Maoli to pule on their most sacred mountain. The cops realizing they were severely outnumbered, and sensing the anger in the air, hesitated.
Kaho’okahi negotiated time for the Protectors in his line to withdraw farther up the Mountain. He reformed about 200 yards higher up and watched as 10 arrests were made. It looked like we could not stop the cops. Kamakau was merciless, demanding that his men arrest anyone they could catch up with. When the DLNR cops reached Kaho’okahi the second time, I watched with deep sadness as my friend’s eyes flushed with the specific sorrow that only accompanies the realization that fellow humans have lost any sense of reason.
All I could think of was how kind the Kanuha family had been to me while I lived on Mauna Kea. I remembered Uncle Joe taking me to lunch with his big-hearted laugh. I remembered Auntie Patti calling out to me from the sea in Kona after the Kamehameha Day March that she loved me and to be safe going up the Mauna. I remembered Kawai recalling my alma mater’s (the Dayton Flyers) recent success in the NCAA basketball tournament. I remembered Kaho’okahi, sensing my homesickness, inviting me to come watch Game 1 of the NBA finals at a bar with him and Kawai. The Kanuha’s became a surrogate family, for me, and I knew they would be very anxious for their son and brother’s well-being.
My heart was sore as we made that turn in Mauna Kea’s clinging mist. My feet – especially my left foot – hurt. My face was peeling from sunburn. I was growing deeply weary from running up and down the Mauna with messages for organizers. After Kaho’okahi was arrested, as the cops approached a line of young women dancing in prayer, I wanted to sit down and weep.
I despaired. I didn’t believe the arrests were going to stop. I wanted to throw down my clipboard, rip off my obnoxious yellow legal observer t-shirt, and let the nearest cop drag me away, too. In those moments, I knew we could not stop the cops.
As the lump in my throat hardened, I thought about how the tone had been set early that morning when the very first cops to come up the Mauna Kea Access Road ran over my foot in their paddy wagon. With my experience as a public defender, I volunteered to be a legal observer when the cops came to clear us out of the way in order to start construction. With the letters “Legal Observer” printed across my chest, it was my job to shadow the cops and make sure they behaved.
I was more surprised than injured. I had leaned closer to the front window of the paddy wagon ready to record with my clipboard and pen as my friend David asked for the officer’s name and badge number when the police officer unexpectedly sped away and over my foot. “Is this how the day is gonna go?” I wondered aloud, wincing and testing the pain in my foot.
Unfortunately, there was not much of a bruise, though my friends did take pictures of the tire mark over my shoe.
Trailing the cops on the Mauna Kea Access Road, anticipating another brutal round of arrests, I told myself the incident with my foot was an omen: The cops simply were not going to stop their march up the Mountain for us. No, they would not stop for us, but maybe other beings could stop them.
As we began passing the pohaku on the road, a sense of spiritual resonance grew. The stones renewed my courage. Even though I was 9,000 miles from my ancestral homelands – Ireland and Germany – my haole heart felt the importance of the phenomenon I was witnessing.
My heart remembered how, two days before, I went with the Mauna Kea Protectors to the summit to build an ahu – a Hawaiian altar made of stacked stones – on the TMT construction site. A truck load of lava rocks – referred to as Pele by Hawaiians because lava is a manifestation of the powerfully sublime Hawaiian goddess Pele – was brought up the Mountain. At 13,700 feet, under a blazing hot sun, we had to carry, one by one, what must have been 1 ton of rocks a quarter mile across the TMT construction site.
Forty or so of us formed one long line and passed each rock, person to person, to the end of the line. We had to do this 10 times to get the lighter stones to the ahu site. The younger and stronger among us – myself included – heaved the heavier stones over our shoulders and limped our way in the thin Mauna air to the ahu.
My hands bled. My forearms were bruised. My back hurt. I had not showered in 10 days, and I was grateful for the cleanse of well-earned sweat. It was beautiful work.
