Indigenous activist on blocking Mauna Kea telescope: “If not now, when will we stand?”

Published on Jul 22, 2019
For ten years, activists and organizers have been fighting to block the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope atop the summit of the sacred mountain Mauna Kea. The proposed site for the 18-story telescope is the highest mountain in the world from the seafloor, a source of water for indigenous communities, and is known as one of Hawaii’s most spiritual mountains. The summit of the mountain is also part of Hawaiian ceded lands: land that is to be held in a public trust and is part of a conservation district. For six consecutive days, indigenous activists have been protesting on the land at the base of the mountain, rejecting new construction. On their sixth day of demonstrations, police arrested 33 community elders for blocking the main access road. Indigenous activist and organizer Pua Case spoke with Democracy Now! and described exactly what Mauna Kea means to the native Hawaiian community and how the construction of the latest telescope is “the one too many and the one too big.”

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