Factual vs. aspirational answers to the Census race (and gender) question(s) -- special focus on Native Hawaiians. Race statistics are badly skewed when researchers count mixed-race respondents solely as members of the race favored by respondent or researcher. The race question on Census surveys must be asked more precisely so that respondents do not answer aspirationally while news media and researchers assume they answered factually. Aspirational answers should be expected from mixed-race minorities who are politically active in asserting minority rights or demanding racial entitlements. Mixed race respondents should be asked to estimate percentage of each race in ancestry.


by Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D.

SUMMARY

Census questions about race should be written in a way which clarifies that respondents are being asked about the facts of their biological heritage (check the boxes for all the races you know are part of your biological ancestry) rather than their psychological/social affiliations or aspirations (check the box for the race you feel most closely affiliated with on account of upbringing or current lifestyle). Perhaps both questions should be asked. Mixed-race respondents should be asked to estimate the percentage of each. Current single-question ambiguity between fact vs. aspiration skews statistical medians toward aspirational identities in geographic areas where mixed-race minorities have large numbers of individuals engaged in political activity to assert minority rights. People who are strongly committed to a race-based political agenda are likely to say they are solely of their favorite race. Such aspirational skewing causes inaccurate media reporting by statistically unsophisticated reporters relying on Census Bureau news releases having weak or non-existent plain-English disclaimers that data may be skewed by aspirational self-identification. Even mathematically sophisticated scholars might misinterpret aspirational identity as though it is biological fact unless they are reminded about the ambiguity.

Special attention is given to the "Native Hawaiian" category, because nearly all respondents are of mixed race and the great majority of individuals have most of their ancestry being Asian or European rather than Hawaiian. Politically-inspired aspirational responses by "Native Hawaiians" to the Census race question, marking only the "Native Hawaiian" box to assert racial pride, have produced absurd official results such as 80,000 "pure" Hawaiians are living in Hawaii. Researchers, seeking to bolster applications for government and philanthropic grants to study or provide treatment for alleged racial disparities, count anyone with any amount of Hawaiian native ancestry as being fully Native Hawaiian and do not count them also as being any of their other heritages, even when the percentage of native heritage is very small. Thus propagandists are able to make use of Census data whose aspirational answers to the race question are intentionally misinterpreted as though they are biologically factual. Political propagandists say Native Hawaiians need political autonomy to ensure that government resources are directed toward their special needs, citing Census data where there is no warning about the ambiguity between aspirational vs. factual identity. Powerful race-focused institutions say they need monetary grants to study or overcome alleged racial disparities. Nearly all Native Hawaiians are of mixed race. But every Native Hawaiian with a medical or social problem gets a full tally mark added to the Native Hawaiian category for that problem while not even a partial tally mark is awarded to any of the victim's other races.

Whether knowingly or unknowingly, the Census Bureau has become an accomplice to statistical malpractice or outright scams which are enabled by Census questions whose ambiguity allows researchers and news media to misinterpret aspirational responses as though they represent biological fact.

To achieve credibility and political neutrality the Census Bureau should make two improvements:
(1) Write the race (and gender) question(s) to specify that responses should be based on biological fact; or better yet, bifurcate the question(s) into one factual and one aspirational question; and ask multiracial respondents for estimated percentages of ancestry. If the Census Bureau decides the additional wording of the race question is too burdensome for the decennial, then the more-detailed American Community Survey could be used, or the topic could be addressed in a special supplement in the Current Population Survey for one month each year.
(2) News releases for non-academic readers; as well as data tables, graphs, and verbal summaries for scholarly use; should have prominently-placed disclaimers, in plain English or technical language appropriate to the expected audience. The disclaimers should note the fact that responses arising from social/psychological aspiration might have caused skewing of the data in a way that does not accurately reflect biological fact, especially in the case of multiracial or transgender respondents.

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LIST OF SECTION HEADINGS IN THE ORDER THEY APPEAR

DISAGGREGATED DATA FOR EACH RACE HAVING ITS OWN CHECK-BOX SHOULD BE RELEASED PROMPTLY, WHILE AGGREGATED DATA FOR LARGER GROUPS OF RACES SHOULD WAIT TO BE COMPILED AND RELEASED LATER.

DISCUSSION OF THE GENDER QUESTION AS AN INTRODUCTION TO THE MORE COMPLEX RACE QUESTION.

THE CENSUS QUESTION ON RACE IS TOO AMBIGUOUS, LEADING SOME RESPONDENTS TO ANSWER ASPIRATIONALLY WHILE MEDIA AND SCHOLARS INTERPRET THE DATA TO BE FACTUAL

THE CENSUS QUESTION ON RACE SHOULD BE CLEAR THAT IT IS ASKING FOR FACTUAL INFORMATION ABOUT BIOLOGICAL ANCESTRY. OR BETTER YET: THE QUESTION SHOULD BE BIFURCATED INTO ONE FACTUAL QUESTION AND ONE ASPIRATIONAL QUESTION. MULTIRACIAL RESPONDENTS SHOULD ALSO BE ASKED TO PROVIDE AN ESTIMATED PERCENTAGE OF AFFILIATION WITH EACH RACE, TOTALING 100%

MEDIA AND RESEARCHERS OFTEN CHOOSE TO ALLOCATE A MULTIRACIAL RESPONDENT'S DATA 100% TO A RACE FAVORED BY THE REPORTER OR SCHOLAR EVEN WHEN RESPONDENT HAS TRUTHFULLY DESCRIBED THE FACTS ABOUT THE MULTIPLE RACIAL COMPONENTS IN HIS ANCESTRY. A ONE-DROP RULE IS OFTEN USED, WHICH ALLOCATES THE DATA ABOUT A MULTIRACIAL VICTIM'S DISEASES OR SOCIAL DYSFUNCTIONS TO AN INDIVIDUAL RACE. THE ONE-DROP RULE MAXIMIZES THE COUNT OF NATIVE HAWAIIAN VICTIMS AND MINIMIZES THE COUNT OF CAUCASIAN VICTIMS. THE CURE FOR THIS STATISTICAL MALPRACTICE IS TO ASK RESPONDENTS TO SPECIFY A PERCENTAGE NEXT TO EACH RACE BOX THEY MARK, SO THAT ANALYSTS CAN AWARD FRACTIONAL TALLY MARKS TO EACH RACE A RESPONDENT CHOOSES RATHER THAN A FULL TALLY MARK TO THE SINGLE ASPIRATIONAL RACE WHICH RESPONDENT OR RESEARCHER PREFERS TO GIVE CREDIT TO.

WHY BLOOD QUANTUM PERCENTAGES FOR EACH RACIAL COMPONENT ARE IMPORTANT DATA WHICH THE CENSUS BUREAU SHOULD COLLECT FOR MIXED-RACE RESPONDENTS, ESPECIALLY NATIVE HAWAIIANS

"NATIVE HAWAIIAN" HAS PERHAPS THE MOST OUTRAGEOUSLY SKEWED STATISTICS AMONG ALL RACES BECAUSE NEARLY ALL NATIVE HAWAIIANS ARE RACIALLY MIXED, AND BECAUSE OF RESPONDENT ASPIRATION TO IDENTIFY ONLY THEIR FAVORED RACE, AND BECAUSE OF POLITICALLY OR ECONOMICALLY MOTIVATED STATISTICAL SKEWING OF RACE BY RESEARCHERS EMPLOYED BY RACE-FOCUSED INSTITUTIONS, MEDIA, OR GRANT-SEEKING USERS OF CENSUS DATA.

THE CENSUS BUREAU SHOULD INCLUDE A DISCLAIMER WITH EACH VERBAL SUMMARY OR DATA TABLE INVOLVING RACE OR GENDER, WARNING THAT RESULTS MAY BE SKEWED BECAUSE ASPIRATIONAL SELF-IDENTIFICATION MIGHT NOT ALIGN WITH BIOLOGICAL FACT.