I have written about the loneliness I felt on Mauna Kea. Some of that loneliness was the typical loneliness that accompanies living in a new place. Some more of that loneliness came from visiting a land I had never been to before, where I did not know the names of the hills, the trees, or the flowers. The most profound loneliness, though, came from my unfamiliarity with the rituals and ceremonies of Hawai’i. I simply did not know how to pray on Mauna Kea.
The prayers came to me, finally, when I stooped down to lift heavy pohaku for my Kanaka Maoli friends. The stones’ skin rubbing on my skin woke the prayers sleeping in my body. Using my muscles in an ancient way stirred ceremonies I had forgotten. For the first time on Mauna Kea, I knew I was where I belonged.
While we were lifting these stones and I was rejoicing in the feeling of prayers remembered, one of the Protectors began singing an old Hawaiian song of resistance: Kaulana Na Pua. The song was written in 1893 after Americans forcibly overthrew the Kingdom of Hawaii. The song urges Hawaiians not to sign papers in support of annexation to the United States. Instead of accepting anything from the United States, the song powerfully declares that “we are satisfied with the stones/the astonishing food of the land” implying that Hawaiians would rather eat Hawaiian stones than accept American occupation.
Lifting stones on Mauna Kea to help Kanaka Maoli protect their sacred mountain, I recognized the power in these Hawaiian stones.
Officer Lino Kamakau did, too.The pohaku standing on the Mauna Kea Access Road had simply become too thick for the DLNR men to move. I followed three feet behind Kamakau, unsuccessfully attempting to record his words with my phone, as he told his men to wait while he climbed the road a hundred yards to survey the path ahead.
The road was straight, carved into the mountainside with 20 foot walls on the uphill side. The mist surrounding the procession began to clear. We could see a half-mile to the next hairpin turn. Strong pohaku, standing thickly on the road as far as we could see, barred the way.
Kamakau radio’d his superior and said “We can’t move them all. We have to stop. We just can’t do it.” The ten or so of us who heard him say that jumped up and down, hugged and high-five’d, while some simply sat down and cried.
Eventually, Kamakau and the DLNR re-assembled to tell us that the stones presented a public safety concern and that they must stop until safer conditions exist. As the news spread, and people higher on the mountain saw the DLNR men get in their vehicles and turn around to ride in defeat down the Mountain, there was more cheering and more crying. Celebrating with 700 hundred people, who all came bravely together to protect one of the world’s most sacred places as we did, was one of the purest feelings I’ve ever felt.
Then, people began to sing. The first song I heard was Kaulana Na Pua and so much meaning accompanied the victorious words, “We are satisfied with the stones, the astonishing food of the land.”
In the last two days, (I’m writing this on Friday, June 26) the DLNR and Office of Mauna Kea (OMK) Management have shut down the Mauna Kea Access Road. A sign hangs on the Visitor Center door saying “Closed Until Further Notice.” For the first time since the first telescope was built on Mauna Kea’s hallowed summit, the Mountain knows peace. I hope it lasts forever.
Meanwhile, the mainstream media has been parroting this “public safety concern” language. Of course, they are trying to deceive the public into thinking the Mauna Kea Protectors and the pohaku present the safety hazard. They are lying.
If we’re going to talk about public safety, then we have to talk about the 7 reported mercury spills associated with the telescopes on Mauna Kea. The largest freshwater aquifer lives under Mauna Kea and leaked mercury in the Island’s biggest source of freshwater is a serious public health concern.
If we’re going to talk about public safety, then we have to talk about the three construction workers who died in a fire during the construction of the Subaru telescope on Mauna Kea. If we’re going to talk about public safety, then we have to talk about the threat of serious accidents posed by hundreds of automobiles driven by tourists up Mauna Kea every day. If we’re going to talk about public safety, then we have to talk about the presence of guns brought to Mauna Kea – not by peaceful Mauna Kea Protectors, but by the police who violently ran over my foot and violently dragged away non-violent demonstrators.
