Frank Benson Knoxville, TN I am native american from Alaska. I have been mistaken for hispanic, asian, hawaiian. it’s difficult not to see someones color, but to make assumptions about who someone based on skin tone before meeting the person limits us all.
Claire Iveson Kaunakakai, HI My blonde Anglo son was raised and educated on Molokai, before going to the Berkley College of Music at 17. He was aware from kindergarten that he was a “haole” but didn’t understand that he wasn’t also Hawaiian. Adult Hawaiian friends assured them that he was a keiki o ka’aina, a [...]
Amanda Claiborne Pahoa, HI Asked of me by a typical Hawaiian child of mixed background, brown skin, hair, and eyes. A reminder that blue-eyed freckled folks like me are a minority here.
Elizabeth Norris Taylor Fernandina Beach, FL I have lived my entire life with people coming up to me and asking, “what are you?” For a while in college, I had some very clever comebacks… now days I simply shrug and say, “American, and you?” I have had people come up to me and speak Spanish [...]
Jan Mason NY Born and raised in paradise as a Haole (white) person I had more than my share of discrimination but living on the “mainland” where I “fit in” with the white majority(?) my island heritage is invisible. I have taken to checking the box or “Pacific Islander” though I feel guilty about if [...]
John Book Pasco, WA In my experience as someone who is part-Hawaiian, I’ve found that the stereotypes of what I am and where I’m from were very misinformed, yet seemed endless at the time. Sadly, those who were in error often did not want to know anymore than the stereotype they presented to me. It [...]
Kehaulani H. Minzghor Portland, OR