Hawaiian Sovereignty: One of the Original Hawaiian Flags: The Red Yellow and Green Hawaiian Flag
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Hawaii is an interesting place to live, to say the least! One of the things that makes it so special and interesting is the Hawaiian Culture. The land and the culture have a harmonic relationship, that is the stuff that legends are made of. In fact, there are all kinds of legends both about the land and the culture.
On the Big Island today, one of the most prevalent legends is the stories surrounding the Red Yellow and Green flag that has become so popular in the last ten years.
Unlce Gene Simeona is given credit for resurecting the "orginal flag" believed to be one of seven. The reason that the flag had to be resurected at all, takes us back to 1843.
In 1843 Lord George Paulet seized Hawaii for five months, and did his best to destroy all the Hawaiian flags. This act was not condoned by the British Royalty, but Paulet must have had a good number of ships in the area to occupy Hawaii. Apparently not all the flags were destroyed.
Still a lot of mystery surrounds this flag. There seems to be a point in the 1980's when the flag resurfaced, and all credit goes to Simeona. Apparently Simeona says he came across a descendant of Lord Paulet at ‘Iolani Palace who told him the modern Hawaiian flag is not the original.
That prompted Simeona to search the Hawai‘i State Archives, where he found the design, then reproduced it. From that time on, Simeona and his business partner Stan Fonseca have been promoting the flag in hopes that it’ll catch on as a fresh, noncolonial symbol of the restored Hawaiian kingdom.
According to Fonseca, the green in the flag represents the maka‘ainana (commoner) caste, the land and goodness; the red represents the landed konohiki who served the ali‘i, genealogy and strength; and the yellow represents the ali‘i, spirituality and alertness to danger. At the center of the flag is a shield bearing the coat of arms of the kanaka maoli, made up of kahili and crossed, pointed paddles that represent the voyaging history of Hawaiians, and the strength that the Hawaiian people hold.
This symbol is integral part of many Hawaiian symbols, found today on all kinds of state and county seals, and also the Hawaii Police Department badges, always right in the center.
What the flag means today, however, is a whole other story. It has become a rallying point for sovereignty movements, and to Simeona, his newly unearthed flag says, "We are not British. We are kanaka maoli." Hawaii has been through a lot in the last two hundred years, and the resurfacing of the flag has brought a good feeling to many.