Do not name the pohaku as a public safety concern. They simply stood – strong and stoic -resolute in their heaviness and stopped the TMT project from destroying Mauna Kea’s summit.
For other stories in this series, go here.
John Stump,City Heights says
Okay great civil disobedience, What about the telescope? Wasn’t this telescope the one that had the potential to detect comets far enough in advance to permit an intervention versus today’s detection which might give us enough warning to go extinct drunk?
Doug Porter says
If you’d read the earlier articles in the series, perhaps you’d have some insight into this.
Mauna Kea: Why the Mountain?
Protecting Mauna Kea: History for Haoles
Protecting Mauna Kea: Stopping Murder-Suicide
Protecting Mauna Kea: The Hate Hawaii
Protecting Mauna Kea: Talking Story
Protecting Mauna Kea: Notes From the Summit
Protecting Mauna Kea: Pule Plus Action
Protecting Mauna Kea: Vocabulary for Haoles
Protecting Mauna Kea: This is a War
The Huble Space Telescope is superior to the TMT and would be able to discern the situation way before what the TMT could assume would happen. TMT is just a toy. The one in Chile will be the largest and more advanced than the TMT. This is a moot issue.
Tane, that is false, so please stick to facts. The one in Chile is a complement to the TMT. It is in the southern hemisphere, whereas the TMT is in the north. The TMT will have optics 144 times better than the Hubble.
I cannot comment to the improved visual ability to detect threats from incoming asteroids/comets, but seeing better and clearer into space seems like it would help that end.
MAHALO NUI WILL!!! We miss you already. Do what you have to do and don’t forget to come home to the Mauna where your ʻohana will be waiting for you
Alan Dean Foster says
Isn’t moving stones from their natural resting place a form of desecration? Isn’t taking them to build walls a form of construction? Why is moving stones to build walls and altars allowed but moving them to build a telescope is not?
I would think that a telescope that seeks to expand the knowledge of all humans honors the gods more than does a rock wall. But that’s just my opinion.
Will Falk says
The way Kanaka Maoli and their supporters moved stones on Wednesday is completely different than the way the TMT project proposes to “move” stones. The TMT project has to dynamite or drill an eight acre patch of beautiful blue stone, two stories deep. This is destruction of stones not “moving” stones. On top of this, the construction and maintenance of telescopes on Mauna Kea has lead to the deaths of workers before (3 died in an insulation fire in 1996) while there have been 7 reported mercury spills involving the telescopes. Mauna Kea houses the largest freshwater aquifer on Hawai’i island and mercury in the groundwater is devastating.
As far as telescopes honoring the gods…Telescopes come covered in blood. You cannot build a telescope without steel, aluminum, copper, and fossil fuels. You cannot have steel, aluminum, copper, and fossil fuels without mountain top removal, open pit mining, climate change, and the murderous labor conditions required to extract these materials.
The TMT says their project is for the good of science. But, there is a right way and a wrong way – a violent way and a non-violent way – to engage in science. When Hawaiians navigated the world’s largest and greatest oceans using nothing more than wood, stone, and the naked human eye they engaged in science the right way. The TMT, however, engages in science the violent way.
And yet many other Kanaka, including the monarchy of the past, were in favor of the further exploration of the stars, and felt honored that Hawai’i might be able to contribute to something that’s for the good of the whole of humanity. There is more than one viewpoint, that is what makes the tapestry so rich.
Other factual points:
– Actual land usage footprint will be 1.44 acres. The total area overall is 5 acres. The TMT at 5 acres would occupy 0.04 % of the science reserve portion of the mauna, which is 11,288 acres. There is no sacred monument or site anywhere in the TMT area. A side note: the roads created by the astronomy community are what allow most of the people access to that altitude of the mountain.
– It will only be visible from 14% of the total island, primarily from the Waimea area (note: only about 15% of the population of the island will be able to see it during their day-to-day activities, and it’s not even being constructed on the summit). Other telescopes have an average visibility from 43% of the island. In addition, the TMT dome will be painted in such a way that it reflects the sky and ground, thus making it even harder to see – especially at a glance.
