Cowardly Christopher Deedy

By Richard Hamasaki
— In Memoriam, Kollin Kealiʻi “Mouse” Elderts (1988-2011)

On a clear morning on November 5th
Christopher Deedy* flew into town,

a federal agent assigned to protect
APEC dignitaries in Honolulu

for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation,
a serious façade and a farce for most.

APEC was staged to promote deception
and Special Agent Deedy felt right at home.

He checked into his room, called wife Stephanie,
and soon after walked into a bar in Waīkikī.

He drank and he ordered another and another,
He should have been happy, should have been humble,

but somehow his weapons made him invincible,
Special Agent Deedy with his gun and a knife.

With that first sip of his fateful drink,
he broke protocol and look a life.


Cowardly Christopher Deedy
are you a man or a government zombie?

O, Cowardly Christopher Deedy
if you’re a man you’d plead guilty,

sowing your seeds of sorrow
denying your drunken bravado,

Cowardly Christopher Deedy
confess and plead guilty.

Cowardly Christopher Deedy
pleading immunity is wrong.

Cowardly Christopher Deedy
you’re guilty in the second degree.

The end of the night led him astray.
He picked a fight in a bar that night.

He followed a young man to a fast-food joint
and inflamed things to the breaking point.

A fight ensued and Christopher Deedy
shot Kollin Elderts in the chest point-blank,

killing a man whose life was so young;
the Elderts’ family has lost a son.

You committed murder in Waikīkī,
shot down a brother who fanned your fury.

Drunk and on duty, you committed a crime
and now you must do your time.


Cowardly Christopher Deedy
are you a man or a government zombie?

Pleading immunity is wrong
‘cause Kollin Elderts is gone.

O, Cowardly Christopher Deedy
you’re guilty in the second degree.

Cowardly Christopher Deedy
are you a man or a government zombie?

Pleading immunity is wrong
‘cause Kollin Elderts is gone.

Cowardly Christopher Deedy,
you’re guilty in the second degree.

And an amplified poetry link, via soundcloud, that I recorded this summer:


I intend to explore the ways in which American civilization extends and imposes itself over “the other.” In Hawai’I, it was accomplished on several levels. The existence of these levels is a major source of contention within the contemporary Hawaiian sovereignty movement. The first level is the international legal level. Partially because of the recently rediscovered petitions registering resistance to annexation to the US, Hawai’I was “annexed” without a treaty – a nearly unprecedented event in world history, and the basis of the current argument that there was in fact no annexation. According to this argument, which is based on a conservative and compelling interpretation of international law, Hawai’i is – rather than an integrated, federated state or even a colony of the US – an occupied state, analogous to Iraq post-US invasion.  Another interpretation is that Hawai’I is a colonial possession of the US and should undergo decolonization procedures through the United Nations. A third interpretation is that Hawaiians need to accept the US control over Hawai’i, and aim for a status similar to that of native American tribal nations. This could be achieved through the currently-pending “Akaka Bill.” These disparate readings of Hawaiian history constitute what I have described as multiple realities, and result in a failure of the various factions in the Hawaiian movement to effectively communicate.

            In addition to this, there is a cultural colonialism that asserts itself in Hawai’i and pervades the cultural life of both Hawaiians and non-Hawaiians. I have documented many distortions of Hawaiian history, a history that was established as a history of the winners and cast the US in the role of savior of the helplessly backward native, in whose interest it was to be colonized/occupied. Policies banning Hawaiian language, simplifying and essentializing Hawaiian culture and containing it as a form of entertainment also served to undermine the native Hawaiian identity, as many Hawaiians attempted to learn their history and culture through books and schools.

            US presence in Hawai’i, therefore, fractures the consciousness of the occupied people, producing a type of tower of babel in which the lines of logic diverge and rarely have points of contact. Whether this was an intentional technique of control is unclear, as it was always(already) dependent on the response of the natives to the assertion of US cultural hegemony.

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