For all of your full-service snark needs there is no better site on The Internets than Taki’s Magazine.
Taki’s forte is achingly un-poltically correct posts laden with razor-slashing humor.
What’s not to like here?
Anyway, being frozen and landlocked in Minnesotastan I was completely unaware that Hawaii has become ground zero for science denial and fundamentalist religiosity.
It seems that a Nativist Religious Cult has succeeded in stymieing the brightest minds in astronomy by playing the heretofore unknown by me “The Mountain Is A Living Being So Sod Off Scientists” card.
And apparently, it is an effective card as well.
It seems a Major Scientific & Astronomical Undertaking, something called the “Thirty Meter Telescope” was supposed have been built atop the mountain Maunakea for all the Right Scientific Reasons but has been on hold for the past five years because if you can declare a person with male genitalia to be a woman with a penis and a nutsack then you can also make the legal (read political) case that a Big Ol’ Piece of Rock is an actual, literally living, sentient organism.
Hence the post at Taki’s titled Indigenous Basterds from which I give you following taste:
Ten years ago, an international coalition of astronomers announced plans to build a state-of-the-art, $1.5 billion telescope atop Mauna Kea. With a primary mirror measuring thirty meters across, the “TMT” (“Thirty Meter Telescope”—astronomers are nothing if not creative with their telescope names) would be a one-of-a-kind tool for exploring the universe and advancing our knowledge of our solar system and beyond. It’s projected to be eighteen stories tall, with a span of 1.44 acres. This’ll be one badass sumbitch. Let’s just say that if any shape-shifting aliens ever try to land here to mess with Kurt Russell, this baby’ll be all over it.
Science marches on!
Except there’s just one hitch. To the superstitious indigenous poi-eaters, Mauna Kea isn’t a mountain at all. It’s a god, an ancient deity. They literally see it as a living being (I’m not speaking of the grass and trees that grow on the mountain; I mean the mountain itself).
As local activist Joseph Kualii Lindsey Camara told the Hawaii Board of Land and Natural Resources during a TMT hearing in 2017,
I, and other lineal descendants always think of Mauna Kea as a living family member. It assures that I care for our Mauna as we would a kupuna (grandparent, elder), always with respect and as someone we turn to for wisdom. It assures that I consider the Mauna’s needs before my own. When I look at Mauna Kea I do not see an inanimate geologic mass with a good view, I see an elder who provides every resource needed for my safety, well-being and survival. I see my kupuna who should always be treated with the deepest respect and gratitude…. I view Mauna Kea as a temple, a family member, a living deity.
Using this argument, Hawaiian politicos and judges have for years been able to successfully obstruct the project.
It would be rude of Your Uncle Bruno to cut and paste anymore of this hilarious and “speaks Truth to Power” post by blogger David Cole so I’ll just give The Gentle Reader the obligatory and necessary “read the whole thing” advisement and again post the link right here.