– The TMT does not come anywhere near the aquifer nor affect it in any way. The dump directly above the aquifer location in Hilo would be a far greater concern to public water safety. Here is a link to the EIS for any of your readers interested: http://www.malamamaunakea.org/uploads/management/plans/TMT_FEIS_vol1.pdf
While your passionate support for selective causes around the globe has some merit, please consider looking at issues from more than one angle, and doing some research into at least some of the truths of a situation.
Patty Ikeda says
Mahalo Will! Malama pono (take care) and A Hui Hou (see you again).
Keep spreading the Aloha wherever you go!
Another great essay Will…
Perhaps the pohaku(stone’s) wants to Stop the Desecration too…
750+ on the Mauna trying to Stop the Desecration. An the Pohaku saves the day.
What I don’t understand why the “State of Hawaii” NOT protecting OUR treasured cultural and sacred sites? Isn’t that what they’re supposed to DO?
Take care your foot… Hope those safety guys don’t run over the other protectors…
Mahalo Will for all you dedication on the mauna. We truly appreciate you from your mind, body and spirit. Having you live with us has been nothing but a blessing. We love you and miss you.
Will Falk says
Thank you very much for saying this, Ku’uipo. It has been a pleasure getting to know you. I miss you all very much. If it wasn’t for your bravery all of this would not have been possible.
Oh! I just learned that one of my good friends here knows how to play trumps…
Mahalo piha, Will! I’m so sorry that you’re got run-over!! I hear a couple people had that happen to them but I didn’t know you were one of them! Auwe!
Also, I’m sorry I didn’t get to formally meet you and aloha you on the Mauna that day! I have you on camera tho.
Another masterpiece! A true Aloha ‘Aina warrior indeed! Mahalo nunui!!
> When Hawaiians navigated the world’s largest and greatest oceans using > nothing more than wood, stone, and the naked human eye they engaged in > science the right way. The TMT, however, engages in science the
> violent way.
As profound as at it may sound to you, that makes zero sense. Astronomy is an entirely non-violent science, the only difference between TMT and instruments of the ancient Hawaiian kilo hoku is what materials they use. If you think using glass or metal to build telescopes is violent, then….you’re going to think pretty much every single town and city on this planet is reeking with violence.
> You cannot have steel, aluminum, copper, and fossil fuels without mountain top removal, open pit mining, climate change, and the murderous labor conditions required to extract these materials
If using and/or containing steel, aluminum, copper and using fossil fuels is to be condemned, then I sure hope you live in a wood house with no nails, you have no mobile phone, you do not have a pickup or car, you walked all the way to Mauna Kea, and you’ve never used a computer.
Will Falk says
We are not responsible for the violent system of power we were born into. We are, however, responsible for dismantling that system. In order to dismantle this violent system, we must use the tools given to us. This includes using a car, a computer, etc.
My friend, Lierre Keith, says it best: “Understand: the task of an activist is not to negotiate systems of power with as much personal integrity as possible–it’s to dismantle those systems.”
The Jews in the Warsaw ghetto used arms stolen from the Nazis. No one would argue that the Jews were as culpable as the Nazis because they used the same tools as the Nazis.
Will, that makes zero sense. You cannot equate the situation of the Jews during the Holocaust to the protesters on Mauna Kea. Those are not equitable examples at all. They are not living under the duress of being executed at any moment by a mindless dictator who has corralled them all into concentration camps. Jews who lived through that tragedy would not agree.
What are you & your friend Lierre left with, when you dismantle the “systems of power” you’re working within? Nothing? Anarchy? Self-rule with no rules at all? Offer solutions to make things better Will, otherwise you’re not doing anything constructive for future generations, only destroying them.
You’ve quoted that statement elsewhere and it’s ill intended. I would disagree and argue that acting with Personal Integrity is what it is all about.
Gardner De Aguiar says
I totally agree with you.
