The leader of a country must have the respect and love for their country that their country has for them. In the end, it’s the people’s decision on who is their leader no mater what type of government they have. For it is in the people that the power of their country  truly lies. The “American” ideas of liberty and equality shape a society where all citizens are equal and have the same natural rights and freedoms. Queen Liliuokalani’s views towards liberty and equality prove more “American” than those of Sanford Dole because of her passionate attitude towards acting for the natives of her country’s best interests.

            Queen Liliuokalani loved her country and all of the people in it. She always carried their best interests at heart, and put them before herself. When her brother, King Kalākaua left the country from time to time, she was left in charge, and accomplished tasks she thought were best for her people. One of the major things she did was, because of a growing epidemic of smallpox, arranged for all of Hawaii’s ports to be closed off to stop the disease that was being brought over by Asain laborers (  Instead of looking for personal economic growth and taking advantage of the healthy business that was fueled by Hawaii’s major sugar and pineapple industries by letting people travel to her country to buy the wanted goods, she did what was best for the people and tried her best to keep them healthy and happy. The fact that Queen Liliuokalani was so devoted to her country is important to consider when thinking about her views on liberty and equality as a whole. Without that commitment to her people, there is no way that she can begin to have any “American” ideas.

            One of the biggest events that separated Queen Liliuokalani from Sanford Dole was how they were involved in the Bayonet Constitution. This was a constitution implicated in 1887 when Sanford Dole called a meeting to force King Kalākaua to write a new constitution. The Bayonet Constitution was the result of this meeting and took away 75% of the native Hawaiian population’s right to vote in elections, while Americans and other Europeans in Hawaii were given full voting rights without having to be Hawaiian citizens ( In addition, the Bayonet Constitution also limited the monarch’s power, and empowered the legislature and cabinet of the government. When King Kalākaua died in 1891, Liliuokalani became queen and was determined to restore the monarch’s lost authority, which would in turn restore all of the rights of the legal Hawaiian citizens and strip the non-citizens of their voting eligibility (Clark, Judith, 170). This concerned American’s who were worried about their agriculture and trade to the mainland. When she tried to propose this new constitution, she was forcibly removed from power and the authority was transfered from the monarchy to the provisional government lead by Lorrin Thurston, Sanford Dole and the Committee of Safety. With the Bayonet Constitution in place, Hawaiian natives had basically no voice in their country and were taken over by Americans interested in Hawaii’s popular sugar and pineapple industries (Forbes, David, 232-233). Queen Liliuokalani’s actions and beliefs on this matter compared to Dole’s clearly show how she was more concerned with her county’s well being rather than her own power acquisition. By supporting the Bayonet Constitution, Dole proved to not hold the “American” ideas of liberty and equality. In fact he did just the opposite. He gave more freedom to the Americans who were not even citizens living in Hawaii, and took away the voices of the natives. With the provisional government held the power, Hawaii was not an equal government.

            In 1893 president Grover Cleveland himself declared that, after listening to both the provisional government and the old monarchy, the Hawaiians sided with the queen. He offered Liliuokalani her crown back for this reason, but it was not long before she was once more dethroned, and later in 1895 arrested for misprision of treason when a cache of weapons was found in the gardens of her former palace ( This shows that still, in 1893, the citizens of Hawaii liked Queen Liliuokalani because she did what was best for them and had more equal and liberal plans for her country than the provisional government which included Sanford Dole.

            Even at old age, close to death, Queen Liliuokalani entrusted her estate to provide for orphaned and destitute children in the Hawaiian Islands ( A few years after that on November 11, 1917 at the age of 79, she died as the last Queen of Hawaii. The love between Queen Liliuokalani and the people of her country was mutual, and Hawaii was a more equal and liberal country with a monarchy rather than with the government that replaced it. This is a concept many countries would benefit from. For a country to be equal and free, the leader has to respect the opinions and thoughts of their people. Ultimately, the leader is there to do what is best for the people, and if they don’t, they are not doing their job. This is a problem that has happened in many other countries besides Hawaii, and one can only hope that their histories will end with a leader who is capable of sustaining liberty and equality in their country. Hawaii is a clear example of the difference between a good leader and a bad leader, and every country should try to recognize these characteristics among their own governments. Hopefully, they will find they have a “Queen Liliuokalani,” and not a “Sanford Dole.”

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