2 Letters

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NZHerald 23/3/19 (A quick word section)
Linking the mosque shooter to a “dark underbelly of racism and white superiority in New Zealand” is a long bow to draw. It smells as if someone is politicising this tragedy.
W. CLARK, RD Pukekohe


Anne Salmond: critic and conscience of our society.
CATHIE HUTCHINSON, Mt Albert.


Tame Iti is now activist in residence at Massey University. Given his past history of firing firearms in public, is this appropriate?
NEVILLE CAMERON, Coromandel.


I was a white supremacist of the kind Dame Susan Devoy and Dame Anne Salmond despise but since all those Asian kids started winning most of academia’s prizes I’ve had to eat humble pie. Does that bring me into the fold or am I still beyond the pale?
KERRY CRAIG, Mt Eden.

The Press 23/3/19
WISDOM
I agree with Professor Jonathan Scott's opinion. I think Gary Glover and Dame Anne Salmond need to pull their respective heads in.

They need to get some of Jacinda Ardern's wisdom. This is not the time or the place for reactionary historical revisionism.

Let's not forget anger was what fuelled this horror. I do hope and pray that political correctness and emotive reactions to this horror won't cloud sound Judgment, nor the love and compassion we all need at this time.
JOHN BEACH, Sydenham


DANGEROUS
Gary Glover (Mar 22) comes close to using a tragedy of unique proportions to promote his own agendas. There is reference to our city as being "long known for it's neo-Nazi-style white supremacist and White nationalist movements".

Yet it was my experience, based on working for Corrections for 40 years, that the members of white power gangs were an obnoxious minority who were not a serious threat to the public. In fact, Christchurch Prison has not seen such offenders "for years", so I am told.

It is not only wrong to describe Christchurch in this way but dangerous.

No doubt there is a minority who hold White supremacist views: they use the Internet to promote their baleful opinions. But such individuals are not confined to Christchurch and the evidence so far indicates the alleged offender was acting on his own.
BRUCE ANDERSON, St Albans

NZ Herald 22/3/19
NOT US
It is extremely disappointing to read that Maori leaders are calling for the nation to reject the call “This is not us”. Bringing up scars of the past do not heal wounds that are currently open . . . This is not us and every opportunity should be taken to emphasise it. Rather than condemn our mistakes treat them as gifts to use for future improvement.
REG DEMPSTER, Albany.


TREAD CAREFULLY
The mayor, Phil Goff, says Auckland’s goal is to “treat as equals . . . all people regardless of race, colour and creed”.

While he omitted “gender” from this list (hopefully accidentally), I applaud this stance as the basic principle of democracy but ask if this is a change in policy for the council? You only have to look at most council documents and processes to see that the self-appointed elite of local tribes currently have significantly greater rights than all other Aucklanders.

Goff then calls for people “to speak out against New Zealanders who peddle bigotry, prejudice and racism”. While I abhor violence and abuse, I fear any leader who wants to shut down free speech or endorse suppression. Women would not have the freedoms they have in Western countries today if they hadn’t been able to protest and speak out.

When there is no abuse or violence involved, who is an extremist, a racist or a sexist? New Zealand needs to tread carefully. The despots of the world use such justifications when eliminating their political foes.
FIONA MACKENZIE, Stanmore Bay.


FREE SPEECH
Did anyone else notice the hypocrisy in the mayor of Auckland’s opinion piece in yesterday’s Herald? On the one hand he talks about being inclusive and treating all people as equals and then in the next paragraph he is advocating zero tolerance for people who think differently from him.

If he doesn’t like people’s opinions which differ from his own, his time would be better spent working out arguments that oppose their “propaganda” rather than trying to suppress their opinions by pouring invective and hatred on them.
BRUCE ROBERTSON, Westmere.

Gisborne Herald 21/3/19
OPPORTUNISM RESENTED
Dear editor, I know you rate Dame Anne Salmond highly, which is fair enough since she is a very accomplished person. But that doesn’t mean she is free from prejudice. I find I am resentful of the way she seizes on the tragedy in Christchurch, perpetrated by a stupid Australian, to reiterate her view that New Zealand is a bad and racist place.

I have been around, plus I’ve been around for quite a while. I can tell you there is no more reasonable and decent and generous place than New Zealand. And there are no more reasonable and peaceful and decent and generous people than New Zealanders. Maori, Pakeha, who cares. Actually, I can even tell you that the people of Gisborne epitomise most of what is tolerant and good in this world, which is why I live here.

I don’t appreciate being labelled a racist or a bad person just because I am a proud Kiwi. I don’t appreciate people who grab every opportunity to knock our fine country.
CRAIG BAULD

Dominion Post 21/3/19
WE CAN’T LET OURSELVES BE DIVIDED
In all the horror of the terrorist attacks, one hopeful image is the mass of people who came out to support the victims. They were, for the most part, not Muslims. Some were Christians, but most had no particular religion. Men and women, young and old, ordinary New Zealanders of all races and colours came together. If any good is to come out of this terrible situation it will be through that kind of unity. We can’t let ourselves be divided.

Unfortunately, that is what seems to be happening.

There has been much talk about white supremists. Yes, these people exist, they are all over New Zealand, but they are a tiny, tiny minority. Let’s keep some perspective.

Just because someone is to the right of Nicky Hager doesn’t make them a fascist. Just because they want to keep the ‘‘Victoria’’ in Victoria University doesn’t make them a redneck. Just because they support the Canterbury Crusaders doesn’t make them an Islamophobe.

Whenever a Muslim commits an act of terrorism, we must avoid tarring all Muslims with the same brush. Let’s extend the same courtesy to white men. Otherwise this hysteria about ‘‘white supremists’’ could become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
JONATHAN DEPREE, Palmerston North

The Press 21/3/19
FIRST MUSLIMS
This year marks the 250th anniversary of the first European landing on Aotearoan shores. Unbeknown to most, it also marks the advent of the very first Muslim presence in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Contrary to popular belief, Muslims (and other tauiwi) did not first arrive in New Zealand in the early 1820s, or with the advent of the Otago goldrush.

The first Muslim presence in New Zealand occurred in December 1769 when 53 Indian lascars (sailors) set sail from Pondicherry, India along with 179 Frenchmen aboard the Saint Jean-Baptiste under the command of Jean-Franc¸ oisMarie de Surville.

While the majority of the crew died of scurvy along the way, 5-6 Indian lascars survived to make landing in Doubtless Bay between 18-31 December.

Two of the surviving crew to come ashore are named in Surville’s log as ‘‘Mahmud Qasim’’ of Pondicherry, and ‘‘Nasreen,’’ a young Bengali.

Non-Maori non-Pakeha ‘others’ were here at the dawn of Maori-European encounter and involved in nation-building from the point of first contact.

Yet they remain invisible in the teaching of New Zealand history. Today’s minority communities are a part of our shared national identity and have just as much a right to live, work, and stay safe in Aotearoa as do Maori and Europeans.
TODD NACHOWITZ, PhD, Waikato Interfaith Council

Northland Age 21/3/19
FAILURE AFTER FAILURE
The Labour Coalition Government is living in denial with Housing Minister Twyford’s Kiwibuild fiasco, only around 33/47 homes built, 77 in the pipeline yet promised 1000 by July 2019. It is secondrate, poorly-sited, overpriced stuff, unwanted by Kiwis despite incentives offered. So the question arises, what housing crisis? No matter how desperate they are (?) no wonder no one wants them, the ceo has gone and the scheme looks like a haven for universal discontent. Few qualified workers available and in direct competition with private enterprise — outcome an unmitigated disaster. housing affordability basically caused by developers and government policies, not necessarily home shortages.