Will Falk says
“you’re going to think pretty much every single town and city on this planet is reeking with violence.”
Yes. All cities are reeking with violence. Cities, by their very nature, are unsustainable. That’s why for the majority of human existence, humans didn’t live in cities. When humans live in concentrated populations greater than their land can support, they steal from other lands. Welcome to Colonization 101. For the record, Hawaiians never established cities. They only lived with populations that their land could support. There’s a reason why Hawai’i was a paradise when Cook first saw it.
Mandy Barre says
aloha, Will..hope we hear from you again soon. Keep your spirits up and stay with us.
Mandy Barre says
ps- beautifully written piece…♥
Gardner De Aguiar says
As a Native Hawaiian who has lived on this island for almost 50 years, this is the first time I’ve seen so much interest in the mountain. There have been many Hawaiian rituals which have taken place at the volcano throughout the years. This is the first time I’ve ever seen people go up to the mountain and build stone monuments.
To me, it’s a little hypocritical. These protesters claim to be protecting Mauna Kea from desecration, but then proceed to desecrate the mountain themselves by scattering its boulders around. It doesn’t make sense and, to be honest, I don’t think it makes sense to them either. I don’t think they’ve really given any of this a good thinking through.
I’m very afraid that, once again, we will be shooting ourselves in the foot — the same way we did with the Super Ferry years ago, something we so terribly needed here in the islands, where people protested it into bankruptcy. The TMT will be paying a million a year in rent towards the state of Hawaii. It will also be bringing a WEALTH of INFORMATION to the WORLD, and Hawaii has a chance to be part of that. Sadly, this is all lost on the protesters.
Do more research…Mauna a Wakea is a wahi kapu. Meaning sacred place, in older times only select people or chiefs were allowed up the mountain for ritualistic ceremonies or offerings. The “General Public” was not allowed up there because it is a Wao Akua. Meaning Dwelling of the Gods. If you were a chief of high status, you were considered a God (in the sense of a chiefess Nahienaena where she was so highly ranked she needed to be carried on the shoulders when around her father Kamehamhema because her mothers status gave her a higher status then her father (example)). The godly chiefs were granted permission to enter realms of the Akua.
Well you might say, “block all access accept for cultural purpose”…I surely would like to see that happen. It would be truly honoring Mauna a Wakea as we should be.
The idea here is to put a halt to business as usual. To stop the TMT project is to directly confront the forces tearing our planet apart. Science is not neutral. There is always a consequence to carrying out science. While the “wealth of knowledge” may be the end goal, the result is the destruction of resources. The discoveries themselves can never replace the destroyed resources. Scientists rarely if ever are held responsible for their discoveries even though they have blood on their hands. I’m not saying that science is universally destructive, make no mistake, I acknowledge that there are real benefits to science but as Will said, there is a right way and wrong way to do this. The dangers and moral implications must be of prime concern otherwise we will continue the destruction of this planet our only home.
Bryan, do you understand how small the footprint of this telescope will be, in physical actuality? Less than half a tenth of even one percent of the top of the mountain, and that is only the top. It hardly represents “the destruction of this planet”. There are far greater examples to be had, and far greater human atrocities on this planet, let alone in our islands, to be concerned with. With the support of eleven countries, this represents the cooperation of people and cultures across the world.
Since you are such an expert on Hawaiian culture, did you know there is an old adze quarry on Mauna Kea itself? Mining rocks, now that’s a process that strikes me as pretty violent…
Will Falk says
I’ve been to that adze quarry, Mike. And, centuries of mining by Kanaka Maoli on Mauna Kea has yielded less destruction – by far – than the destruction the TMT project would do in a matter of weeks. I’m not even talking about the introduction of toxic chemicals – chemicals Kanaka Maoli never created and did not use in the adze quarries.