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TWO ISSUES TO BE DISCUSSED

A minor issue I will discuss first concerns the schedule for the release of media reports about data from the decennial Census. The Census Bureau seems to favor early reporting about aggregated racial categories (e.g. "Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islanders") that were available before 2000, instead of simple disaggregated racial categories (e.g. "Native Hawaiian") that were first offered in decennial 2000. It is logically peculiar, and causes confusion in the media, to first release data from aggregated categories that require combining simpler components, and then waiting a long time to release the disaggregated data for those simpler components.

The major issue I address for the remainder of my comments is whether and how Census questions and media releases about race should be improved in order to distinguish between fact and aspiration. The problem is that respondents report how they identify themselves, but the question is worded in an ambiguous way which causes confusion for both respondents and consumers of data concerning whether the response is based on biological ancestry, vs. social/psychological affiliation or aspiration. The ambiguity of the question encourages politically active mixed-race members of minority groups to report themselves as belonging solely to their favored racial group when in fact they belong to several. The group they choose to report as their primary or sole affiliation might be in fact only a small percentage of their biological heritage. Unsophisticated news reporters, and also more-sophisticated researchers doing data analysis regarding medical, economic, or anthropological issues, are likely to assume that data about race accurately reflect biological heritage when in fact the data are badly skewed by respondents who self-identify according to their psychological/social, or aspirational, affiliations. The data are also skewed by researchers who feel a need to increase the apparent sample-size of minority groups and therefore use a "one-drop" rule that maximizes the count of Native Hawaiian victims while simultaneously minimizing the count of Caucasian victims. The issue of aspirational skewing of data will be explored later in detail.

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DISAGGREGATED DATA FOR EACH RACE HAVING ITS OWN CHECK-BOX SHOULD BE RELEASED PROMPTLY, WHILE AGGREGATED DATA FOR LARGER GROUPS OF RACES SHOULD WAIT TO BE COMPILED AND RELEASED LATER.

Disaggregated data for racial categories which have their own separate check boxes should be released promptly, very soon after the survey is completed, while aggregated data for larger combined groups can wait until later. It is logically peculiar, and causes confusion in the media, to first release data from aggregated categories that require combining simpler components, and then waiting a long time to release the disaggregated data for those simpler components. Perhaps the scheduling reflects bureaucratic inertia. It seems easier to release data for the same categories that were used in previous decades -- simply re-use the same press releases after substituting the new numbers in place of the old numbers.

For example data releases from Census 2000 and Census 2010 were scheduled in such a way that aggregated data for "Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders" or "Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders" were released fairly early, while disaggregated data for "Native Hawaiians" were not released until approximately two years later.

The practical consequence was that newspapers in Hawaii began reporting erroneous "facts" about the number of "Native Hawaiians" in Hawaii (or nationwide), or their percentage of the population, or their household income, longevity, diabetes, heart disease, etc.; because the news reporters failed to recognize the difference between "Native Hawaiians" (not yet reported at that time) vs. "Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders" (newly reported with high publicity by the Census Bureau at that time). A prominently-placed warning about this in Census Bureau news releases could have helped prevent erroneous reporting.

I seem to recall that early newspaper reports in 2000 and 2010 said Native Hawaiians were 26% of Hawaii's population (because "other Pacific Islanders" were being included in the aggregated data), although many months later, when disaggregated data were finally reported, the correct figure turned out to be 20% or 21%.

Why do aggregated data including other Pacific islanders make Native Hawaiians look like worse victims than they actually are? Poorly educated impoverished people with severe health problems are allowed to come to Hawaii from Micronesia and other Pacific Islands without a visa under terms of a "compact of free association." Their main purpose for coming is to get generous schooling, medical, and welfare benefits paid for by the U.S. or by Hawaii's welfare system. Their Census data reflecting poverty, disease, large household size, etc. get aggregated with Native Hawaiian data in the "Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander" category, leading unsophisticated media to report the more negative health and income statistics of the aggregated group as though they are the (disaggregated more positive) statistics for Native Hawaiians that will not actually be released until many months later.

Regarding Census 2000 -- I published a webpage providing a spreadsheet showing how many people in each State checked the box for Native Hawaiian. The webpage describes how difficult it was to get this information, even in December 2001 twenty months after Census Day. At the bottom the webpage explains the convoluted process necessary if readers wanted to replicate or reassemble my spreadsheet information for themselves (There was a similar situation in Census 2010, although I did not produce a spreadsheet or webpage for that one).
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/population2000.html

It is just plain silly to report aggregated data earlier than disaggregated data when the specific racial identifier "Native Hawaiian" is available as a checkbox on the Census form, while there was no checkbox for "Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander." When there is a specific checkbox for "Native Hawaiian" there should be no delay at all to find out how many people checked that box (i.e., the category which the Census calls "Native Hawaiian alone or in combination with other races") -- but in both 2000 and 2010 I had to wait until about 2 years after the survey to get the answer to that simple question: How many people checked the box for "Native Hawaiian?" In both 2000 and 2010 that question had enormous political importance because of the "Akaka bill" pending in Congress that would have granted federal recognition to "Native Hawaiians" as an Indian tribe (race alone or in combination with no minimum native quantum), but which rigorously excluded anyone lacking Hawaiian native ancestry even if they were "other Pacific Islanders" (e.g. Polynesians, Melanesians, or Micronesians). According to Census 2000 the Akaka tribe could include all 401,000 Native Hawaiians nationwide (race alone or in combination), while Census 2010 counted 527,000 who had checked the box (plus many more who did not check the box but would have come forward with alleged genealogies if the tribe had gotten recognition with accompanying government handouts).

The reporting of aggregated data long before disaggregated data will be enormously more troublesome in Hawaii if the Census Bureau begins counting Filipinos as "Pacific Islanders" rather than as "Asians" as some news publications have recently reported. That's because Filipinos are now the second-largest ethnicity in Hawaii (outranking Japanese), behind only "Caucasian." Some users of Census data might say that logical consistency requires that because "Asian" is disaggregated into Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, etc.; therefore "Caucasian" should be disaggregated into French, German, Italian, Polish, British, etc. and perhaps British should be further disaggregated into English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh. However, a contrary observation is that the various Asian ethnicities need disaggregation because they maintain large cultural differences against other Asian ethnicities in American society, whereas the various Caucasian ethnicities are less zealous about preserving their cultural differences against other Caucasian ancestries within American society and thus can reasonably remain aggregated as Caucasian. Are the lifestyle differences between ethnic Japanese vs. ethnic Chinese vs. ethnic Koreans in American society significantly greater than the lifestyle difference between Irish vs. Germans vs. Italians? The Census Bureau needs good advice from experts to decide whether each Caucasian subgroup needs its own check-box.

I might add, based on personal experience, that training for enumerators in Census 2000 did not make clear whether someone whose heritage was directly from Spain but not from Mexico or Cuba or Puerto Rico should answer "yes" to the question "Are you Hispanic?" In Hawaii, with its large Filipino population, this issue of how to classify ancestry directly from Spain might have caused confusion because of the history of centuries of colonization of the Philippines by Spain. Many ethnic Filipinos in Hawaii, speaking to Census interviewers, emphasize that their ancestry is both Filipino and Spanish, as though the ancestry from Spain makes them feel superior to Filipinos with no ancestry from Spain, even though the ancestry from Spain happened several centuries ago and specific names of ancestors have been long forgotten in family legend and lore.

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DISCUSSION OF THE GENDER QUESTION AS AN INTRODUCTION TO THE MORE COMPLEX RACE QUESTION.