Infrastructure and redevelopment minister Jones’ Provincial Growth Fund, with dubious investments often against Treasury advice in forestry; dairy factories; churches, etc. and now $100 million to owners of Maori land mainly in Northland; that is race-based privilege (made on the eve of Waitangi too), being akin to pork barrel politics— Mr Jones strangely can't provide details of whether a loan, gift, grant or what? Let me help you out Mr Jones — it is koha and will never be repaid! As one experienced commentator said, Mr Jones would be unable to spend $1 billion per annum unless he squandered it — well he is trying hard to achieve that goal by throwing dosh around like a drunken sailor. Interestingly it looks like he has also become the manager of cultural conflicts.

Two coalition ministers have already gone down the road for behavioural lapses and probably couldn't perform tasks allotted anyway. At least four more need to go post-haste but then looks like you are only left with an oddball pack of nitwits and no good raw material to work with.

As for being the most open, transparent, honest and accountable Government that's codswallop to put it politely — as they say, a fish rots from the head down and so it is with politics.

No one could seriously point to any of the myriad of policies that's remotely viable. As for the review committees set up, what a farce these are. It is time for this bunch of stuffwits to go having regard to Kiwibuild absurd calculations on costs viability and unrealistic expectations of 1000 homes per annum that's three per day or 21 each week, plus Mr Iones' ludicrous profligate PGF splurging.
ROB PATERSON Mount Maunganui

NZ Herald 20/3/19
DIVISIVE COLUMN
I find the vitriol and bigotry shown by Dame Anne Salmond in her inflammatory commentary, “Racist underbelly seethes just below the surface”, grossly offensive. Stoking division by blaming one ethnicity for all the ills of society is an example of the hate speech we so properly condemn. Bringing people together is what we should be doing at this time, not engaging in divisive identity politics.
SUSAN SHORT, Meadowbank.


CULTURAL PRIDE
If your correspondent Dame Anne Salmond asked anybody in China if they had the best country, culture or ideals in the world, they would say yes. Such would be the response in any country pretty much anywhere in the world. It is not racist to think your culture, values or country are the best in the world. It is what you know and virtually every person in the world thinks the same way. It is the reason immigrants around the world bring their food, religion and their customs to the country they settle in.

Unfortunately the tragedy of Christchurch seems to have given a green light for open criticism and vitriol towards those of European descent. The crimes and attitudes of one person have been placed on an entire ethnic group. It is racist and it is utterly deplorable.

Although this is the tone we have set after this terrorist attack, I doubt the same will apply towards the representative group of the next terrorist attack.
KENT MILLAR, Blockhouse Bay.

Dominion Post 20/3/19
DAME ANNE SALMOND
It is extraordinary that an historian with a worldwide reputation has used the tragedy in Christchurch to give a highly biased and subjective view of our history.

Anne Salmond’s ‘White supremacy is a part of us’ is full of unsubstantiated generalisations unworthy of an acclaimed academic. For example, after a statement on the 1840 Waitangi Treaty she writes: ‘‘This promise (of equality) was utterly smashed by the incoming settler government, which proclaimed and practised white supremacy.’’

She provides no evidence to back this claim and knows that many governors and politicians, such as Grey and Gore Browne, worked hard to fulfil the promises of fairness and equality for Maori. There were some bigoted MPs at the time, as in all parliaments since, but these were a minority.

She makes no mention of the chaos in Maori society during the decades leading up to the Treaty. These were times of inter-tribal warfare, slavery, cannibalism, rape, abduction and the slaughter of thousands of innocent men, women and children.

To use Salmond’s phrase – there is plenty of evidence that Maori were lucky to be colonised as tino rangatiratanga had meant war, male supremacy and insecurity.
ROGER CHILDS, Paraparaumu
NZ Herald 19/3/19
DEBATE ALLOWED
In the wake of the appalling attacks in Christchurch, there has been much said about the influence hate had on the attack. In light of this, it is poignant that we remember that hate is not defined by skin colour but by ideologies that teach intolerance, hatred and divisiveness. Debating the merits of ideas and opinions is an essential element in pushing back on hateful ideologies.

Calling for the death of entire groups of people is straight out hatred and should be banned. Honest and factual criticism of any ideology however should not be confused as hate speech. All ideology demands that it be debated. The very word ideology implies an idea and all ideas should be open to debate.
KENT MILLAR, Blockhouse Bay.

Northland Age 19/3/19
CAPITAL GAINS TAX
Over recent weeks, we have seen the shambolic release of the Capital Gains Tax Working Group Report and the criticism has been vociferous. The opponents were forewarned are well informed, literate and taking no prisoners. Labour’s response and defence was pitiful and, as one commentator recently observed, they look like rabid socialists with idealist ideological Marxist mindsets and he isn’t far wrong with that assessment.

Let’s start with CGT chairman Cullen (British born), whose qualifications are in history not accounting, not real-world economics, not taxation yet he was sometime Finance Minister under the 2002/2008 Labour Government, responsible for the NZ Rail repurchase (fail), Foreign Investment regime and Transfer pricing (fail), NZ Superannuation Fund (Cullen Fund) a Government-funded high-risk taxpayer junket. Then, on his retirement, Cullen was appointed to the inane Constitution Advisory Panel (fail), Chairman of NZ Post (fail) and more recently chairman of CGT (dead on arrival) fiasco.

In the meantime he accepted a knighthood, a title which Labour had in 2000 removed from NZ honours list under his watch and that is spineless. He has now been retained post-CGT report as consultant to push the Labour cause, yet didn’t have the courage for electoral reasons to do so during his parliamentary tenure. This troughing is hardly the sign of impartiality dispassionateness or objectiveness — the transparency is zilch!! Additionally it shows the current Labour bunch don’t have the nous to address the issues. Anyway Mr Cullen’s fiscal track record is dubious at best.

Possibly a limited form of Capital Gains Tax may have merit, extend the Brightline test (but we really already have speculation tax for this), look at reintroducing land tax at say 2 per cent or 3 per cent, for farms, orchards, lifestyle blocks ( including Maori land), commercial buildings and rentals, fully tax profits on short-term share sales, ring-fence losses on rental properties, tax all Charitable Trusts (including Maori Trusts) and revisit stamp duty which may get most Kiwis onside. Plain English stuff, not mealy-mouthed claptrap and, if acceptable, implement any changes gradually. Making incomes under $20,000 tax free and ensuring top tax rate does not kick in until $70,000 are other measures that might help.

As an aside, I am sick of ex-politicians people like Cullen, Palmer, Bolger, Shipley and co making hay in public life at taxpayers’ expense after retiring from politics.
ROB PATERSON, Mt Maunganui


RACIST RULE
Recently, when acknowledging acceptance of a contract with Healthcare NZ, I was required to agree to a clause that I must to the Maori Health Strategy (2002) and apply the principles accordingly".

On researching the MHS, I found that it was an official agreement signed by lion. Annette King, Minister of Health and Hon. Tatiana 'curia, Associate Minister of Health in November 2002. I was disturbed by the fourth paragraph which stated the need for supporting the health status of whanau by "addressing systemic bafflers including institutional racism". Seventeen years on, this term appears regularly in the media from ethnic sources but without a shred of supportive evidence of the claim.

I then read an article in the Herald eulogising Naida Glavis claiming ethnic privileges. She acknowledges that in hospitals whanau are already given special grieving rooms and designated corridors for the passage of deceased.