Kaapuni Aiwohi says
Mahalo to you Will for bringing your warmest aloha. Aloha from the Aiwohi family of Maui
Joel Peralto says
Reading through all these comments reflects an arrogance that indigenous folks the world over, for centuries, have endured and suffered though dire consequences as a result. Many folks who should know better are brainwashed into thinking that our current path is worthwhile and sustainable. It’s doesn’t take advanced degrees to understand that we are headed toward global oblivion. The protectors on the Mauna are no different from their counterparts around the globe who are waging war on corporate greed and irresponsible destruction and yes, wanton desecration of sacred places. In the end, Mother Earth will have the final say. Then maybe, the blind may finally see, the deaf finally hear and the truly ignorant finally understand. Kū Kia’i Mauna….
Mahalo nui to all the P R O T E C T O R S working atop the mauna AND behind the scenes. As most of us know, our beloved Mauna Kea is only one in a list too long to number, of selfishness and greed to settle in the Islands. Enough is Enough! Awareness and Education is where our focus needs to be. Mahalo nui Will for your kokua and help in doing your part to educate the world. IMUA! KU KI’A I MAUNA! MAHALO KE AKUA!
David Pu'u says
Mahalo for your work, insight, faithfulness and professionalism, Will.
As this began to heat up I watched and began to stress a bit as I understood in great detail the ramifications of the Mauna for our Nation and the people of Hawaii. As a professional content creator I knew I had an obligation to go an cover this.
And there you were!
On a funny side note. I was born in Milwaukee. My family is from the Big Island. Our roots go back very deeply into Polynesian History.
Bless you, for all your commitment and bravery.
Aloha nui loa and many mahalos for your service.
Mahalo for writing and showing that the aloha aina warriors are not just “a horde of native Hawaiians who are lying” (Faber 2015), but that malihini/haole are also standing to protect Mauna Kea! Greetings from one of your ancestral homelands (mine too)!
First, ai pohaku began when Americans in Hawaii was forcing Hawaiian subjects to take the oath of allegiance to the ipso facto U.S. Provisional Government and later the ipso facto Republic of Hawaii or they would lose their sustainability and jobs. They were told they could eat stones if they didn’t comply. The response was ‘ai pohaku, the astonishing stones would sustain them while they refused to surrender their unalienable rights. This then became a symbol of the Hawaiian subjects’ resistance.
Second, the alleged-state of Hawaii constitutional laws protects the Kanaka maoli (“native Hawaiian subjects”) of their gathering rights and cultural practices and customs(e.g. freedom of religion); ergo, there is no violations of trespassing of which they are being arrested. The lawless U.S. must de-occupy the Hawaiian Kingdom and comply with the law of occupation and the Hawaiian Kingdom’s international status of neutrality established in 1854. Simple.
Lori Saldaña says
Congratulations on using the power of the natural earth to protect the mountain. Thank you for your stories of how the locals have adopted and supported you. The Hawaiians are a loving people. This brings back memories of my time on Hawaii.
Thirty years ago I rode my bike around the Big Island. I saw no traffic or people, for hours at a time. I saw ancient rock walls, built by people centuries before, to delineate sacred land. I scared wildlife, unaccustomed to seeing humans- they were used to cars and trucks, but not a person on a bike.
At various times I was “adopted” by locals who feared a young single woman riding a bicycle would attract danger (it did one night- they protected me).
This also reminded me of our tactics in the 80s and 90s, using logs, boulders and other means to protect ancient forests in the Pacific Northwest, New Mexico and elsewhere. Blockades to slow trucks were ways to show civil disobedience and buy time for others to work in state houses and Washington DC.
Over time, the federal government realized they needed to act to transition these public lands into other uses. But that transition and protection would never have happened without the actions of people, carrying logs, boulders and other barriers, to stop the trucks from killing “the ancient ones” standing on the slopes above us.
Mahalo for the memories of a battle, well fought.
Absolute truth. Mahalo.
Lori Saldaña says
I’ve been hearing about this on the news today. Sounds like things are heating up in this battle, and the road is being closed to all but “moving vehicles” to keep people off the volcano.
I hope Will is able to post updates.