Although my comments will focus on race, and especially the category "Native Hawaiian", the analogous situation regarding gender is worth mentioning because it seems simpler (apparently there are only two choices?) and because it is being widely discussed in news reports, state legislatures, and street protests.

Some highly publicized cases come quickly to mind, illustrating the importance of clarifying and perhaps bifurcating (see below) the gender question regarding whether gender is defined biologically (What was your gender at birth?) or aspirationally (How do you identify your gender today?) when a respondent is asked to choose one: male or female. The Census Bureau must be crystal clear about factual vs. aspirational identity in its own policies, its training manuals for survey-takers, its instructions for respondents, and its reports of results for media and scholars.

** Bradley Edward Manning joined the Army in 2007, was deployed to Iraq in 2009, stole massive amounts of military and diplomatic secrets in computerized files and gave them to Wikileaks in 2010, was arrested and imprisoned in 2010, pled guilty and was sentenced in 2013, announced the name change to Chelsea Elizabeth Manning the day after sentencing, had a legally registered change of name in 2014 and began hormone treatment in prison. In 2016 the Army granted Manning's request for gender transition surgery following a hunger strike but refused Manning's request to change gender on birth certificate. Manning's sentence was commuted by President Obama in 2017 at the end of his term. Manning is no longer in the Army and therefore no longer eligible for sex change surgery, hormone treatment, or psychotherapy at the Army's expense.

** Bruce Jenner, Olympic decathlon champion in 1974 and cereal box superstar, publicly came out as transgender woman in 2015 and announced "her" new legally-changed name Caitlyn Marie Jenner.

** In 2016 North Carolina enacted the "bathroom bill" requiring transgenders to use the toilet facilities and sports changing-rooms designated for their gender at birth rather than their self-identified gender; but due to massive adverse publicity and boycotts against the State by powerful groups, the legislation was partially repealed in 2017. If we acknowledge that a person has a right to self-identify his/her own gender, then should we not also acknowledge that the large number of other people sharing facilities where genitalia are exposed have a right to expect that their own way of identifying the gender of fellow users of those facilities, and their own privacy rights, will be respected?

** Legislation enacted in Hawaii in 2015 allows a transgender to get a reissued birth certificate to reflect their new status even if they have not undergone surgery. Most transgenders (aspirational) are probably not transsexual (surgical alteration of genitalia).

How should life insurance actuaries and underwriters, and medical/sociological researchers, utilize Census data about male vs. female longevity or disease when it is unclear whether respondents were self-reporting their gender at birth or their aspirational transgender identity? There is no doubt that Manning and Jenner would today self-identify on Census questionnaires as female without any hesitation or guilt about misrepresentation. The enormous media attention and political activism about the North Carolina bathroom bill show that there are large numbers of activists who are transgender themselves or at least support that agenda; thus the numbers might be large enough to affect Census statistics if people report aspirational gender rather than gender at birth. The fact that the Hawaii law got enacted allowing people to change the gender on their birth certificates shows that there is decisive political support for making it legal for people to change official government records to incorporate false statements which will be construed as fact by researchers unfamiliar with the individuals whose anonymously compiled data they are analyzing.

The Census question on gender needs to be very clearly worded; perhaps bifurcated: (a) What was your gender at birth? [male or female] (b) What gender do you now identify yourself as? Some political activists for transgender rights say there are more genders than male or female. Perhaps the choices offered to respondents for (b) should include at least [male, female, transgender male, transgender female]. In 2014 Facebook had a list of 58 gender options to choose among; the list is included in an ABC News report at
http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2014/02/heres-a-list-of-58-gender-options-for-facebook-users/

Self-identification of gender for transgender people results in bad Census statistics when the stats are used for medical research about diseases which are highly correlated with, or perhaps caused by, biological factors such as possession or lack of the Y (male) chromosome. The frequency of ovarian cancer, uterine fibroids, or hysterectomy might appear significantly lower in socially permissive urban areas where there might be an unusually high percentage of respondents like Manning or Jenner who were born as male but who are now self-identifying in Census surveys as female and who, because they say they are female, are asked whether they have experienced female medical problems. Similarly the frequency of prostate cancer in socially permissive urban areas might appear lower than in more conservative rural areas because there might be a significant percentage of respondents who were born as female (with no prostate) but who are now self-identified on the survey questionnaire as (transgender) male.

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THE CENSUS QUESTION ON RACE IS TOO AMBIGUOUS, LEADING SOME RESPONDENTS TO ANSWER ASPIRATIONALLY WHILE MEDIA AND SCHOLARS INTERPRET THE DATA TO BE FACTUAL

The Census Bureau relies on respondents' self-identification of race and gender. Respondents answer Census questions based on respondents' social or psychological feeling about their own identity; or in some cases they might answer based on personal aspirations or political agendas for a favored minority which may or may not be part of their biological ancestry. However, researchers who analyze Census data for scientific purposes might incorrectly assume the data are scientific facts about respondents when actually the data may contain large components of information which is false in biological fact even though true in emotional aspirational self-identification.

Questions asked on Census forms should be more clear about whether respondents are expected to answer based on scientific fact or whether they are being asked to respond based on personal feelings. Perhaps questions on race or gender might be asked twice -- once where respondents are asked to respond based on scientific fact and again where respondents are asked to respond based on personal aspiration. This distinction is especially important regarding data for people of mixed race, and for transgenders, and for individuals of minority groups who are demanding special rights based on race or gender and may be expected to skew their Census responses in a way that furthers their political agendas.

The gender issue has gotten enormous public attention, so it was good to begin with that one as an example of the need to differentiate between biological fact vs. social/psychological aspiration in asking Census questions and creating news releases. But the issues of ambiguous questions and self-identification regarding race are far more complex and difficult for the Census than the issues regarding gender.

During the years when slavery or Jim Crow laws prevailed in the Southern states, light-skinned Negroes might successfully "pass" as white, and might even marry a Caucasian spouse and produce babies whose birth certificate would say "white." Light-skinned Negroes might have gotten their light skin because their father or grandfather was a white slave-owner who mated with a Negro slave. Thus the child or grandchild was factually of mixed race, and could aspirationally choose to identify as Caucasian on Census forms, voter registrations, government documents, and social clubs.

In recent years celebrity transracial cases have received high profile public attention where people born as Caucasians have self-identified as minorities either for political purposes or to gain status or economic advantage on account of "affirmative action" programs in employment, college admissions, college scholarships, or political activism. Celebrity transracial cases indicate the likelihood of many other transracial cases which never get attention.

** Rachel Dolezal's parents were both Caucasian with no known African ancestry, but she used makeup, hair styling, and social affiliations to create the appearance of being Black. Dolezal rose to a leadership position in the NAACP based on successfully "passing" as her aspirational transracial Black identity.

** Ward Churchill, a Caucasian man, chose to become an imposter Native American, claiming to be an enrolled member of the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians; although that tribe said he was not. He published numerous academic papers on Indian history and Indian rights. He became a professor at University of Colorado (Boulder) 1990-2007, where he rose to became a tenured full professor of ethnic studies and chairman of the department. His comments about the victims of the World Trade Center became a public scandal. The university fired him citing academic misconduct (plagiarism) in his research, but the real reason for firing him was undoubtedly his scandalous anti-American public statements and the evidence that his claim to Indian ancestry was fraudulent.

** Elizabeth Warren, a Caucasian and a Harvard Professor, won election to the U.S. Senate from Massachusetts. According to footnoted information in Wikipedia: "In April 2012, the Boston Herald sparked a campaign controversy when it reported that from 1986 to 1995 Warren had listed herself as a minority in the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) directories. Harvard Law School had publicized her minority status in response to criticisms about a lack of faculty diversity ... Scott Brown, her Republican opponent in the Senate race, speculated that she had fabricated Native American heritage to gain advantage in the job market. ... Her brothers defended her, stating that they "grew up listening to our mother and grandmother and other relatives talk about our family's Cherokee and Delaware heritage" She was quoted in news reports as saying that her "high cheek bones" lent credence to her claim of Indian ancestry. President Trump derisively called her "Pocahontas" and a comedian then said Trump owes an apology to Pocahontas for likening her to Warren.