The Kaipara Ward at Tauranga Hospital is available exclusively for Maori. Is this not institutional racism? If the ward was exclusively for Pakeha it would be. But that would be considered apart held.

When questioned about Maori crowding out the waiting rooms and stairwells outside operating theatres she replied "Maori aren't responsible for the

size of your waiting rooms and they are entering into a specialist area of karakia to give support to ensure the knife doesn't slip ... " A slur on the expertise of our surgeons. Try using a tohunga who wasn't even allowed to feed himself.

Ms Glavis, hospital space and facilities are at a premium. Those of the other 230 national ethnicities have equal concerns for the health and well-being of their relations awaiting medical procedures but are not so impractical, self-serving and insensitive as you to others' needs. None of them has been given special medical or health privileges.

Many of the health problems of Maori are the result of their chosen life styles and not the result of colonial oppression or institutional racism.

The cultural changes that you have claimed and that the Herald unreservedly published have been solely for the benefit of Maori and not all New Zealanders who pay for them. Your phrase "your waiting rooms" indicates an occlusive mindset. Is that because WE pay for them and YOU should have unlimited access to them?
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Hawkes Bay Today 16/3/19
HERE’S HOPING BOTH PARTIES LEARN FROM FIASCO AT MEETING
Not being at the meeting where Mr Heperi-Smith was shouted at from the floor for speaking te reo, I’m assuming the meeting was held in a public domain, not a marae.

Ignorance can be a two-way street. I’m assuming the audience would have been predominately European.

Feelings would have been running high given housing criminals in the community was being discussed.

Two Maori then start speaking te reo. It seems only after the fact was the audience told a translation would be provided and English would resume. To me, that’s bad manners.

I’m guessing the audience may have thought Mr Heperi-Smith was about to drone on for ages.

That’s a problem with some meetings and events with Maori speakers showing little regard for time constraints and whether an audience understands what they are saying.

Mr Heperi-Smith says Maori isn’t just for Maori — it’s for the whole nation.

Yet his korero was in support of a programme that is only for Maori women. That’s a glaring disconnect.

So maybe that was another factor for some in the audience to be angsty about.

Let’s hope both parties have learnt from this fiasco.
MATIUS RYAN, Wairoa

Bay of Plenty Times 16/3/19
RESPONSIBILITY
As a concerned resident, I attended city council’s (March 5) meeting, where an unheralded, interim committee decision had been taken to gift in principle, 11 Mission St to the Otamataha Maori Trust.

My clear understanding had been that the rates we pay are used for the betterment of the city, environs and residents, not to pay for alleged past grievances.

That is clearly the Government’s responsibility and the route the Maori Trust must take if their claim is to be addressed further.

Of the total committee, only mayor Brownless and councillors Robson, Stewart and Brown voted on behalf of the residents, the remainder, in my view, abrogated their responsibility to this city.
D J BENNETT Bethlehem

Bay of Plenty Times 15/3/19
ELMS AND CULTURAL HERITAGE
The Elms Foundation owns and operates The Elms Te Papa Tauranga as an essential part of New Zealand's national cultural heritage, being one of New Zealand's oldest heritage sites.

Home to significant collections and category one listed heritage buildings, this tranquil setting is visited by thousands of people each year and remains at the centre of Tauranga's identity.

It was originally purchased from local iwi by Rev Brown in the 1830s. In other words, it has a history which has reflected Maori and European lifestyles since the formation of the Church Mission Society.

The new pavilion will enable more iwi input to this historical site and is an entrance welcomed by the Elms Foundation who, however, now apparently remain in limbo on its future.

The latest purchase in 2012 was funded by the Tauranga Energy Consumer Trust's $790,000, the Tauranga City Council's $400,000 and The Elms' $100.000. It meant The Elms had secured nearly all its boundary from the threat of commercial developments.

Why would the council give away land it has purchased (with ratepayer money) for the future development of The Elms and then agree to pay a rental?

Not only is this letting down the foundation and the residents of Tauranga but is providing the possibility of yet another future commercial enterprise and certainly yet another controlling input under Treaty auspices.

The council should now complete its ownership transfer for the purpose it was intended.
R.E.STEPHENS Papamoa Beach

NZ Herald 14/3/19
‘IMPRESSIVE’ KNOWLEDGE
One has to be impressed that Maria Alyokhina, a member of the punk rock group Pussy Riot, has found time in the last two weeks, while maintaining a busy tour, to research historical Maori land claims, and in particular the current Maori claim to Ihumatao in South Auckland.

That she is able to categorically state “Ihumatao is Maori land” and that “the Government should pay for this land and give it back to Maori”, speaks for her astute acumen and makes her potentially an outstanding candidate for the Waitangi TribunaL.
DAVE MURRAY, Grey Lynn.


SCHOOLING MAORI
It seems to me Marianne and Terry Kayes misinterpreted Richard Prebble’s comments. My takeout from him was that according to international measurements, 80 per cent of pupils were achieving very well under the current system. So why would you want to change that?

It would make more sense to develop something else for the specific needs of the 20 per cent who are not achieving (no matter ethnicity). The Kayes do not seem to appreciate we are all unique and there is not one solution to fit all with education.
FIONA MACKENZIE, Stanmore Bay.

Bay of Plenty Times 13/3/19
SOVEREIGNTY
I have noticed a new word in recent writings about the Treaty of Waitangi. That is -sovereignty" in relation to Maori assets.

The Treaty is clear. in my view, that the sovereignty of New Zealand was vested to the British Crown, that Maori could continue ownership of their possessions and that any sale of land must be through the Crown. Further, that Maori became British subjects.

Many books and articles have been written on the Treaty over the years with a number of different views and emphases.

There can only be one sovereignty, and that is to the British Crown, coupled with the general understanding that we are one people.

There has been recent talk about renewing the teaching of New Zealand history in schools.

We were taught it in the 1950s, and I am not sure what has happened since

I have no problem with whatever the current teaching is being upgraded but it will be a shambles if it is not full and comprehensive.

There's a fair chance it will end up being very divisive, which is okay, provided we also look forward as a nation. (Abridged)
BILL CAPAMAGIAN Tauranga

NZ Herald 13/3/19
MAORI IN SCHOOLS
On Thursday night we attended a public meeting at Auckland Cathedral about the Tomorrow’s Schools review, anticipating an information-giving evening with robust debate. Instead, we had two hugely experienced Task Force members pitted against an educational economist and a retired Act politician, Richard Prebble. We were appalled by Mr Prebble’s address.

Most offensive was his statement that Maori and Pasifika students are responsible for New Zealand’s low standing in international comparisons, and therefore should be removed from the regular state education system. The applause in support was deeply troubling.

We would hope that the majority of New Zealanders would be as dismayed as we were, and share our hope for an inclusive and equitable public education system where all our children can flourish.
MARIANNE AND TERRY KAYES, Mount Eden.

Otago Daily Times 12/3/19 
RAHUI
DAVID Higgins, a ‘‘traditional leader’’, is reported as saying (ODT, 14.2.19) that ‘‘a rahui will be imposed from the south bank of the Kakanui’’. . . to Campbells Bay.

By what law, spiritual or temporal, is Mr Higgins dictating public activity?
BRUCE MASON, Ranfurly


TREMAIN CARTOON NOT HELPFUL FOR TREATY UNDERSTANDING
I understand the proud tradition of political cartooning, and the role of the cartoon in affecting opinion and crystallising common understandings — the ‘‘conventional wisdom’’ — and often grin wryly at Tremain’s ‘‘view’’, even as I cringe at his sometimes crass insensitivity.

