Thirty Meter Telescope

I was originally neutral regarding the Thirty Meter Telescope and Mauna Kea Mountain situation prior to this year's protests. It escalated when stars Jason Momoa, Dwayne The Rock Johnson, and Jack Johnson went to Mauna Kea. Governor David Ige went to Mauna Kea. Tulsi Gabbard, Senator Lorraine Inouye, and Attorney General Claire Connors addressed the matter. Hawaiʻi Island has a special place in my heart! I've performed for live concerts and events out there!

Then, I saw posts by a passionate Mauna Kea protector that appeared controversial. I looked at the facts and arguments from both sides, and there was social media sensationalism and online noise pollution to look through.

TMT astronomers and advocates did their due legal process. Mauna Kea protectors voiced their thoughts in that same legal process. The result is that the TMT is permitted to be built on Mauna Kea. Mauna Kea protectors are now contesting it on Mauna Kea by blocking the TMT from being built on Mauna Kea! 

This situation struck a cord in me as a University of Hawaiʻi alumni at Kapiʻolani, law-abiding fourth-generation American, Hawaiʻi native, Freeman Foundation Scholarship recipient from Beijing Foreign Studies University, human beatbox, musician, mathematician, STEM advocate, and lover of mathematics. I personally know how good the world of mathematics is currently doing for me in my life and the lives of others. More good than not good!

This topic is complex as it is affecting the communities of Hawaiʻi nei, Mauna Kea, the United States of America, and TMT.

I will not go without saying that I am grateful for my mathematics education, audio engineering education, and study abroad scholarship in China! Yes, STEM and higher learning institutions do offer great solutions! With that said, it's difficult to see the Mauna Kea protectors' and TMT astronomers' points of view clash.

Regardless of which side we're on, TMT supporters and Mauna Kea protectors, we are not above the law of the state of Hawaiʻi and the United States of America that govern us all as a people. Neither should the Government be above its people. As Abraham Lincoln is quoted as saying, "government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

I can see that TMT can coexist on Mauna Kea. TMT on Mauna Kea is a great frontier for our descendants now, tomorrow and years to come! But TMT supporters, can we be kind to our TMT opposition?

I urge Mauna Kea protectors, please note when your protesters come and go, they have to abide by state laws that governs each and every American and Hawaiʻi citizen. TMT supporters and Mauna Kea protectors are not exempt of our governing laws.

I respect and "ai kea" about our people of Hawaiʻi Nei, Mauna Kea, TMT, the laws of the United States of America, and state of Hawaiʻi. Let's be civil, be kind to one another, and please take ownership of being law-abiding people! Mauna Kea protectors, please kokua yourselves and one another!! Our health is our utmost wealth that not even TMT can ever afford nor replace! -Jason Tom


9 comments

  • Marilena
    Marilena Romania
    I am really glad to know your opinion about that Telescope. and I am really happy that someone like you support TMT , Mauna Kea and STEM education. Me, being an outsider (not American) I see things different than those protesters , I just read and see the news about that Telescope and I was wondering why some of Hawaiian people are not agree with it. In my opinion, this Telescope is a good thing. I can understand that Hawaiians want that lans to be same as it was, but times change, people change and humans evoluate. Jason, I am very proud of you !

    I am really glad to know your opinion about that Telescope. and I am really happy that someone like you support TMT , Mauna Kea and STEM education. Me, being an outsider (not American) I see things different than those protesters , I just read and see the news about that Telescope and I was wondering why some of Hawaiian people are not agree with it. In my opinion, this Telescope is a good thing. I can understand that Hawaiians want that lans to be same as it was, but times change, people change and humans evoluate. Jason, I am very proud of you !

  • Ger
    Ger Hawaii & Finland
    Nice seeing your support of both science and culture! Thanks for sharing your well rounded perspective.

    Nice seeing your support of both science and culture! Thanks for sharing your well rounded perspective.

  • Amber
    Amber Keaau
    Mahalo nui for sharing your mana'o on this topic. Legal processes must be followed and the law must be enforced.

    Mahalo nui for sharing your mana'o on this topic. Legal processes must be followed and the law must be enforced.

  • Robin
    Robin Akau
    Aloha, Jason! Thank you for showing your support for this awesome program. In the end, it is all about our Keiki and how they interact with the world of tomorrow.

    Aloha, Jason! Thank you for showing your support for this awesome program. In the end, it is all about our Keiki and how they interact with the world of tomorrow.

