Latest Newsletter🍵 Chinese History Month in WARead


Protesters Swarm Aloha Poke Co.’s Corporate HQ in Chicago After Bullying Native Hawaiians

    Asian America Daily - in under 5 minutes

    Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories, to your inbox daily, for free!

    Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive

    A group of protesters consisting of 200 Native Hawaiians and others trooped to Aloha Poke Co.’s corporate headquarters to voice their dissent against the company.

    The Chicago-based business, which trademarked the words “Aloha” and “Poke” sparked massive outrage after it was exposed that it sent threatening letters to companies bearing similar names to stop using the words which are native to the Hawaiian people.

    Native Hawaiians have since condemned the actions on social media, saying they won’t let themselves be bullied out of their own culture by a corporation.

    Arts and culture organization Aloha Center Chicago, the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement, ʻIlioʻulaokalani Coalition, and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs organized the protest on Monday. 

    During the event, Native Hawaiians blew conch shells and chanted “Ku’e Aloha Poke” (which means to “resist Aloha Poke”) in front of a building on Clark Street where the business operates in Chicago. Some demonstrators also carried signs that read: “Aloha is Not For Sale.”

    Protestors are seeking to get the company to retract its cease and desist letters to other businesses, which include establishments owned by actual Hawaiians.

    They are also hoping the company offers a “true apology to the Native Hawaiian people.”

    In response to the protest, Aloha Poke Co. CEO Chris Birkinshaw told the Honolulu Star Adviser, “We fully support the expression of free speech and their right to protest in a peaceful manner.”

    Support our Journalism with a Contribution

    Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.

    Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.

    However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.

    We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way.  Thank you for everyone's support. We love you all and can't appreciate you guys enough.

    Support NextShark

    Mastercard, Visa, Amex, Discover, Paypal