But with freedom comes responsibility. The subtlety and potency of the cartoonist’s message should not dishonestly distort reality.

In his cartoon of March 5 (1840: Differing interpretations at the treaty signing), Tremain reinforces a racist viewpoint that I thought we’d moved on from.

The relevance of the Treaty to contemporary New Zealand is captured in a subtle, evolving, and empowering group of ideas. It doesn’t help — and is deeply dishonest and divisive — to pretend this is somehow an archaic overhang from a misguided past.

As a publisher, Allied Press can do better, for its reputation and for us.
MALCOLM MACPHERSON, Alexandra

[GARRICK TREMAIN REPLIES: Macpherson is correct. Politically correct, in the extreme!]

Bay of Plenty Times 12/3/19
NATION’S NAME
A recent television news report stated that China has concerns over the political stance of Aotearoa. Our nation is New Zealand. Not Aotearoa, New Zealand and certainly not just Aotearoa.

When will this insidious corruption of our nationality cease? When will this be seen by the Government as grossly unacceptable?

At the signing of the Treaty, Maori used Niu Tirani as the country’s name.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Rotorua Daily Post 12/3/19
LOSS OF TROUT FISHING COULD COST ROTORUA
As many concerned trout fishermen will be aware, the Green Party’s proposal to significantly change trout fishing as we know it today could potentially cost Rotorua in more ways than one.

Basically, the Green Party in conjunction with DOC is proposing with their Amendment to the Conservation Act to not only be able to close down complete hatcheries like ours, allow trout farming, allow trout to be sold, but to include trout and salmon’s future to be included in Treaty negotiations.

Their questionable rationale for this draconian recommendation is that in our lakes, for example, trout, and trout alone, are the sole reason for the decline in the six native freshwater species. One could argue that sure, trout have been a predator over the years, but certainly not the one and only reason for such a decline. Human activity is the prime reason, including agricultural land use, the general decline in water quality, Maori cultural harvesting, and of late the curse of the catfish.

Given that there have been no evidence-based figures to quantify the cost of such a significant change to our Rotorua catchment, one can only estimate the economic benefit today of trout fishing at around $60-80 million per anum.

Closer to home, we have the figure of $90m quoted by DOC in 2010 for the Taupo catchment.

Hence the figure for Rotorua, some nine years later is, I believe, realistic.

Accordingly, if the Greens, and any other party which may be brave enough to proceed with this knee- jerk reaction, then the cost to them, and the tourist dollar for Rotorua will be significant.
MIKE McVICAR, Rotorua

The Press 11/3/19
RACIST PROPOSAL
Fancy the Greens supporting a proposal that would see Environment Canterbury having a dedicated racist Ngai Tahu seat. Cantabrians have had to put up with an undemocratic council for many years since the National government (Nick Smith) showed its true colours, requiring us to pay rates to fund ECan but cancelled our democratic rights to vote for those who would spend our money. Their efforts over past years have succeeded in giving us polluted rivers, lakes, toxic areas of land and gifted away billions of litres of the pure water from our aquifers.

We have been given to believe that democracy was to be restored in the next election. However it now seems that if the undemocratic Greens have their way we will once again have a polluted ECan council.
BOB SANDERS, Bishopdale

Bay of Plenty Times 11/3/19
MAORI AND PACIFIC INCOMES AND OPPORTUNITIES”.
A few days ago it was reported Maori tribes had $9 billion invested, no doubt originally given to them by the Government to right past wrongs.

I have no issue with this but are the earnings from this huge sum helping their tribes “lift their incomes and opportunities”?

I hope so.
ANGELA DOLD, Tauranga

Waikato Times 9/3/19
DARE NOT, MR KING
Don’t you dare Mayor King.

I would be fairly confident that Mr. Maipi’s version of events at Rangiaowhia and Parihaka would be at variance to the accounts of many respected and well researched historians.

I would recommend that the mayor invite one or two to a similar closed meeting with him and councillors. While Mr. Maipi highlighted three individuals whose names he wants expunged for "murdering Maori" has he forgotten under whose instructions they were operating?

Given his reasoning shouldn’t the mayor and council also have in train a move to rename Victoria St?

When Mr Maipi vandalised a prominent city statue, without penalty, I suggested he had far too much publicity. I repeat that belief.
MURRAY REID, Hamilton

Nelson Mail 9/3/19
MILITARISTIC STATE
New Zealand has for the last two centuries been a militaristic state.

During the 19th century, military force was directed internally by the settler establishment to acquire land from the indigenous population.

Later, the country involved itself in foreign conflicts in a show of loyalty to the British crown.

The Second World War produced the first credible threat to this country. Following the war New Zealand followed the US into Korea and Vietnam while also involving itself militarily in Malaysia in countering the perceived threat of ‘‘world communism’’.

New Zealand has not been in danger from international aggression since the end of the Vietnam war. Danger in New Zealand comes from:

1. Failure to adequately resolve the residual problems of the Maori Land wars and confiscations.

2. Internal discord from those protesting unequal social conditions.

3. Unlikely terrorism from Islamic sources.

The time is now ripe to change New Zealand’s traditional military position.

I believe that a change to a neutral, non-military stance would immediately increase our security.
KERRY BATEMAN Nelson

Northern Advocate 9/3/19
RACIST, REALLY?
How precious can we get? To refer to a person by their race is racist? Really?

We have local Kiwis who want to identify as Indian with their Diwaii festival, Pacific Islanders with their current Northland Pasifica Fusion and the Asian? Chinese festival.

These people live here, contribute to the multicultural society we enjoy in a host of ways, but we must not refer to them by their proud race?

Soon we will not be polite if we refer to women, men, adults, children, let alone the new group, with a host of initials I cannot remember, and better not try or I will Insult them for sure and be called something fitting.
ROBIN LIEFFERING Whangarei

The Press 9/3/19
MAORI PARTICIPATION
Ensuring "strong Maori participation in local government", in Green MP Eugenie Sage's words, is already possible under current law - as she should know.

The Local Electoral Act 2001 enables councils to establish Maori constituencies/wards if they choose, and the Bay of Plenty Regional Council exemplifies this provision.

ECan is on record as having rejected this option "because any eligible elector can stand as a candidate in a Maori constituency and therefore Ngai Tahu... would not be guaranteed to be represented."

Thus, the issue at stake in ECan's Ngai Tahu Representation Bill is clearly not Maori representation as such; it is about whether a particular tribe - one which has ramifying environment-related commercial interests -should be guaranteed local government representation by nominees who are solely accountable to and beholden to that tribe.

This has precedent-setting nationwide constitutional Implications for local democracy that should not be considered in haste.
PETER TUFFLEY, Beckenham


NGAI TAHU SEATS
I am surprised Eugenie Sage says the Greens will support the bill guaranteeing Ngai Tahu two seats on future ECan councils (Mar 6).

Cantabrians want a democratically elected council, not more government appointees.

Of equal importance is the conflict of interest with Ngai Tahu's huge and growing farming interests, particularly as some of their recent actions would seem to fly in the face of what the Greens would call good practice.

The Productivity Commission states that to enable New Zealand to move to a low-emissions economy, we need to increase the land planted in forests by 1.4 to 2.8 million hectares.

Ngai Tahu has cleared more than 6700ha of the Eyrewell forest, replacing it with 14 farms and 14,000 dairy cows in an area already suffering from water degradation, and removed hundreds of thousands of trees from the Balmoral forest, currently grazing beef cattle, right beside the Hurunui River.

