Latest News and Comment from Education

Thursday, February 11, 2021

CURMUDGUCATION: HI: A Houseless Village

CURMUDGUCATION: HI: A Houseless Village
HI: A Houseless Village

 It started with this tweet:

Reactions were peak tl;dr, with most people not making it past the tweet. But click past to the story, and then on to the contest itself, and you quickly see there' a lot to this.

I'm no expert on Hawaii. My ex-wife lived there for a few years and my sister-in-law and her husband lived on O'ahu for a while. My wife and I visited for about a week. We stayed in a condo near the beach up near the zoo, and is our habit, we took our rental car on some road trips to see the rest of the place. Which on O'ahu, once you get out of city traffic, doesn't take all that long. It's a place of great contrast. Travel up the west side of the island, and you soon arrive at the tip that looks like the end of the world; exposed to the brunt of the ocean, just past the government space-listening station, the road just ends in a patch of lava. Rough paths and an eerie peaceful quiet, not twenty miles away from a roaring metropolis. On the way there, you go past some rough patches of poverty. We would have driven past the community in this story without knowing it. But as I said--no expert, which is something I share with many folks drive-by commenting on this. It's not just homeless kids. It's a whole community.

That community is Pu‘uhonua O Wai‘anae (Refuge of Wai'anae), a community of about 250 houseless people, characterized by resident Twinkle Borge as  "Not homeless-- a village without a place."

Hawaii is a tough place to be homeless. On the one hand, the weather is generally on your side, but on the other, local authorities are not. While we were there, an early morning walk would get you free admission to the morning rousting of the homeless along Waikiki. Pu‘uhonua O Wai‘anae's CONTINUE READING: CURMUDGUCATION: HI: A Houseless Village