American Experience
Hawai'ians Remember Hawai'ians Remember

video | transcript

Grieving for Joe KahahawaiStories About the Massie CaseFear of the MilitaryPrejudice in the Haole CommunityThe Case's Impact on Hawai'iansAssessing the JuryCould It Happen Again?Racial TensionsA Threat to StatehoodInjustices Today

Nanette Napoleon (0:56)
A Threat to Statehood

Hawai'i had been trying to get statehood, seriously, from 1900 after. And so this was a big drawback for that -- put a big black eye on the statehood movement -- because now people in Washington were looking at Hawai'i and going, "Oh well they're out of control, we shouldn't grant statehood for them. They don't know how to run the police, [it's] inept. There is no security for white people. If we open statehood and more whites move in there's going to be lawlessness, and how can we let that happen." So there was a lot of concern, a lot of serious concern that it would stop statehood forever. But luckily it didn't, and the statehood movement went on, and in 1959 statehood was granted.

The Massie Affair American Experience PBS