My personal view is that this amounts to environmental vandalism. I am surprised that the Greens are comfortable with this proposaL
CRAIG MINEHAN, Lyttelton

Weekend Sun / Sunlive 8/3/19
TIME TO TRANSFER
In 2009, Tauranga City Council bought 11 Mission Street for the Elms and a peppercorn rental was charged until ownership was transferred to it. The transfer has not yet occurred.

So why did councillors, other than Cr Brown, Cr Robson and Cr Stewart not support Mayor Brownless when he wanted to complete that ownership transfer?

Instead, they are half-way through transferring the ownership to a Maori Trust, but hopefully are yet to finalise the details.

Coming on top of the Phoenix Park debacle, where once again councillors did not support their Mayor, council is at risk of creating another fiasco.

It is incredibly important to support a national treasure like the Elms - it is, after all, our living museum which we are all proud of.

Leaders like Paul Adams, Des Farrow, Noel Pope, Jim Sherwood, Barbara Steel and TECT, to name just a few, have given thousands of dollars, as well as hours of voluntary time, to ensure that we have the Elms which we all love today.

We have to rely on council to do the right thing, and common sense says they should transfer 11 Mission Street to the Elms now.
M MURRAY-BENGE, Bethlehem.

Dominion Post 7/3/19
BENNEYDALE OK, MEADSVILLE TOO
As a resident of Benneydale, I read your report, Benneydale name change ruckus (March 4).

You’ll have noticed a telling point – despite your reporter making every effort, she was unable to find a single resident of Benneydale who favours the change of name proposed by the Maniapoto Maori Trust Board and their ally, the New Zealand Geographic Board.

Also, in this desperate attempt to make a sensational story out of just another partMaori demand, the report claims there is ‘‘a deep conflict’’ in Benneydale. As the report’s content affirms, all residents are not happy about a name change. There’s no conflict.

Benneydale was a town purpose-built in approximately 1940 to accommodate and service those employed in the large coal mine there and in nearby sawmills.

It was given the name Benneydale in honour of Messrs Benney and Dale, the under-secretary of mines and the mine superintendent respectively.

There is no Maori historical connection with this village that used to be a town, except that it’s claimed that some Maori chap is buried nearby, and another Maori chap once passed through the area.

There is a submission going to the geographic board that Te Kuiti’s name be changed to Meadsville. That has hugely more relevance.
LEO LEITCH, Benneydale

Northland Age 7/3/19
CHEAP PROPAGANDA
Readers will decide for themselves whether they support a capital gains tax, but the alleged reasons of Catherine Murupaenga-Ikenn (Wealth by theft, March 5) for doing so should not fool very many.

Yes of course the “tangata whenua,” by whom presumably she means the preEuropean inhabitants of this country — which was never called Aotearoa — did possess and used such wealth as existed in a Stone Age society, where the main occupation of the men was inter-tribal fighting, with killing, cannibalism and slavery on a colossal scale.

The wealth of New Zealand today is to a very great extent the result of the hard work of the colonists from Britain and elsewhere. Her claim that this wealth was “by nefarious means . . . stripped from Maori” is flagrant nonsense — cheap political propaganda.

And “kaitiatanga”? Extinction of the moa within a century, middens usually showing that only the best of flesh was eaten pre-European extinction of more than 30 species, hundreds of huia killed in the 1880s by Maori hunters only too glad to sell them for cash, commercial extinction today of the rich mutton bird colonies, the recent extinction of the Eyrewell beetle by Ngai Tahu destroying its habitat for a dairy farm. Some kaitiatanga!

Too many tribes today have become rich from the success of fraudulent claims to the Waitangi Tribunal, Ngai Tahu being a flagrant case, as there is ample evidence to establish.

And no tribe has a monopoly on compassion, generosity, care and protection today, whatever she may call them.
BRUCE MOON Nelson


A FEW FACTS
I would like to help Catherine Murupaenga-Ikenn out with a few facts.

1) Nothing was stripped from anybody in Aotearoa, because no such place exists, or existed. There is no reference to it in the 1835 Declaration of Independence or the 1840 Treaty of Waitangi.

2) The chiefs sold most of New Zealand’s land, evidenced by hundreds of Turtons Deeds. Only approximately 1.5 million acres (2.3 per cent) of New Zealand’s land mass of 66 million acres remained legally confiscated (from a few rebelling tribes) after 1928.

3) No home owner is compensated for the increased value of properties they once owned. Why should tribes be compensated? The land was minus forest cover, burnt off by earlier Maori generations to flush out game, there were no towns, roads, farms. There was no development whatsoever. The land only started to grow in value as settlers invested capital and labour, developing farms, building roads, towns, industry, schools, hospitals. Anyone who thinks the settlements that tribes are getting today are a shadow of what they should be receiving is woefully misinformed.

4) Are Maori indigenous? By their own admission they drifted here from somewhere else.

5) Currently many tribal authorities are registered as charities and pay little or no tax. What tax they do pay is at 17.5 per cent, whereas non-Maori counterparts pay 33 per cent. Yet Murupaenga-lkenn wants more race-based privilege in advocating for tribes to be exempt from capital gains tax?

A vast number of those who are classed as Maori have more European ancestry than Maori. It is high time New Zealand stopped pandering to this clamorous minority cult.
GEOFF PARKER Kamo

Waikato Times 7/3/19
WHERE ARE THE TREATY LESSONS?
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern did us all a great favour when she admitted, at Waitangi celebrations this year, she was unable to quote Article 1 of the treaty.

This subsequently revealed, to my total amazement and shock, that knowledge about the Treaty of Waitangi, and the historical causes leading up to its signing, are not taught in schools. How can this be?

It was my assumption, that after the 1975 Treaty of Waitangi Act, it would be an essential part of the curriculum, starting at primary level.

This founding document is of enormous importance to the nature of this country. It makes New Zealand very special amongst new world nations with colonial origins. I spoke to many overseas visitors at Waitangi this year. All were all aware of the Treaty, very impressed by it and how we had dealt with, and were there to experience the now positive celebrations.

What other country would ignore an essential part of their foundation?

In the USA teaching about the Declaration of Independence is compulsory. The French see as vital for all citizens to know about the French Revolution. All Italian children are taught about Garibaldi and the unification of Italy. Turkish students are well informed about Kemal Ataturk.

We owe it to our children, and ourselves, that they are equally well informed about this very important part of our nation's fine and proud history. Once again the Ministry of Education has been found wanting in carrying out its role.
RUSSELL O ARMITAGE, Hamilton

Hawkes Bay Today 6/3/19
ENOUGH MAORI INPUT
The Maori Joint Committee on the Hastings District Council should not be allowed to have a Maori member on each standing committee with full voting rights and remuneration.

Under Section 41 of the local Government Act 2002, only representatives elected under the Local Electoral Act 2002 are entitled to vote at full council meetings.

Three of the Hastings councils 14 councillor s are Maori so they are well represented according to their percentage of population.

Secondly, why haven't our council representatives informed the public about this possible move before now?
J STAFFORD Hastings

Northern Advocate 6/3/19
TAX SHOULD APPLY TO IWI
While any decisions on implementing the recommended tax review considering capital gains tax are still in the pipeline, discussion is rife and concerns are real.

While managing a fair and equitable means to tax iwi multi-owned land maybe problematic, this does not lead to exempting iwi from the capital gains tax altogether.

For years now iwi have been able to trade as charities with big businesses and profits and been exempt from paying any tax on income. This gives them advantages when applying for contracts in the commercial world and for government services. It is both unreasonable and unfair.
ROBIN LIEFFERING Whangarei

Northland Age 5/3/19
IS HISTORY BUNK?
As a retired school teacher, I was interested in Mr Moeahu’s recent comments in the media on school curricula.

