Nhsc-v1-222

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nhsc-v1-222

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The way a person spells a languaqe indicates his respect for it. Evidently Tongan respect their language more than many people visiting or living in Hawai'i respect Hawaiian.

24/ Among the missionaries in Hawai'i, Reverend Lyons was one who did become very close to the Hawaiian people. His translations of hymns into Hawaiian show an adaptation of Hawaiian poetic thinking and lack the grammatical errors found in the work of some of the other missionaries. His defense of the Hawaiian language is a tribute to his concern for the Hawaiian people and proof that there were some of the missionary group who were true to their higher ideals.

25/ The concept of sending students to different countries was especially apropos for a country such as Hawai'i with its geographic and cultural isolations from the sources of world power. The concept might have also been effectively applied internally by the establishment of a policy of having different schools taught through the medium of different foreign languages. Such a policy would not only have produced a population with increased ability to function within the international sphere, but would also have served to protect the position of the indigenous language, since qraduates from different schools would share Hawaiian as their only common language. This policy could have been implemented in Hawai'i fairly early by encouraging the French Catholics to establish schools using French as alternatives to the American-sponsored schools. Later, when German and Japanese interests in Hawai'i became stronger, they too could have been encouraged to establish schools of this sort in the kingdom.

26/ At this point in Mr. Kimura's text, the following passage appears:

Despite this, it is still Department of Education policy to replace Hawaiian with English for the one remaining native-speaking group of children (on Ni'ihau). The children on this island are the target of this policy which many believed was being underscored by the current head of the Department of Education when she called for the formulation of a plan to "improve" education on the island. Ni'ihau children residing on the nearby island of Kaua'i are already targets of a federally financed SLEP program that specifically aims toward the replacement of Hawaiian with English.

It is included as a footnote because there was not time to receive a response from the head of the Department of Education prior to the Commission's printing deadline.

27/ Derek Bickerton and Carol Odo, General Phonology and Pidgin Syntax--Volume I of Three Volumes of Change and Variation in Hawaiian English, Final Report on National Science Foundation Grant No. GS-39748, Typescript (Honolulu: Social Sciences and Linguistics Institute, University of Hawaii, 1976). See, also, Derek Bickerton and William Wilson, "Pidgin Hawaiian," in Pidgin and Creole Languages: Essays in Memory of John E. Reinecke, ed, by Glenn Gilbert (in press).

28/ Hawaiian has not been the only target of language extermination in Hawai'i. There are no communities anywhere in Hawai'i outside Ni'ihau where children born in the islands grow up speaking a language other than some form of English as their strongest and primary tongue. This includes the native languages of such large immigrant groups as the

-p222-

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