Surfers For Mauna Kea Unite in Solidarity
The surfing community came together on Sunday, Aug. 11, 2019, to show its solidarity with those protesting the construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) atop Mauna Kea.
Thousands of surfers across the world lent their voices on social media Sunday to raise awareness of the struggle to “protect Mauna Kea” from further development.
Using the hashtags #SurfersForMaunaKea and #MaukaToMakai ocean enthusiasts posted images of themselves supporting the protection of Mauna Kea from all over the world. Their solidarity with the kia‘i (guardians) of Mauna Kea illustrates how the mountain and oceans are all connected, according to a press release.
Prominent Native Hawaiian surfers such as two-time World Surf League (WSL) World Longboard Champion Kelia Moniz, as well as Championship Tour competitors Seth Moniz and Ezekiel Lau, posted their support for the protection of Mauna Kea and their opposition of the Thirty Meter Telescope on Instagram.
Two-Time WSL Champion John John Florence, who is a resident of the North Shore of O‘ahu, also joined in the #SurfersForMaunaKea campaign.
Protect Mauna Kea will be organizing paddle outs at various beaches on Aug. 25, 2019, to increase awareness of the protection of Mauna Kea and unify wave riders and kia‘i, the release continued.
Several politicians and celebrities have visited the mountain and offered their support for the protestors since the demonstration began in mid-July. Among those included are US Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and actor Jason Momoa, both of whom were on the mountain Sunday when the Jam 4 Mauna Kea event streamed worldwide across the internet.