As I spent much of my time teaching in Hawke’s Bay, I recalled a report from a teacher of 37 years’ experience who told of an incident that occurred in 1986 at Te Hauke School, south of Hastings. An advisor from the ministry arrived. A Maori woman, who demanded that all material at the school be reviewed and that any that related to the existence of Moriori, cannibalism, infanticide and any other negative aspects of Maori culture must be immediately destroyed.

Is this the sort of curriculum material that Mr Moeahu is seeking?
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Bay of Plenty Times 4/3/19
THE MADNESS REIGNS WITH CAPITAL GAINS
The capital gains tax, is aimed, in my view, at middle New Zealand again and baby boomers in particular.

A large proportion of us were crucified by Rogernomics and his looney tune policies that once again academics thought to be clever.

Labour are ready to release another devastating policy on us all and repeat the madness again.

We baby boomers have taken over 30 years to recover from the folly of Rogernomics, some never could.

The ones who have, accumulated something to aid their retirement, Labour wants to now steal in the name of a capital gains tax.

The wealthy will just move money offshore. The rest of the landlords will just sell off their rentals so not to be caught with tax and that will escalate the homeless situation.

How can Labour say this tax is fair when iwi will pay only 17.5 per cent and the rest of us will pay 33 per cent? Plus I guess it’s so fair Maori charities (with an income of millions) will still pay zero tax as usual.

Labour is showing what naive, incompetent bungling imbeciles they are.

We are overburdened with incompetent government departments instigating more time consuming compliance red tape and charges so producers cannot actually get to work and do their job.

“We are all equal just some are more equal than others.” (Abridged)
C HUMPHREYS, Katikati

Nelson Mail 2/3/19
REVIVING TE REO
In his regular Nelson Mail column, David Karena-Holmes shows in a nutshell the complete futility of trying to revive a dead language. It is a pipe dream to imagine that te reo Ma¯ ori can ever be restored to anything even approaching its original beauty and subtle, linguistic strength. By immense and very expensive educational efforts, we can create some sort of pidgin Maori, where we use Maori words to convey what we mean to say-but all the fine, meaningful nuances will be missing. I venture to say that it will prove physically impossible ever to revive to reo Maori in New Zealand.

Many thousands of languages have disappeared forever over the last 500 years' European onslaught on the world. None have been revived. Te reo Maori will be no exception. I believe that only Israel has ever managed to revive a dead language, namely Hebrew. And I suggest it took at least one generation of Israeli children to create a useful, effective grammar -because, strangely enough, only children seem to be endowed with that ability. For example, a generation have invented grammatical signs to better the sign language which was originally a blunt tool created by adults.
ANDY ESPERSEN, Nelson

Northland Age 28/2/19
DON’T BE SUCKED IN
People, don’t be sucked in by this capital gains tax. It is aimed at middle New Zealand again, and I believe us Baby Boomers in particular.

A large proportion of us were crucified by Rogernomics and his looney tune policies that once again academics thought to be clever. Maybe it was clever to send everyone broke, homeless, jobless etc. Labour are ready to release another devastating policy on us all and repeat the madness again.

We Baby Boomers have taken over 30 years to recover from the folly of Rogernomics, some never could. The ones who have accumulated something to aid their retirement, Labour wants to now steal in the name of capital gains tax, as all the economists say it would be one of the worst in the world.

The wealthy would just move money off shore. The rest of the landlords will just sell off their rentals so not to be caught with tax, and that will escalate the homeless situation, certainly increase rents. The only ones to benefit again is Maori business.

How can Labour say this tax is fair when Maori will pay only 17.5 per cent and the rest of us will pay 33 per cent. Plus, I guess it’s so fair that Maori charities (with an income of millions) will still pay zero tax as usual.

In my opinion Labour is showing what naıve, incompetent, bungling imbeciles they are. They do not have a business brain between them. They have been overseas for the last year giving away millions of our money to all and sundry!

Oh, whoops, we need some more money, better screw the middle class again, which is grinding productivity in New Zealand to a halt.

We are over-burdened with incompetent government departments instigating more time-consuming compliance red tape and charges so producers cannot actually get to work and do their job.

‘We are all equal, just some are more equal than others’.
C HUMPHREYS, Katikati


AND TRAFALGAR
While KH Kammler, in the Herald, eulogises the nautical feats of Hec Busby, he should remember that when Busby broke down on his promotional voyage it wasn’t a waka that towed him into port. He further disparages European ships by claiming that “double-hulled ships? (waka) could literally sail circles around them.”
I wonder how they would have done at Trafalgar?

It may be further noted that Hec Busby’s namesake, British resident James Busby, was referred to by Maori as ‘The Man of War without guns.’
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa


A MOST SIGNIFICANT DATE
It so very nearly succeeded! Had not a second check of the vaults of the Palace of Westminster found Guy Fawkes ready to ignite a colossal quantity of gunpowder, the King, the Lords and the Commons would all have been blown sky high in an instant.

The subsequent chaos in England can only be imagined, and how defenceless it would have been — 1066 all over again, a mere 17 years since the destruction of the Spanish Armada.

For the Spaniards, surely still thirsting for revenge, an invasion from their Netherlands possessions (Belgium) would have been easy — if the French had not got there first. In moments the hard-won liberties of the English people would have been swept away and a savage inquisition imposed.

Those liberties had not been won overnight. In 1215, by Magna Carta, two limits on royal power were established: the King was not above the law, and no taxes were to be levied without the consent of the governed.

Henry VIII, often considered an absolute monarch, and Charles I, could not evade them, the latter beheaded for his folly.

By a slow process the Commons gained power, Sir Peter de la Mare being appointed the first speaker of the House of Commons in 1376. The office of Black Rod was established in 1350, and Nicholas Maundit became the first Sergeant-at-Arms in 1415.

In 1721 Sir Robert Walpole became de facto Prime Minister, whose advice the monarch was bound to accept.

The ‘Westminster system’ was evolving. And that is what we have in New Zealand today, with appointments to all of these offices, albeit Black Rod is now purely ceremonial.

Indeed, would New Zealand as we know it exist — or Australia or Canada? Would India be a parliamentary democracy? Would those countries of Europe and others who have followed the Westminster model have done so if Guy Fawkes had succeeded? We have few more important dates than November 5, and very fittingly celebrate it as we choose to do.

There are some among us, however, who think that rather more important is the somewhat indefinite time each year, round about May-June, when a certain cluster of stars first appears on the dark horizon, known to Maori as Matariki. Being quite near the celestial equator, this cluster is visible for up to six months of the year from most populated places on Earth, and, being quite distinctive, it has been given many names.

It is the Seven Sisters in English — though when Galileo first looked at them through his telescope he found many more than seven. To the ancient Greeks it was the Pleiades, supposedly derived from the word ‘plein’ — to sailsince its heliacal rising. When it first became visible each year in the predawn darkness was the start of the Mediterranean sailing season. Even earlier it was MulMul to the Babylonians; it is mentioned three times in the Bible and was Mutsuraboshi in 8th century Japan.

The list is a long one — Thurayya to the Arabs, Kritika to Hindus and Makali’i to Hawaiians.

So the whole world knows about the Seven Sisters, but only we whose democracy has evolved as the Westminster system have good cause to be thankful for the failure of the Gunpowder Plot and to celebrate it.
BRUCE MOON, Nelson

NZ Herald 27/2/19
UNRELIABLE HISTORY
Peter Moeahu advocates using Treaty settlement apologies as school class resources for the teaching of New Zealand history.