Minority transracial self-identification by 100% Caucasians is attention-grabbing, but is only the tip of the iceberg. There are far more numerous cases of mixed-race people who choose to identify as only one race while denying all others in their ancestral heritage, in the same way as people embellish their work history or academic achievements on their resumes when applying for jobs.

** Barack Obama's mother was Caucasian and his father was African, making Barack 50/50. He self-identified as Black, not only because people categorized him as Black on account of his skin color, hair and facial features, but also because it was socially and politically advantageous for a Harvard law student, professor, "community organizer" and leftwing activist in Chicago.

** Google describes golf champion Tiger Woods: "His father, Earl, was of African-American, Chinese and Native American descent. His mother, Kultida, is of Thai, Chinese and Dutch descent. [Tiger called himself] "Cablinasian" [which] was [his way to make] a composite of Caucasian, black, Indian and Asian."

Census forms become public after 72 years, so we must wait to track the factual or aspirational responses to the race question provided by Obama, Woods, and their parents, grandparents or custodial caregivers as each decennial form eventually becomes available. One thing is clear: people today feel free to change their gender and/or their race when such changes would have been unthinkable in previous decades.

Census data today are becoming increasingly less reliable for scientific or policy analysis unless the Census Bureau finds a way to write questions and report responses that distinguish clearly between psychological aspiration vs. biological fact.

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THE CENSUS QUESTION ON RACE SHOULD BE CLEAR THAT IT IS ASKING FOR FACTUAL INFORMATION ABOUT BIOLOGICAL ANCESTRY. OR BETTER YET: THE QUESTION SHOULD BE BIFURCATED INTO ONE FACTUAL QUESTION AND ONE ASPIRATIONAL QUESTION. MULTIRACIAL RESPONDENTS SHOULD ALSO BE ASKED TO PROVIDE AN ESTIMATED PERCENTAGE OF AFFILIATION WITH EACH RACE, TOTALING 100%

Nearly everyone who self-identifies as "Native Hawaiian" is actually of mixed race, and perhaps 3/4 of them each has more than 3/4 of his/her ancestry that is not Native Hawaiian but Asian or European. We don't really know about percentages of native Hawaiian blood quantum because it is politically incorrect to ask people for their percentage, and also because the tycoons of Hawaiian racial entitlement programs know that such information would show their victimhood data in grant applications to be bogus. Many "Native Hawaiians" with low native blood quantum but high aspiration for a political agenda choose to respond to Census questionnaires by marking only the one box for Native Hawaiian when in fact they could (and should) check several race boxes.

As a result of emotional or politically motivated aspirational self-reporting, tens of thousands of mixed-race Native Hawaiians checked only the one box for "Native Hawaiian." Both Census 2000 and Census 2010 "counted" more than 80,000 "pure" Native Hawaiians living in Hawaii. Everyone acknowledges that is absurd. A televised docudrama was turned into a book in 2003 and then also became a sort of opera. The tear-jerker "Then There Were None" traces the decline of "pure" Native Hawaiians from perhaps a million in 1778 all the way down to only 5,000, due to poverty and disease. So which is it -- eighty thousand in years 2000 and 2010 or only five thousand ? Somebody is lying, or else the Census race question is worded poorly. The Census needs to ask the race question in an unambiguous way that leaves no doubt what the responses mean. See my book review at
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/lindseynoyesthennone.html

A very simple and short improvement to the race question would clarify that respondents are being asked a factual question to identify all the races they know are in their ancestry. Q: Please check the boxes for all the racial groups you know are part of your biological ancestry.

A better improvement would bifurcate the question to allow both a factual and an aspirational response: Q (a) Here is a list of races. Please check the boxes for all the races you know are part of your biological ancestry. Q (b) Here is a list of races. Please check one or two or three of the boxes to choose the race(s) you feel most affiliated with, perhaps because of how you grew up or your current lifestyle.

The best improvement, that would generate enormously valuable data, would not only bifurcate the race question into separate factual and aspirational questions, it would also ask for percentage allocations: Q (a) Here is a list of races. Please fill in all the ovals for the races you know are part of your biological ancestry. Then next to each oval you selected, write in the box your best estimate of that race's percentage of your ancestry (The percentages should add up to 100). Q (b) Here is a list of races. Please fill in the ovals for one or two or three of the race(s) you feel most affiliated with, perhaps because of how you grew up or your current lifestyle. Then next to each oval you selected, write in the box your best estimate of that race's percentage of your affiliation (The percentages should add up to 100).

The issue of native Hawaiian blood quantum percentages is extremely important (see below). Unfortunately the Census Bureau questionnaires do not deal with it at all. Researchers also do not deal with it. The Census Bureau would render enormous help to researchers and to political policy-makers if you could find a way to gather such information. If only one question can be asked, it should be the factual question about biological ancestry: See question (a) above. But if space allows, the emotional, aspirational affiliation question (b) should also be asked, not only because it provides valuable information for researchers but also because it gives respondents a way to "blow off steam" or express their feelings so they can give a factually accurate answer to question (a) without feeling like traitors to their favorite race. Their attitude might be "I admit I'm a poi dog [mixed race], but I feel like a true kanaka maoli."

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MEDIA AND RESEARCHERS OFTEN CHOOSE TO ALLOCATE A MULTIRACIAL RESPONDENT'S DATA 100% TO A RACE FAVORED BY THE REPORTER OR SCHOLAR EVEN WHEN RESPONDENT HAS TRUTHFULLY DESCRIBED THE FACTS ABOUT THE MULTIPLE RACIAL COMPONENTS IN HIS ANCESTRY. A ONE-DROP RULE IS OFTEN USED, WHICH ALLOCATES THE DATA ABOUT A MULTIRACIAL VICTIM'S DISEASES OR SOCIAL DYSFUNCTIONS TO AN INDIVIDUAL RACE. THE ONE-DROP RULE MAXIMIZES THE COUNT OF NATIVE HAWAIIAN VICTIMS AND MINIMIZES THE COUNT OF CAUCASIAN VICTIMS. THE CURE FOR THIS STATISTICAL MALPRACTICE IS TO ASK RESPONDENTS TO SPECIFY A PERCENTAGE NEXT TO EACH RACE BOX THEY MARK, SO THAT ANALYSTS CAN AWARD FRACTIONAL TALLY MARKS TO EACH RACE A RESPONDENT CHOOSES RATHER THAN A FULL TALLY MARK TO THE SINGLE ASPIRATIONAL RACE WHICH RESPONDENT OR RESEARCHER PREFERS TO GIVE CREDIT TO.

Mixed-race victims of medical disease or social dysfunction who have any percentage of Hawaiian ancestry have their data counted as "Native Hawaiian" and not counted as any of the other races that make up part or even most of their ancestry. This greatly inflates the alleged victimhood of Native Hawaiians while at the same time depriving those other ethnicities of the victimhood recognition to which the facts entitle them. Anyone with even a single drop of Hawaiian native blood is classified as "Native Hawaiian" and solely as Native Hawaiian (for evidence see the "smoking gun" confession of statistical malpractice copied from a scholarly article cited below). The opposite sort of one-drop rule is used when counting Caucasians. A person whose ancestry is 7/8 Caucasian might be classified as Filipino merely because the father has 1/8 Filipino ancestry and the researcher feels a need to highlight minority victimhood. These two applications of the one-drop rule grossly increase the apparent level of Native Hawaiian victimhood while also reducing the apparent level of Caucasian victimhood.

