Legislator shows no belief in basic human rights

Mele Carroll’s testimony on the marriage equality bill claimed that special sessions should only be called for issues that matter, like Native Hawaiian rights. She claimed that marriage equality robs Native Hawaiians of more rights, citing similarities to past oppression of hula and Hawaiian language. She referred to religion and she used words like “pono.”

But weren’t Christian missionaries the ones who demonized the very rights to which she referred? Don’t we all look upon that time in history with a deeply troubled sense of injustice?

She also brought up equality, but nothing she said spoke to that.

How can anyone champion the rights of any group when they are unwilling to support the most basic rights of the people they serve? Sadly, she has become the cliche politician, speaking from both sides of her mouth but ultimately making no sense.

We have been a couple for 17-plus years. In July, we went to California to finally become legally married. For more than 12 years we have lived in Hana, where we have family roots.

As members of her constituency who were born gay, we would like Carroll to know that it matters very much to us that we now have the same rights that she enjoys, and we are quite sure that we and those like us – some Native Hawaiian – do not threaten her or anyone’s religious or cultural rights.

We cannot support a politician who does not believe in basic human rights. Carroll has lost our vote.

Chris and Leokane

Harrington Pryor