Treaty claims are put forward by the tribes concerned, heard, selectively researched and then settlements recommended by a racially biased dysfunctional Waitangi Tribunal, which a compliant self-serving Government then rubber stamps. No outside independent individual or group are permitted to have any input into the process so it is erroneous and riddled with fallacies.

Foremost among them are allegations of rape by soldiers at the reclaiming of Parihaka. Under an Official Information Act request the then Treaty Negotiations Minister, Chris Finlayson, could not supply any evidence that would have supported even one conviction at a rape trial.

Yet by the stroke of Mr Finlayson’s pen the New Zealand taxpayer’s wallet was raided yet again and an official apology given.

This is not the sort of unsubstantiated myth-history anyone should be teaching our young impressionable schoolchildren.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo.

Northland Age 26/2/19
TEACHING MYTHS
Peter Moeahu (Taranaki Daily News 22nd February) advocates using Iwi Treaty settlement apologies as school class resources for the teaching of New Zealand history .
Treaty claims are put forward by the tribes concerned, heard, selectively researched and then settlements recommended by a racially biased dysfunctional Waitangi Tribunal, which a compliant self-serving Government then rubber stamps. No outside independent individual or group are permitted to have any input into the process so it is erroneous and riddled with fallacies.

One only has to visit http://tinyurl.com/y4fpm3ee where approximately 47 dodgy claims/settlements have been listed that expose the obvious flaws of this process and the fallacy of Mr.Moeahu’s suggestion.

Foremost on that list are the allegations of rape by soldiers at the reclaiming of Parihaka. Under an Official Information Act request the then Treaty Negotiations Minister, Attorney General Chris Finlayson could not even supply any evidence that would have supported even one conviction at a rape trial.

Yet by the stroke of Mr.Finlayson’s pen the New Zealand taxpayer’s wallet was raided yet again by creative tribalists plus an official apology was given.
This is not the sort of unsubstantiated myth-history anyone should be teaching our young impressionable schoolchildren.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo

Northern Advocate 26/2/19
`COLONISATION WORKSHOPS'
New Zealanders should be very worried about the "colonisation workshops" Merepeka Ruakawa-Talt mentions in her Editorial, February 16. By advocating dubious anti-colonist propaganda these nationwide workshops" fan the flames of racial hatred which divides our society.

Since 1840, many statutes have been passed with good Intention toward Maori. Today's creative agenda-driven activists twist those statutes to Imply "the Crown acted dishonourably".

Maori could not stay isolated in an exploring era and the benefits of British colonisation were many. Everything above the ground except for trees was built by European colonisers and allows the way of llfe we all enjoy today.

Any teaching of our history In `workshops" or schools must not be based on lies and myths, it must be impartial, unsantised and most Importantly factual. Speaking of which, Aotearoa never has been and is not the name of our country.

Further, Ruakawa-Tait and her friend Theo appear to be unaware of at least 20 race-based special privileges currently accorded to neo-Maori How does that equate to "undermining" Maori, as apparently Theo stated?

Lastly, the best way to "get even", Merepeka, is to ban all mention of race from our legislation, but I doubt your tribal elite would agree to that suggestion.
GEOFF PARKER Kamo

Herald on Sunday 24/2/19
MAORI HAVE BEEN GRANTED MANY SPECIAL PRIVILEGES
Since 1840 many statutes have been passed either at Maori’s request, to protect them, or to help them adapt to changing times. I surmise that the Maori exclusion in S3 Burial and Cremations Act 1964 falls into that class — who proposed it anyway? Peter Moeahu (Letters, February 10) labels this a form of apartheid, maybe it is.

However, since the 1970s-80s Maori have been granted many special privileges that are unquestionably apartheid — special Maori corporation tax rates, Maori-only consultation rights under the RMA, co-management of parks, rivers, lakes and coastline, seats on local councils, local government statutory boards, local government liaison committees, rights to NZ foreshore and seabed to name a few.

War was not waged against law-abiding Maori citizens as Mr Moeahu opines, the government subdued the activist tribes who were rebelling against the Queen’s sovereignty, the minimal land confiscations (much returned) were legal and inline even with Maori lore of the time. These rebellions were Treaty breaches. 

Mr Moeahu, I am sorry if my “tribal mafia” phrasing hit a raw nerve, but nationwide shadow groups and murky covert leadership outfits are exactly that.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo

The Press 23/2/19
CHARITIES ACT
Rather than hammer hard-working New Zealanders with a capital gains tax, the Government should be looking at changes to the Charities Act so that the businesses, trusts and corporate iwi who are masquerading as charities can beheld accountable and pay their share of tax.
JOHN STONE, Harewood

Dominion Post 23/2/19 (To the Point section)
A recent television news report stated that China has concerns over the political stance of Aotearoa. Our nation is New Zealand. Not Aotearoa New Zealand and certainly not just Aotearoa. When will this insidious corruption of our nationality cease? At the signing of the Treaty. Maori used Niu Tirani as the country's name.
BRYAN JOHNSON. Omokoroa

Dominion Post 22/2/19
THE SMALL PRINT
Justin Lester’s Adding, not taking away (Feb 15) was illustrated by a mock-up photo of the roundabout at the Calabar Rd/Cobham Drive intersection (opposite the northeastern corner of Wellington Airport) with a possible sign on it: the top third had in large lettering over two lines: ‘‘Heke mai ki Poneke’’.

The bottom half (at least) had line drawings of various Wellington landmarks; and squeezed between those two in print so small that at first glance it just looked like a line underlining the Maori writing, was the phrase: ‘‘Welcome to Wellington City’’, the part that the majority of visitors would have best understood if they could read the small print.

His last paragraph said: ‘‘Our vision is not about . . . promoting one language above another. It’s about adding, not taking away.’’

Could have fooled me.
ELIZABETH FRANKS, Camborne

NZ Herald 22/2/19
MAORI REPRESENTATION
After suffering a resounding defeat in a poll held over his efforts to establish Maori wards and having unelected Maori appointed to the council, it is time for the Western Districts mayor, Garry Webber, to stop trying to find other ways to get Maori in the back door and to start serving all the constituents who voted him into power. The time and expense he is spending in trying to subvert the democratic process will not enable him to reverse the dubious acclaim of representing the council with the highest rates in New Zealand.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa.

Taranaki Daily News 22/2/19
CHONG IS NOT WRONG
Good on you, Murray Chong. You are one of a few who has a backbone to stand up for your views and express them. John McLeod and you are the only two on the council over the years to have the courage and honesty to express opinions and work for the New Plymouth people, as you were elected to do. Too much PC stuff now. Keep doing a good job and we look forward to voting for you at the next election. Bring some more strong reliable people with you and let us get rid of the soft, easilyled councillors that we have.
P SMITH, Bell Block

Marlborough Express 22/2/19 
LACK OF FOCUS ON COOK
I note a small article in the Marlborough Express dated February 11 stating that "a sculpture celebrating New Zealand's dual heritage as part of the 250th Captain Cook commemorations has been narrowed down to four sites near Picton" and that "artists were being approached for input".

I have been concerned that the Totaranui 250 Trust, which is managing the Cook celebrations in Picton, does not have a satisfactory focus on the hero of the occasion.

The trust's first two aims are: "Iwi engagement" and celebrating "the unique place Marlborough holds in Maori and European voyaging history".

I am concerned at the lack of focus on Cook and his crew. Now I read that the Totaranui trust is planning a sculpture celebrating our dual heritage rather than Cook!