  • Ana
    Ana Kona
    Thank you Jason for your support for TMT, STEAM & THINK education. IMUA TMT

    Thank you Jason for your support for TMT,
    STEAM & THINK education.
    IMUA TMT

  • Pat
    Pat Maui
    Good points. T.MT protestors are not reasonable. Not in the right. Indeed most are tied to a fable: The Kingdom. Queen Liliuokalani abdicated all claim to Hawaii in the name of the Kingdom on January 25th 1895. Prior to that the Republic of Hawaii received DeJure diplomatic recognition by all major countries of the world. These countries encompassing 80% of global population.. In the eyes of the world the Kingdom of Hawaii was extinguished. Land was 2/3 rds government owned 1/3rd private in 1880 under the Kingdom, and basically the same now. Majority of "protectors" claim land was stolen. By whom? All Hawaii citizens can vote today, they could not in 1890 under Kingdom law. Who stole land? Maunakea. Both King Kalakaua and Queen Liliuokalani accepted Maunakea as a site for astronomy. This is written record. King Kanehameha II abolished the older Hawaiian religion. Those who apply term sacred mountain are in friction with a determination by Hawaii's soveriegn worshipping a rock and sea, or lava was not true. Protectors are usurping the will of the Kingdom they proclaim to support. So in the old Kingdom and to today the State of Hawaii these people are usurping not only the State, but those who ruled the Kingdom. As for TMT. It will advance human knowledge. In my selfish point, that Earth type planet 31 light years away. A spectrograph through TMT will determine whether it has life, or not. I want to know.

    Good points. T.MT protestors are not reasonable. Not in the right. Indeed most are tied to a fable: The Kingdom.
    Queen Liliuokalani abdicated all claim to Hawaii in the name of the Kingdom on January 25th 1895. Prior to that the Republic of Hawaii received DeJure diplomatic recognition by all major countries of the world. These countries encompassing 80% of global population..
    In the eyes of the world the Kingdom of Hawaii was extinguished.
    Land was 2/3 rds government owned 1/3rd private in 1880 under the Kingdom, and basically the same now. Majority of "protectors" claim land was stolen. By whom? All Hawaii citizens can vote today, they could not in 1890 under Kingdom law. Who stole land?
    Maunakea. Both King Kalakaua and Queen Liliuokalani accepted Maunakea as a site for astronomy. This is written record.
    King Kanehameha II abolished the older Hawaiian religion. Those who apply term sacred mountain are in friction with a determination by Hawaii's soveriegn worshipping a rock and sea, or lava was not true.
    Protectors are usurping the will of the Kingdom they proclaim to support.
    So in the old Kingdom and to today the State of Hawaii these people are usurping not only the State, but those who ruled the Kingdom.
    As for TMT. It will advance human knowledge. In my selfish point, that Earth type planet 31 light years away. A spectrograph through TMT will determine whether it has life, or not. I want to know.

  • Gale
    Gale Oahu
    In a situation like this, a very publicized and sensitive matter, it is very important to view both sides. I’m glad you did. You did your research Jason. Not very many do. Some people make hasty decisions and it shouldn’t be based on feelings and emotions. You really took the time to see both sides and get all the facts. This TMT project will benefit so many people globally. Thank you for sharing your post and to bring awareness to your viewers.

    In a situation like this, a very publicized and sensitive matter, it is very important to view both sides. I’m glad you did. You did your research Jason. Not very many do. Some people make hasty decisions and it shouldn’t be based on feelings and emotions. You really took the time to see both sides and get all the facts. This TMT project will benefit so many people globally. Thank you for sharing your post and to bring awareness to your viewers.

  • Sandy Lee
    Sandy Lee Maui
    For, or against, thank you for stepping back and looking at the facts. So many people hear rhetoric that aligns with their desires so they perpetuate these mistruths. It's cool to hate, cool to disparage, so everyone bandwagons on. If you don't agree you're threatened and bullied. Personally I agree with you, TMT should be built, for reasons I'm sure you've discovered for yourself. Either way though thanks for not just following along in the crowd of popularity and separating facts from fiction for yourself. Thanks for not allowing your voice to be shut down by bullies.

    For, or against, thank you for stepping back and looking at the facts. So many people hear rhetoric that aligns with their desires so they perpetuate these mistruths. It's cool to hate, cool to disparage, so everyone bandwagons on. If you don't agree you're threatened and bullied.

    Personally I agree with you, TMT should be built, for reasons I'm sure you've discovered for yourself. Either way though thanks for not just following along in the crowd of popularity and separating facts from fiction for yourself. Thanks for not allowing your voice to be shut down by bullies.

  • Chat
    Chat Kailua, Oahu
    Perfectly stated,

    Perfectly stated,

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