Editor’s Scratchpad

Friday, July 27, 2001

Trask tells Canadians
to stay home

A friend has drawn attention to a newspaper article in the Ottawa Citizen in Canada in which Haunani-Kay Trask, the militant Hawaii-an activist, tells Canadians they are not wanted as visitors to Hawaii. "If 10 Canadians decided not to come to Hawaii because of something I said, I'd be very happy," Trask is quoted as saying. "I don't want people to come here. I'm sick of it. We're all sick of it."

When Canadians talked about how nice people in Hawaii are to visitors, Trask told an audience in Victoria, B.C., "Of course they're nice to you -- that's their job, they're supposed to be nice to you. That doesn't mean they really want you there."

With Hawaii's hotel occupancy down for the fifth month, with unemployment having inched up to 5 percent, with the state's economic indicators having fallen for nine months, and with the forecast for personal income having dropped to a 2.5 percent increase for the year, Trask's suggestion that Canadians stay home may not be welcomed by those who depend on tourism for a living.

--Richard Halloran

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