As the Hawaiian language revived over the past few decades, two diacritical marks have helped clarify pronunciation: the `okina and the kahako. In English, those are called the glottal stop and the macron.
The `okina actually is a consonant that takes the place of a “k” or a “t” used in other Polynesian languages. It sounds something like the break between the two “ohs” in “oh-oh.” It may begin a word or be inserted between vowels.
The kahako is a short horizontal line above a vowel to indicate that it is stressed or longer than other vowels. In fact, there is supposed to be a kahako over that word’s final “o,” to show that the last syllable is emphasized. But it’s not there, and though I generally am careful to use both `okina and kahako, you won’t see kahako anywhere on this blog.
That’s because this blog format’s font (and much of the Internet) does not have the option to use kahako. I can fake the `okina with that little mark to the left of the numeral 1 on my keyboard, but not the kahako.
Usually I go by the philosophy that one should use both or use neither. A friend persuaded me, however, that because the `okina is a consonent, while the kahako is simply an indication of pronunciation, I should use the `okina. So I am. It bugs me, but this font replaces kahako with the German umlaut, those two little dots over a vowel, and that bugs me even more.