HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.R. NO.

258

TWENTY-SIXTH LEGISLATURE, 2011

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

HOUSE RESOLUTION

 

 

EXPRESSING LEGISLATIVE SUPPORT FOR AND REQUESTING THE removal of the term "Treaty of Annexation" cast in bronze on the statue of President McKinley on the grounds of McKinley High School.

 

 

 


WHEREAS, on January 16, 1893, over the protest of Queen Liliuokalani, the diplomatic and military forces of the United States assisted insurrectionists in seizing control of the Hawaiian Kingdom government and establishing a government to replace the Hawaiian Kingdom government; and

 

WHEREAS, on February 14, 1893, in Washington, D.C., the United States government signed a "Treaty of Cession of the Hawaiian Kingdom to the United States", which United States President Harrison submitted to the United States Senate for ratification; and

 

WHEREAS, on March 11, 1893, newly elected United States President Grover Cleveland received the protest of Queen Liliuokalani from a Hawaiian Kingdom envoy and withdrew the submission of the treaty from the Senate's consideration; and

 

WHEREAS, President Cleveland thereafter appointed Honorable James Blount as a Special Commissioner to investigate the seizure of the Hawaiian Kingdom and to report his findings to the President; and

 

WHEREAS, the Presidential investigation concluded that the seizure of the Hawaiian Kingdom government was illegal under international law, and President Cleveland thereafter entered into an agreement with Queen Liliuokalani that the federal government would restore the Hawaiian Kingdom government and the Queen would grant amnesty to the insurgents; and

 

WHEREAS, the United States Congress prevented President Cleveland from restoring the Hawaiian Kingdom government; and

 

WHEREAS, Queen Liliuokalani and Hawaiian nationals, to their detriment, relied on President Cleveland's commitment to restore the Hawaiian Kingdom government; and

 

WHEREAS, the United States House of Representatives passed a resolution on February 7, 1894, warning other nations "that foreign intervention in the political affairs of the islands will not be regarded with indifference by the Government of the United States", and the United States Senate endorsed this sentiment by passing a resolution on May 16, 1894, stating "that any intervention in the political affairs of these islands by any other Government will be regarded as an act unfriendly to the United States"; and

 

WHEREAS, on June 16, 1897, newly elected President of the United States William McKinley signed a second treaty of cession in Washington, D.C., with representatives of the "self‑proclaimed Republic of Hawaii", but the proposed treaty remained subject to ratification by the United States Senate; and

 

WHEREAS, on June 18, 1897, Queen Liliuokalani filed a diplomatic protest with the United States State Department in Washington, D.C., stating in pertinent part:

 

"I, Liliuokalani of Hawaii, by the will of God named heir apparent on the tenth day of April, A.D. 1877, and by the grace of God Queen of the Hawaiian Islands on the seventeenth day of January, A.D. 1893, do hereby protest against the ratification of a certain treaty, which, so I am informed, has been signed at Washington by Messrs. Hatch, Thurston, and Kinney, purporting to cede those Islands to the territory and dominion of the United States. I declare such a treaty to be an act of wrong toward the native and part-native people of Hawaii, an invasion of the rights of the ruling chiefs, in violation of international rights both toward my people and toward friendly nations with whom they have made treaties, the perpetuation of the fraud whereby the constitutional government was overthrown, and, finally, an act of gross injustice to me."

 

WHEREAS, on July 24, 1897, Hawaiian political organizations also filed protests with the McKinley Administration against the second treaty; and

 

WHEREAS, in spite of these protests, President McKinley indicated his intent to submit a new treaty of cession to the United States Senate, which would convene in December of 1897; and

 

WHEREAS, in September of 1897, the Men's and Women's Hawaiian Patriotic League (Hui Aloha Aina) initiated signature petitions protesting the treaty and submitted the petitions to the United States Senate in December 1897; and

 

WHEREAS, these protests, along with the formal protests of Queen Liliuokalani, succeeded in preventing the Senate from ratifying this second attempt to annex the Hawaiian Islands by a treaty of cession; and

 

WHEREAS, on April 21, 1898, the United States declared war against the Kingdom of Spain, turning Hawaii into a naval and troop base to commence the war against the Spanish in the Philippines and Guam in the western Pacific Ocean, purportedly to protect the west coast of the United States; and

 

WHEREAS, on July 7, 1898, President McKinley signed a joint resolution of annexation passed by the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate, purporting to annex the Hawaiian Islands as a war necessity; and

 

WHEREAS, a prominent secondary school in Honolulu is named after United States President William McKinley; and

 

WHEREAS, standing at the front entrance to McKinley High School is a bronze statue of President William McKinley holding a document inscribed, "Treaty of Annexation", which never existed and was never implemented; and

 

WHEREAS, the statue has contributed to the misinformation disseminated to the people of Hawaii and Native Hawaiians about the history of these islands and of the relationship of the United States to the Hawaiian Kingdom, leading to the teaching of an incorrect history; and

WHEREAS, these inaccuracies, when incorporated into public displays such as statues, have been harmful to everyone including not only students at McKinley High School but all young people in the public school system because these public displays perpetuate and promote lies as truths, leaving Hawaii's youth unprepared to engage in meaningful dialogue on Hawaii's history; now, therefore,

 

BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the Twenty-sixth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2011, that this body supports the removal of the term "Treaty of Annexation" cast in bronze on the statue of President McKinley on the grounds of McKinley High School; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Education and the Department of Accounting and General Services is requested to take steps to remove the term "Treaty of Annexation" cast in bronze on the statue of President McKinley on the grounds of McKinley High School; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Resolution be transmitted to the Governor of Hawaii, Superintendent of Education, the Comptroller, Office of Hawaiian Affairs, each member of Hawaii's congressional delegation, and the Principal of McKinley High School.

 

 

 

 

OFFERED BY:

_____________________________

 

 

Report Title:

Treaty of Annexation; President McKinley Statute