"Studies" done by scholars or grant-seeking race-focused institutions use a "one drop" rule to maximize the number of Native Hawaiian victims and to minimize the number of Caucasian victims. This was openly confessed in the "Data and Methods" section of a journal article, and by a Hawaii university professor who commented on it. When compiling victimhood statistics a child is counted as solely Native Hawaiian if either parent has at least one drop of Hawaiian native blood; while a mixed-race child with one parent who has at least one drop of Caucasian blood has that part-Caucasian parent's ancestries excluded from the child's ancestry.

A scholarly article in January 2017 is a "smoking gun" that reveals intentional statistical malpractice in analyzing Native Hawaiian and Caucasian victimhood data. The article is: Yanyan Wu PhD; Kathryn Braun DrPH; Alvin T. Onaka PhD; Brian Y. Horiuchi MPH; Caryn J. Tottori MA; Lynne Wilkens DrPH, "Life Expectancies in Hawai'i: A Multi-ethnic Analysis of 2010 Life Tables" Hawai'i Journal of Medicine & Public Health, Vol 76, No 1, January 2017, pp. 9-14. It is available online at
http://www.hjmph.org/HJMPH_Jan17.pdf

The article reports on a study which examined "longevity disparities in Hawai'i by race/ethnicity and gender based on age-specific death rates in 2010. ... Native Hawaiians continue to have the shortest life expectancy of the ethnic groups examined, requiring expanded efforts to address Native Hawaiian health across the life course. ... [These results are] based on paternal ethnicity for mixed offspring, with exceptions for Caucasians and Native Hawaiians. When only one parent is Caucasian, the child takes the ethnicity of the non-Caucasian parent, and when one parent is Hawaiian or part-Hawaiian, the child is classified part-Hawaiian regardless of the other parentís ethnicity. For this study, we combined pure Hawaiians and part Hawaiians (under the term 'Native Hawaiian', indicating that the individual can trace his/her ancestry to pre-colonization), as the number of full-blood Hawaiians is small."

As shown above, the "Data and Methods" section of the article discloses how victimhood is attributed to race or ethnicity in a way that denies biological fact in order to supply ammunition to support the researchers' wish to magnify and proclaim Native Hawaiian victimhood while minimizing and downplaying Caucasian victimhood. Anyone with even a single drop of Hawaiian native blood is classified as "Native Hawaiian" and solely as Native Hawaiian. The opposite sort of one-drop rule is used when counting Caucasians. A person who is 99% Caucasian might be classified as Filipino merely because the father self-identifies as Filipino, regardless of his other heritages which could be predominant; and because the Caucasian mother's heritage is completely ignored. These two applications of the one-drop rule grossly increase the apparent level of Native Hawaiian victimhood while also reducing the apparent level of Caucasian victimhood. An accurate assessment could be provided if researchers had the courage to ask the politically incorrect but scientifically essential question: What are you? What racial groups are present in your ancestry, and what is the percentage of each one? The percentage of a victim's ancestry or lifestyle that is attributable to any particular ethnic group would then be the percentage of a tally mark awarded to that ethnic group's victimhood claim of medical or social dysfunction. Assigning a full tally mark to an ethnicity when that ancestry is only a small fraction of a victim's racial ancestry or lifestyle, carries the obviously false assumption that even a small bit of Hawaiian-ness is so powerfully poisonous that it causes the full level of the disaster experienced by the victim.

The article was called to my attention by a whistleblower -- a professor with a Ph.D. and expertise in statistical analysis who is on the graduate school faculty of one of Hawaii's major universities. In a followup email the professor described an astonishing statistical experiment confirming the malpractice. Professor said

"The default ethnicity category the DOH [Hawaii Department of Health] uses (for pretty much all statistics where they use 'ethnicity') is:
If any Native Hawaiian=then Native Hawaiian.
Once we were looking at data on child deaths and there was a majority of Native Hawaiian child deaths. So, I asked the (Chinese) statistician (on a lark) to try this formula:
If any Filipino=then Filipino....
all of sudden the statistics changed and the majority of child deaths were among Filipinos! Another time, I had a student who was looking at obesity ... she allowed up to five 'ethnicity' categories.... for a school in Waianae and one in town. Lo and behold, almost all of the children had five or more 'ethnicities'.
At some point it is (or will become) ridiculous to use ethnicity in Hawaii.... but it is still useful for NH [Native Hawaiian] victimhood.
Also, the only health disparities that both UH and DOH seem to look at are ethnic disparities, and especially NH disparities, when in fact most of the health disparities are related to class (income/poverty, education and smoking).

So, what's the harm? What are the practical consequences of statistical malpractice? One way to approach that question is to ask: What good does it do to collect data about race and gender? What social, economic, and political uses do we make of Census statistics? If statistics are unintentionally skewed because of respondent aspirational self-identification, or if media or researchers naively or deliberately twist the statistics by the way they (mis)allocate data to races, then those good purposes go unachieved. Individuals and politicians then make bad decisions based on bad information supplied to them by people seeking enrichment at everyone else's expense.

A valuable webpage provides information about 856 government funded racial entitlement programs for the exclusive benefit of "Native Hawaiians." Several other webpages on the same topic are also available. These programs, valued into the Billions of dollars, are paid for by tax dollars from the governments of the United States and the State of Hawaii. See "For Hawaiians Only. Webpages identifying and describing government funded racial entitlement programs providing benefits exclusively to Native Hawaiians using taxpayer dollars from the U.S. and State of Hawaii." at
http://www.angelfire.com/big11a/ForHawaiiansOnly.html

These programs were created in the first place partly because tycoons of the Hawaiian grievance industry were successful in using skewed Census data to manipulate public opinion and political decisions to provide special help to allegedly poor downtrodden Native Hawaiians. These racial entitlement programs drive a wedge between Native Hawaiians and everyone else. It is likely that these programs are unconstitutional. Some have been challenged in state and federal courts. Thus far the lawsuits to dismantle them have been dismissed on technical procedural issues including "standing" and the "political question" doctrine. Fear that courts will abolish these programs as unconstitutional has fueled demands for 20 years to create a Native Hawaiian tribe and get federal recognition for it, because tribes are legally allowed to engage in racial discrimination. If all else fails, then the tycoons might join demands from secessionists to rip the 50th star off the flag and establish Hawaii as an independent nation. See book "Hawaiian Apartheid: Racial Separatism and Ethnic Nationalism in the Aloha State" at
http://tinyurl.com/2a9fqa

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WHY BLOOD QUANTUM PERCENTAGES FOR EACH RACIAL COMPONENT ARE IMPORTANT DATA WHICH THE CENSUS BUREAU SHOULD COLLECT FOR MIXED-RACE RESPONDENTS, ESPECIALLY NATIVE HAWAIIANS

We often hear that Native Hawaiians have the worst statistics among Hawaii's ethnic groups for income, education, incarceration, breast cancer, diabetes, etc. However, little work has been done to look for the causes and cures of alleged deficits. Data collection and analysis should include all the races in each respondent's biological ancestry, along with respondent's estimate of the percentage of each. The age of each respondent should also be reported, so that comparisons between races can be made within age cohorts rather than merely totaled across all age groups.

For example, the fact that (Census 2010) Native Hawaiians have a median age of 26, compared with a median age of 42 for all the people of Hawaii excluding Native Hawaiians, probably shows that discrepancies in income, education, and incarceration are normal and to be expected -- the discrepancies are caused by youthful low income and low self-control rather than by race. Yet propagandists like to compare the entire racial group "Native Hawaiian" against other entire racial groups or against the total population without mentioning the huge age gap.

