Waikīkī usually serves as the hub of all island festivities – from the Spam Jam to the Hawaii 5-0's Sunset on the Beach season two premiere. This weekend, however, the favorite tourist hangout had a more serious tone.
Dozens showed up along Kalākaua Avenue with signs and shouted over honking car horns. Inspired by the Wall Street demonstrations in New York, the Honolulu group protested issues like social and economic inequality and "corporate greed." They were part of more than 900 cities across the globe that participated in the Occupy Wall Street movement over the weekend. People protested on other Hawai‘i islands as well.
When I think about all the news reports I've been seeing over the past month – things like shouting, violence, arrests and death threats come to mind. I hear noise and see anger. But when I look at this photo…
The Occupy Wall Street social movement washes up on Hawai‘i's sandy shores.
…all that commotion fades away. Silence takes over, and the photo speaks – more than a thousand words. No rioting or police involved; just a quiet sunrise gathering on the calm Hawaiian shores. It's the best image I've seen so far.
The picture is quickly traveling across the Internet, showing up on Facebook and Twitter. Thousands have already "LIKED" it and shared it with virtual friends on their Facebook walls. It came from Occupy Hawai‘i, the local group representing those from the state in support of the Occupy Wall Street social movement. One person reposted the picture and quoted American author and therapist Anodea Judith – "The cultural transformation from the love of power to the power of love is the drama of our time." So true.
The world is still waiting to see how the government will react to the thousands of people protesting. There's really no way for politicians to avoid them, with constant reports all over the news and most likely outside their office buildings. Maybe this photo will spark some reaction in them. Maybe it won't. But hopefully they see it somehow, even thousands of miles away. It holds a huge message from our tiny islands in the middle of the Pacific.
Photo Credit: Occupy Hawai‘i
October 18th, 2011