I just noticed this as it's very difficult for me to keep up. In this example, Keiki Watson (whom I thought was a girl but I do that sometimes since Hawaiian names have no gender... I only knew female "Keiki"'s LOL) anyway here Keiki Watson explains about the Mahele after Jere Krischel tried to twist the truth in order to try to spread racism against Hawaiians. I especially like the second to the last paragraph where Jere tells Keiki that he misunderstands... when Keiki knows more about it than Jere can imagine *LOL*
Also one thing that I don't like is when Jere and others like him snipe the Hawaiian Kingdom at every opportunity in order to lead some unwitting people down the wrong path of knowledge. In this case Keiki didn't let it (Jere's statements) go unnoticed. Sometimes you just have to love Hawaiian men. Unfortunately (and I am writing about it in the book that I'm working on)... some people try to de-HUMANize Hawaiians especially de-masculinizing Hawaiian men. When a Hawaiian man such as Keiki Watson stands up I give him credit for doing so despite the past and present attempts by non-Hawaiians of de-masculinizing Hawaiian men in an attempt to make them feel as though they are incapable of protecting Hawaiian women and children throughout Hawaiian history.
Like the song goes, "What a man what a man what a mighty good man." That is Keiki Watson whom I gave a difficult time regarding citizenship with the Hawaiian Kingdom but I give everyone a difficult time irrelevant of gender, ethnicity, national origin, etc. I do NOT discriminate LOL Anyway here it is:
"People were just people, regardless of ancestry. As a person at the time of the Great Mahele, who was a tenant of the land, they were eligible for the 1/3rd share."
Keiki: You are correct people are people, regardless of ancestry, but interests/ownership in land is based on ancestry or purchase and since the people and chiefs that were under Kamehameha I were identified as those whom the land belonged, it is only they and their heirs whom have an interest/ownership in all the land or as stated in the rules of division, rule #2 "the remaining third to the Tenants, the actual possessors and cultivators of the soil, to have and to hold, to them, their heirs and successors forever.". And those possessors and cultivators of the soil were identified as the people and chiefs whom were under Kamehameha I as to whom the land belonged.
"It is clearly talking about the present system (pre-Mahele). It also said "it belonged" not "it belongs". Past tense."
Keiki: Very insightful, the Declaration speaks to the source of ownership (which was undivided/held in common) for all the lands and it did "belong"
to "na kanaka a me na ali'i" of that generation (as well as the generations before) in common upon which their heirs and so forth have the same interest until that specific heir chooses to divide out his/her interest as was addressed in the rules of division.
"That was the preamble, Keiki. The Great Mahele ended the common ownership of the land, and divided it up amongst three classes - the crown, the chiefs, and the tenants. Not the crown, the chiefs, and the native tenants. My understanding is that there were in fact several mahele claims made by non-native tenants to the land, although I don't have the specifics."
Keiki: The Great Mahele was a division between Kauikeaouli and other 251 konohiki, it was a division of management, "At the same time a committee was appointed to effect the division between the King as feudal suzerain and the chiefs his feudatories, before whom "all questions between the King and the chiefs were to be discussed, and settled by mutual consent of the King and each chief or landlord, after which the King and each Chief were to sign and seal the settlement that should be made, never thereafter to be disturbed." The work was commenced on the 27th of January, 1848, and conducted with such dispatch that it was completed March 7th of the same year. The book in which this division is recorded, is called the "Mahele Book" or Book of Division" (W.D. Alexander, Superintendent of Government Survey, 1891). The tenants did not divide out within the Great Mahele. Therefore their rights are undivided. "In all Awards of whole Ahupua'a(s) and Ili(s) the rights of Tenants are expressly reserved, "Koe na Kuleana o Kanaka." The same Act of August 6th, 1850, confirms the resolutions passed by the Privy Council on the 21st of December, 1849, granting fee-simple titles, free of all commutation to all native tenants, for their cultivated lands and house lots (W.D. Alexander, Superintendent of Government Survey, 1891).
"Similarly if you look at the statement you quoted, there is no right for a tenant of one bit of land to claim rights to lands they are not possessing or cultivating. If what you believe was true, rule #3 would be awfully difficult to work out."
Keiki: The native tenant can make a claim on any land that they reside on and cultivate on. Should he move to any area and reside and cultivate is where he can make his claim. So he can choose his houselot and area of cultivation anywhere within the archipelago free of commutation other than Honolulu and Lahaina.
"Clearly this was not the intent of the Great Mahele - land was to be given to the people on the land, the possessors and cultivators, not farmers from distant islands with no relation to particular parcels"
Keiki: The intent of the Great Mahele was to divide out the managerial interests of the Konohiki and Kauikeaouli as well as the governments. The awards of all these divisions had the phrase in Hawaiian "Koe na'e na kuleana o na kanaka" and in english "However reserving the rights of the native tenants" otherwise inheriting this interest in common as individuals from the cited "na kanaka a me na ali'i" in the Declaration of Rights.
"This (rule #3) specifically gave the right to title to a split between Chiefs/konohikis, and the actual tenants possessing and "cultivating the soil"."
Keiki: the actual tenants possessing and "cultivating the soil". are the native tenants whom individually derive their interests through devise from their ancestors known in the Declaration of Rights as "na kanaka a me na ali'i" whom were people and chiefs under Kamehameha I.
"I think Keiki, you're misunderstanding the difference between how things used to be (belonging to everyone in common), to how they were divided at the time of the Mahele."
Keiki: The only interests divided in the Mahele were the Konohiki's, King's and the Government's. Therefore as stated in rule #2 in the rules of division "remaining third to the Tenants, the actual possessors and cultivators of the soil, to have and to hold, to them, their heirs and successors forever." and those tenants derive their interests (undivided) from their ancestors known as "na kanaka a me na ali'i" of whom were under Kamehameha I and held as individuals a common/undivided interest in all the lands. to whom there descendants with the same interests undivided as native tenants.
"Furthermore, it was not vested with the chiefs and people at the time of formation, but simply "the chiefs and people". Nothing in that preamble put any limitations on who the people were, be they haole immigrants who had sworn fealty to specific chiefs and possessed and cultivated the land, or kanaka maoli who had been living there since before the formation of the kingdom."
Keiki: The people and the chiefs under Kamehameha I were all kanaka maoli and there common/undivided interest in the land was recognized in the Declaration of Rights. The interests of the people and chiefs is derived from previous generations as is all interests in land passed down through devise, it is with the formation of the Kingdom through Kamehameha I that the administration of Kamehameha III is recognizing such interests through the Declaration of Rights. Mahalo for the mana'o.
* "Kanaka maoli" can mean "Hawaiian" in English