Most medical data in Census reports are lacking the very important element of racial blood quantum. If a woman has a low percentage of Hawaiian native ancestry, it seems unreasonable to allocate one entire tally mark to "Native Hawaiian" for her case of breast cancer. A better way to award the tally mark to a racial group would be to give it to the racial group representing her largest percentage of biological blood quantum rather than to her aspirational identity. The best way to ascribe the woman's breast cancer to race is to award fractional tally marks according to the percentages of each race in her ancestry. But the Census questionnaires never ask for racial blood-quantum percentages; thus multiracial respondents are encouraged to believe they may choose only a single race. Even scientifically trained researchers often ascribe data for a multiracial individual to only the race of greatest interest to the researcher.

To be rational in claiming that merely being Native Hawaiian is a cause of disease, blood quantum percentages are needed to prove a correlation between percentage of native blood and percentage of disease incidence. If women with a high percentage of Native Hawaiian ancestry have a high percentage of breast cancer while women with lower percentages of native ancestry have lower percentages of breast cancer, then it would be reasonable to conclude that there is at least a correlation between being Native Hawaiian and getting breast cancer; and it would be reasonable to spend money to look for specific genetic causes in hopes that race-specific gene therapy might produce a cure. But if the Census race question does not make a point of asking respondents to mark all the boxes for all their ancestries, and if multiracial respondents are not asked to estimate the percentage of each ancestry, then assertions of correlation between race and victimhood are mostly speculative.

Racial/cultural lifestyle percentages are also important to discover whether race is correlated with lifestyle and whether lifestyle alone, or lifestyle in combination with race, are correlated with medical or social dysfunction. If the claim is that problems are caused by Hawaiian lifestyle, then the components of Hawaiian lifestyle must be identified and quantified, and studies should be done to discover whether people pursuing a certain lifestyle, with or without the biological race imputed to that lifestyle, have a specific disease or social dysfunction at a higher rate than people of non-native ancestry and/or non-native lifestyle. Is there a correlation between frequent hula dancing and breast cancer? Is weekly labor in the mud of a taro patch correlated with diabetes, and/or incarceration for violent crime?

Unless there is evidence that Hawaiian ancestry or lifestyle is the cause of medical or social deficits, there is no justification for grants and programs restricted to Native Hawaiians. Study grants, and programs for identification and treatment of medical or social dysfunctions, should be focused on particular diseases and particular social problems rather than being focused on a racial group; unless it can be shown through blood quantum studies or cellular biology that the dysfunctions have a genetic cause.

Money and expertise for doing research are limited, and need to be allocated to areas most likely to produce useful results. Here's a reductio ad absurdum illustrating that point. Being left-handed is a far greater risk for breast cancer than being Native Hawaiian. On September 25, 2005 Reuters news agency reported "Left-handed women are more than twice as likely as right-handers to suffer from breast cancer before reaching menopause, Dutch scientists said." Also, the journal Epidemiology, March 2000 reported "Left-handedness, a marker of intrauterine steroid hormone exposure, modestly increases the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women."

What should we do with the fact that being left-handed doubles a woman's risk of getting breast cancer? Being left-handed is a far greater risk for getting breast cancer than being Native Hawaiian. Therefore, according to the sort of reasoning used by pushers of racially exclusionary programs for Native Hawaiians, government and philanthropic grants for study and treatment of breast cancer should be directed toward the race-neutral category of left-handed women through their (imagined) organization 'Ahahui Wahine Hana Lima Hema rather than toward Native Hawaiians through the very real organization Papa Ola Lokahi. Left-handedness as a more significant risk factor for breast cancer than Native-Hawaiian-ness is mentioned here as only one small example illustrating the importance of collecting data on racial blood-quantum percentages, and placing Native Hawaiian victimhood statistics into a larger context. There are probably thousands of similar examples.

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"NATIVE HAWAIIAN" HAS PERHAPS THE MOST OUTRAGEOUSLY SKEWED STATISTICS AMONG ALL RACES BECAUSE NEARLY ALL NATIVE HAWAIIANS ARE RACIALLY MIXED, AND BECAUSE OF RESPONDENT ASPIRATION TO IDENTIFY ONLY THEIR FAVORED RACE, AND BECAUSE OF POLITICALLY OR ECONOMICALLY MOTIVATED STATISTICAL SKEWING OF RACE BY RESEARCHERS EMPLOYED BY RACE-FOCUSED INSTITUTIONS, MEDIA, OR GRANT-SEEKING USERS OF CENSUS DATA.

In the absence of clearly distinguishing between ancestral fact vs. social/emotional aspiration or self-identified affiliation, Census data can be badly twisted for political purposes. One satirical hypothetical example comes next, mirroring the actual situation with Native Hawaiians. The satire is followed by several very real examples.

Suppose that Caucasians fall on hard times until they become a poor downtrodden minority of the U.S. population. Suppose a sympathetic Congress generously passes laws giving Caucasians the right to lease a homestead on the Caucasian homelands if they have at least 50% Caucasian ancestry. Homesteader descendants with 25% Caucasian ancestry can inherit the homesteads. Anyone with any percentage of Caucasian ancestry can receive benefits from hundreds of racial entitlement programs exclusively for Caucasians. Under these rules Barack Obama (50% Caucasian) would be eligible for a Caucasian homestead, and his daughters Malia and Sasha would be eligible to inherit the homestead. Furthermore, even Michelle Obama would be eligible for all those hundreds of non-homestead Caucasian racial entitlement programs because she is 1/32 Caucasian. One of Michelle's great-great-great-grandfathers was a Caucasian slave owner (He was a great-great grandfather of Michelle's mother). The New York Times on October 8, 2009 published details of careful research into Michelle Obama's genealogy
http://tinyurl.com/ylqm9ub
including an interactive family tree with mouse-over information about each known member through six generations:
http://tinyurl.com/yac3boj

A newspaper article describes a 450-page book which celebrates Native Hawaiian victimhood by compiling numerous studies over the years, many of which cited Census data. The book was published in 2005 just in time to influence an expected vote in the U.S. Senate to give federal recognition to Native Hawaiians as an Indian tribe. Gordon Y.K. Pang, "Data show Native Hawaiians lag" Honolulu Advertiser, Tuesday, September 13, 2005.

Pang said the book "gives Kamehameha and other agencies that serve Native Hawaiians a new weapon as they seek to stave off lawsuits that challenge their Hawaiians-first preference policies. The study derives nearly all of its data from other sources. But while much of the information is not new, it binds it into one source book that gives weight to the argument that Native Hawaiians, as a category, have greater needs than other ethnic groups in the state. ... 'It's basically the same story that we've been telling for the last 20 years,' said Shawn Malia Kana'iaupuni, director of Kamehameha's Policy Analysis and System Evaluation team. 'When you look at the data, you can see that whether you're looking at economic needs, physical health, material resources or other types of social indicators, the averages for Native Hawaiians are lower than other groups ' ... Native Hawaiian families make a mean income of $55,865, substantially less than the $66,413 statewide average for two-parent families with school-aged children. A separate table in the 2000 Census shows Hawaiians are under-represented in managerial and professional occupations. Only 22.8 percent of Native Hawaiians reported being in management and professional ranks, second only to the 18.3 percent of Filipinos who put themselves in that category. The statewide average was 32.2 percent. ... The rate of child abuse and neglect cases among Native Hawaiians was more than twice the rates of other major ethnic groups and has been steadily increasing. Native Hawaiians, on the whole, have disproportionately higher rates of substance abuse, arrest and incarceration than other groups."

Notice how the statistics reported in the newspaper article compare the entire group of ethnic Hawaiians against the rest of Hawaii's population, without mentioning the fact that the median age of ethnic Hawaiians is 26 while the median age of everyone else is 42; and without mentioning that most "Native Hawaiians" have most of their ancestry being NOT Native Hawaiian (and thus other ethnicities are entitled to a majority of the victimhood which the news report awards to Native Hawaiians). Of course people who are barely into adulthood have lower income, lower rank in their professions, and higher rates of child abuse, drug abuse, arrest and incarceration. Indeed, the greatly older average age of people with no Hawaiian blood indicates that a far larger number of them do not have any children in their homes that they could abuse, thus explaining why child abuse is lower for the non-ethnic-Hawaiian groups than for "Native Hawaiians." If newspaper reporter Gordon Pang did not understand how the statistics were gathered then he should not be reporting them; but if he did understand, then he is knowingly perpetrating the statistical malpractice and propaganda scam so beloved by the Hawaiian grievance industry.

In September 2010 the State of Hawaii Office of Hawaiian Affairs issued a report entitled "The Disparate Treatment of Native Hawaiians in the Criminal Justice System." The full report had about 100 pages, with many pages devoted to artistic glossy photos of taro plants and taro patches. In late December 2012 OHA issued a followup 32-page item: "The Native Hawaiian Justice Task Force Report." There's no date on the document (and it has only a few photos of an individual taro stalk!). On December 28 the Honolulu Star-Advertiser published a sycophantic news report about it, probably derived almost entirely from OHA's press release. The online article included a flash-player video news report from Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL. Other Hawaii media also pushed OHA's propaganda.

What the OHA report said, and how the underlying study was conducted: Data collected and analyzed in secret was then destroyed "to protect the privacy of the inmates", making peer review impossible. OHA and the group who produced this "study" should be embarrassed if their methods are compared with legitimate work done by scientists developing new drugs or reporting experiments in physics, biology, etc. Slick, artistically composed pages show that the purpose of the report is political propaganda rather than scientific scrutiny. Emotional appeals are made to a creation legend from the ancient Hawaiian religion, and the report is filled with emotionally rousing artistic photos of taro patches (because taro plays a key role in that creation legend). Unverifiable claims are made that ethnic Hawaiians suffer more trauma than other races when sent to prisons outside Hawaii, because their spiritual link to the land is broken.

The scurrilous, socially poisonous allegation of racially disparate treatment by the criminal justice system is false. The evidence offered to support it is statistically absurd, for two main reasons. The fact that the average age of Native Hawaiians is only 26 while the average age of everyone else in Hawaii is 42 shows that the alleged disparities in arrests and incarceration are because they are youthful, not because ethnic Hawaiians are either bad people or are being discriminated against. And the fact that most so-called "Native Hawaiians" have most of their ancestry from Asian and European groups shows that most of the arrests and incarceration allegedly attributable to being "Native Hawaiian" should actually be attributed to other ethnicities.

Here's a "crime and punishment" metaphor to sum it up. A crime has been committed, and Conklin's analysis proves the means, motive, and opportunity. The crime is an assault upon the people of the State of Hawaii and the sovereignty of our government. The means is a report by OHA alleging disparate treatment of ethnic Hawaiians by the judiciary and the criminal justice system. The motive is to weaken the confidence of Hawaii's people in our expectation of equal justice under the law, and thereby to promote establishment of a new race-based government exclusively for ethnic Hawaiians; and eventually to rip the 50th star off the flag. The opportunity was a major grant of tax dollars from the state Legislature to OHA to provide funding for the study. Why would the state government provide funding for a project to undermine its own authority? Why should the legislature appropriate tax dollars for OHA even though OHA already has hundreds of millions of dollars hoarded over the years and invested out of state, plus an assured flow of more millions every year? In this case, the state gave the money with benevolent intentions to make sure it provides equal justice under the law. There have been complaints alleging disparate treatment of ethnic Hawaiians, so the government wants to know whether the complaints are true and if so how to fix the problem. Ethnic Hawaiians are the state's favorite racial group, so we want to make sure they are treated well. But as usual, racial partisans have grabbed the money and used it for an evil purpose. No good deed goes unpunished.

For details and links to sources see webpage "Abusive disparate treatment of ethnic Hawaiians by the judiciary and the criminal justice system? Rebuttal to a report by the Hawaiian grievance industry released September 28, 2010" at
http://www.angelfire.com/big09a/DisparateTreatmentCriminal.html

Nearly everyone who self-identifies as "Native Hawaiian" is actually of mixed race, and perhaps 3/4 of them each has more than 3/4 of his/her ancestry that is not Native Hawaiian. We don't really know about percentages of native Hawaiian blood quantum because it is politically incorrect to ask people for their percentage, and also because the tycoons of Hawaiian racial entitlement programs know that such information would show their data in grant applications to be bogus. Many "Native Hawaiians" with low native blood quantum but high aspiration for a political agenda choose to respond to Census questionnaires by marking only the one box for Native Hawaiian when in fact they could (and should) check several race boxes. As a result Census 2010 "counted" more than 80,000 "pure" Native Hawaiians living in Hawaii, which everyone acknowledges is absurd.

Indians and Native Hawaiians often use the word "wannabe" in a disparaging way to refer to someone (usually a Caucasian) who apparently wants to belong to their group but lacks any genetic affiliation. Someone from the mainland who has no native ancestry might move to Hawaii, learn Hawaiian language, study the history and culture, and participate in Hawaiian cultural activities such as hula, chanting, taro harvesting, poi pounding, etc. Such activity will be welcome up to a point. But if he acts in a way that induces outsiders to believe he is truly Hawaiian, he will be rudely slapped down and derided as a "wannabe." He is expected to "know his place" and "sit in the back of the bus."

However, high-quantum Native Hawaiians rarely use the disparaging label "wannabe" against low-quantum Native Hawaiians who assert full Hawaiian-ness. The only difference in legal status between a Native Hawaiian with at least 50% native blood quantum vs. a Native Hawaiian with a lower blood quantum is the special entitlement to a lease at rent of one dollar per year for land in the homestead areas established by Congress in 1921. But even the high quantum Hawaiians generally say they recognize all people with even one drop of Hawaiian blood as fully Hawaiian.

Having one drop of Hawaiian native blood makes an infinite amount of difference to someone's social/psychological identity. Such a person is fully Hawaiian because of the creation legend Kumulipo, whereby all people with any degree of Hawaiian blood are descended from a single primordial ancestor who was a child of the same gods who also gave birth to the Hawaiian islands. Gods, land, and Native Hawaiians are all members of the same family with shared genealogy, while someone lacking native blood is forever outside that family. Thus a politically active ethnic Hawaiian with a low percentage of native ancestry might very well respond to Census questions by claiming to be entirely Native Hawaiian and suppressing all his other ancestral heritages. Many politically active Hawaiians asserting racial entitlements feel no shame or hesitancy about ignoring their other ancestries, despite the fact that they simultaneously tout the importance of ancestry and they claim to have enormous respect for elders and ancestors. Such racialist zealotry is deeply ingrained and hard to overcome. That's why the Census race question should be asked in a way to make clear that biological ancestry is being asked about and that all ancestries in respondent's biological makeup should be acknowledged in the questionnaire.

Kamehameha School has a racially exclusionary admissions policy. Although the founder Bernice Pauahi Bishop did not require that only Native Hawaiians could be students, the Board of Trustees has adopted that policy. In 2003 a case arose in the U.S. District Court in Honolulu about this policy. A boy, Brayden Mohica Cummings, had been granted admission as a 7th grade student. But when it was discovered that he had no native ancestry, the school rescinded his admission. Decades earlier the boy's mother, as a child, had been informally adopted (hanai) by a Native Hawaiian family, and she had been raised with Hawaiian cultural values. She considered herself to be Hawaiian. So she applied for her son to attend Kamehameha, and wrote on the application that he is Hawaiian. When the school rescinded the boy's admission, it was solely because he lacked Hawaiian native blood. Most leaders in the ethnic Hawaiian community said Brayden is not Hawaiian because he lacks the ancestry. Some cultural leaders, and federal judge Ezra (having no native blood), pointed to the cultural custom of hanai and said Brayden is Hawaiian. In the end the case was settled with the school admitting the boy to avoid any further litigation. The racialist activists insisted that being "Native Hawaiian" is a matter of biology, not culture. It would be interesting to see whether Brayden and his mother had checked the box for "Native Hawaiian" on their Census forms in 2000; and whether they later did so in 2010. We can take a look 72 years later when the forms are released to the public.

A scholarly researcher in New York, unaware of the political skewing of data, might create an analysis or "study" purporting to show that Native Hawaiians have the worst statistics for diabetes, heart disease, and breast cancer among all Hawaii's ethnic groups. An appropriate warning accompanying the data tables might have helped the scholar avoid that error. The situation is far worse regarding Census Bureau press releases given to news reporters who lack even basic knowledge of how to interpret statistics. Such news releases need far stronger warnings than the warnings provided for scholars in raw data tables.

Anecdotal evidence is clear that OHA, Kamehameha Schools, and other Hawaiian institutions often encourage their beneficiaries to report only their Native Hawaiian ancestry, in hopes of increasing government handouts and strengthening public perception of Hawaiians as "a people" who are unique, distinct, and separate (and thus eligible for federal recognition as an Indian tribe!). I, Ken Conklin, spent several years from 2000 to 2006 working one week every month for the Census Bureau "Current Population Survey" interviewing people in their homes 8 times during a 16 month period to gather data about jobs and unemployment. The first interview asked for the names, birthdates, and races of each household member. Occasionally I encountered people whose names were not Hawaiian and whose physical appearance was not Hawaiian, but who would identify themselves solely as Native Hawaiian. A Hawaiian woman might have a non-Hawaiian name because she was married, but a man has no such explanation.

A Census Bureau rule made it clear that interviewers were required to accept without question whatever race someone claimed to be. But occasionally I bent the rule by casually asking a "pure Hawaiian" a question like "I can mark more than one race -- any other races?" and sometimes I got a loud and defiant response "No! I'm pure Hawaiian" even when a man had a name like "Jones" or "Tamashiro" and looked Caucasian or Japanese.

Perhaps the most poignant example was when I interviewed a very sweet single mother of a toddler, who identified herself only as Okinawan [the Census calls her Japanese] and she identified her baby only as Hawaiian. When the official interview had ended, I made clear it was over and asked if she'd be willing to answer an off-the-record personal question to satisfy my curiosity. I gently, in a soft voice, asked "Did you give birth to that boy or is he adopted?" She said she had given birth to him. I asked why she identified the boy as Hawaiian, and she answered that the boy's [absentee] father is Hawaiian. I then asked her why she gave only "Hawaiian" as the boy's race when she, the boy's natural mother with full custody, is Okinawan. She said that she receives benefits for the boy from Kamehameha Schools and they had told her that she should always refer to her boy simply as Hawaiian. She added that the boy's father is only part-Hawaiian and mostly Filipino. That interview from years ago stands out in my mind today because it seemed so sad to me that a woman felt compelled to deny her own Okinawan ancestry as being part of the ancestry of a baby to whom she herself had given birth, and also to deny to the boy's Census record the predominantly Filipino ancestry of the boy's part-Hawaiian father. And it's not the only interview like that!

------------------

THE CENSUS BUREAU SHOULD INCLUDE A DISCLAIMER WITH EACH VERBAL SUMMARY OR DATA TABLE INVOLVING RACE OR GENDER, WARNING THAT RESULTS MAY BE SKEWED BECAUSE ASPIRATIONAL SELF-IDENTIFICATION MIGHT NOT ALIGN WITH BIOLOGICAL FACT.

Prescription drugs come with warnings about side effects. Consumer products come with safety warnings: Do not stand on the top rung of the ladder because it might tip over; If you drink alcoholic beverages you should not drive; Objects in rear-view mirror might be closer than they appear; Keep this torch-lamp away from curtains.

Census statistics about race and gender might seem relatively harmless because they do not directly lead to death, injury, or property damage. But Census statistics should be thought of as consumer products that can be just as deadly to social well-being or political stability as medications or electrical devices can be dangerous to health and safety. In recent years we have seen statistics used as weapons in political wars, especially in the case of Native Hawaiians seeking public sympathy for race-based nationhood and seeking money for race-based government handouts. Accurate statistics help decision-makers know where there are problems and how to direct resources. But twisted statistics are weapons, that can be slow-acting like an insidious poison or can be instantly fatal like a sniper's rifle shot.

Aspirational skewing causes inaccurate media reporting by statistically unsophisticated reporters relying on Census Bureau news releases having weak or non-existent plain-English disclaimers that data may be skewed by aspirational self-identification. Even mathematically sophisticated scholars might misinterpret aspirational identity as though it is biological fact unless they are reminded about the ambiguity. A disclaimer should accompany each table, graph, or verbal summary, because particular ones may be plucked out of context and out of the ocean of Census materials even many years after they were created and after today's social activism may have faded.

For example: It was described earlier that aggregated data for "Asian American and Pacific Islanders" or "Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders" were released fairly early after decennials 2000 and 2010, while disaggregated data for "Native Hawaiians" were not released until approximately two years later. The practical consequence was that newspapers in Hawaii began reporting erroneous "facts" about the number of "Native Hawaiians" in Hawaii (or nationwide), or their percentage of the population, or their household income, longevity, diabetes, heart disease, etc.; because the news reporters failed to recognize the difference between "Native Hawaiians" (not yet reported at that time) vs. "Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders" (newly reported with high publicity by the Census Bureau at that time).

A prominently-placed warning about this in Census Bureau news releases could have helped prevent erroneous reporting. Such a warning might say: "This category includes Samoans, Tongans, Marshall Islanders, Guamanians, Micronesians, and others [and soon Filipinos?] in addition to Native Hawaiians; therefore it is inappropriate to draw conclusions about Native Hawaiians or any other subgroup based on the aggregated data presented here."

For example: Both Census 2000 and Census 2010 "count" the number of "pure" Native Hawaiians (race alone) living in Hawaii as more than 80,000. Yes, eighty thousand. We all know that's absurd!

How does something like that happen? Please reread the bottom six paragraphs of the comment section above this one.

Suggested warning for news releases: People responding to Census surveys report their race or ethnicity however they wish. Many multiracial respondents might report only a single race with which they feel most closely affiliated. They may report only a single race even though they were explicitly told they could choose as many as they wished. A multiracial respondent might choose to report only a single race which is only a small fraction of his ancestry, even if a different race is a much larger fraction of it.

------------------------

WHERE TO SEE THE 6-PAGE NOTICE BY OMB IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER, AND ALL THE COMMENTS ON IT

Ken Conklin's comments were written in early April 2017 in response to a detailed (6 pages) request for comments published in the Federal Register on March 1, 2017 with deadline April 30, 2017.

https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=OMB-2017-0003-0001

Federal Register, March 1, 2017
Federal Register Number: 2017-03973
ID: OMB-2017-0003-0001

Revision of Standards for Maintaining, Collecting, and Presenting Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity: Proposals From Federal Interagency Working Group

All comments are displayed for public viewing at

https://www.regulations.gov/docketBrowser?rpp=25&so=DESC&sb=commentDueDate&po=0&dct=PS&D=OMB-2017-0003

Ken Conklin's individual comment is posted in the Federal Register at
https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=OMB-2017-0003-0052


================

Send comments or questions to:
Ken_Conklin@yahoo.com

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