Surely before artists are approached for their input we need to appreciate that the most appropriate sculpture would be of Cook and his crew recognising their seamanship and exploration skills.
PAUL VERCOE, Picton

Dominion Post 21/2/19
VALUE ALTERED
The logic of our "take-away mayor" defies understanding. To say that restructuring existing organisations and places, and changing names, is "adding, not taking away" (Feb 15) shows a failure to understand the process.

When a name is changed, or an organisation restructured, existing ethos is taken away and something else is substituted. That is not value added, it is value altered, and recognition of the culture or intentions of the original architects is most definitely taken away.

Stripped of all his so-called rationale, all that his council is doing is replacing the European, Asian, African and other cultures of 85 per cent of the population with the culture of 15 per cent of the population.
LAURIE BOND, Wellington

Northland Age 21/2/19
NOT EVEN CLOSE
Assertions (ipse dixit) by treatyists, apologists and partMa¯ ori activists as is the norm, are usually based on creative fabricated myth-history, rarely coming anywhere near the truth or facts and exaggerated beyond recognition. February 6 sees these mistruths trotted out ad nauseum. What’s more, the ‘chosen few’ are no more indigenous than all Kiwis born in this country, and these souls are not and were never conservationists or environmentalists per se. Quite the reverse if history and past behaviour/ practices, like the destruction of moa and South Island forests, are anything to go by.

Claiming special race-based privileges aimed to score more of the valuable resources is a travesty. Entitlements claimed are usually to the detriment and cost of all other Kiwis. Non-productive, non-contributory parasites would be a good description for this bunch, who rabbit on like cracked one-tracked records with their invalid PC claptrap.

There is no place for race-based activists promoting neo-racism nor their fawning today sycophants, aka Awol Brain brigade.

The proposition that somehow New Zealand pre-1840 was a utopian Garden of Eden, and has since become Hades, is unmitigated, arrant nonsense. We have moved on over 200 years from Stone Age New Zealand, and even if there was any shred of truth in what is regularly promulgated, just get over the fictional Treaty principles and partnership nonsense, get on with life, stop navelgazing and seeking free lunches.

Remember there is nothing that succeeds like failure. “One of the consequences of such notions as ‘entitlements’ is that people who have contributed nothing to society feel that society owes them something apparently just for being nice enough to grace us with their dubious presence. No society has ever thrived because it had a large growing class of parasites living off those who produce.” (Thomas Sowell).
ROB PATERSON, Matapihi


INSIDIOUS CORRUPTION
A recent television news report stated that China has concerns over the political stance of Aotearoa. Our nation is New Zealand. Not Aotearoa New Zealand, and certainly not just Aotearoa.

When will this insidious corruption of our nationality cease? When will this be seen by government as grossly unacceptable?

At the signing of the Treaty, Maori used Niu Tirani as the country’s name.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa


TURN OUT THE LIGHTS
Recently Ms Ardern talked with embattled Teresa May about the Brexit mess, including free trade deals post Brexit – silly me, I thought only governments negotiated those things.

She then attended the Davos Climate Conference, hob-nobbing with fellow ‘space’ travellers fossil David Attenborough and the hypocritical Al Gore, who waxed lyrical about New Zealand success with exterminating rodents and its carbon emissions stance.

Germany, the champion of unlimited immigration stuffing up, open borders world refugee problems, and plunging Europe into disarray, then gets on to our case, belly-aching we don’t have a written constitution, - so what? It’s flexible and good, much better than Germany’s efforts methinks.

It then proceeds to criticise the socioeconomic differences between overall policies for all Kiwis vs Maori and Pacific interests. The simple solution, send everything to Germany. It will be a win win situation for all other countries, and turn to custard very quickly.

The prime Minister was criticised for being overseas and not attending the recent irrelevant Ratana bunfight - why should she? We are a secular society, and Ratana currently is a race- based political-orientated religious sect.

To finish off the loose cannon thinking, Ms Ardern then rabbited on about a 2019 ‘Wellbeing” budget, under which everyone magically gets a suck of the sav while also sharing all the inevitable miseries.

Meanwhile, Mr Little, elsewhere before UN Human Rights Review Council, Geneva, bleating about effects of 200 years’ colonisation – imprisonment, incarceration, feminism, gender discrimination. UN Review outfit is a joke.

Mr Peters meanwhile was compromising our immigration controls under the Global Immigration Pact on the basis that the terms were not binding yeah right! Several major countries refused to sign, and many only paid lip service, because they never intended abiding by its terms.

It will have exactly the same effect as similar try-ons if past performances are anything to go by, otherwise why bother to have a meaningless non -binding accord at all?

Finally, welcome to the jungle, banana republic Venezuela. Our leftist, socialist counterpart is in the poo, undemocratic and autocratic, yet Ms Ardern refuses to criticise or penalise it.

Why? Because universally socialism is based on arrogance, envy and equal sharing of miseries. Just ask the ordinary people in Venezuela.

Our screwball politicians have no mandate from the electorate to go on the international stage and float their phobias and leftist agendas, nor to demean this country. Most Kiwis would not support this insidiousness. I challenge any rational person to pick the bones out of that lot of garbage and find a silver lining.
ROB PATERSON Mount Maunganui


BREACHING THE TREATY
The government should reaffirm its commitment made by the Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at Waitangi to uphold the principles of the Treaty.

The third article of the Treaty declares the Crown’s commitment to provide protection for the lives of Maori from conception to natural death. The weakest and most defenceless member of the Maori family is the unborn child. The government believes abortion, the killing of a child in the womb, should no longer be a crime and should now be “a reproductive choice for women”.

It should be a matter of concern for Maoridom and the whole community that the government proposes to remove this protection, provided by the Crimes Act since 1856.

Right to Life believes the decriminalisation of abortion would be a breach of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Right to Life wrote to the Minister of Maori Development, Hon. Nanaia Mahuta, in June 2018, requesting that she refer our submission to the Waitangi Tribunal for a decision, but she declined to do this, stating it would be inappropriate. We also wrote in December 2018 to Hon Kelvin Davis, Minister for Maori Crown Relations, who also declined.

The Minister of Justice proposes there would be no statutory test until 22 weeks’ of pregnancy.

After 22 weeks, the health practitioner intending to perform an abortion would need to be satisfied the abortion is appropriate, having regard to the woman’s physical and mental health and wellbeing.

Right to Life believes this represents a complete withdrawal of protection for women and their unborn from abortion, including Maori. In the view of Right to Life, this would be a breach of Article 3 of the Treaty of Waitangi. (Abridged: Editor)
KEN ORR Right to life

Bay of Plenty Times 21/2/19
BASE THE TEACHING OF HISTORY ON FACTS
Tommy Wilson (Opinion, February 8) supports a call for the teaching of New Zealand history.

This call, it seemed to me, is only for the teaching of colonial history which can be reinterpreted and rewritten and so give Maori, in my opinion, the opportunity to pull on a new korowai of victimhood to improve their ideological and financial position.

I favour the teaching of New Zealand history, but any history syllabus must be based on verifiable fact and not misty-eyed supposition.

It must also include the parts of history Maori are reluctant to acknowledge.

For example, in 1773 the killing and eating at Wharehunga Bay, Queen Charlotte Sound of 10 men from the Adventure, the sister vessel of James Cook’s Resolution; Te Rauparaha’s blood-drenched rampage through the South Island; the annihilation of the Moriori by Ngati Mutunga and Ngati Tama.

Cannibalism, slavery, female infanticide must be addressed.

Leave out these and we will have a warped and incomplete view of our history which will do little more than create resentment and further divide our society.
RICHARD PRINCE, Tauranga


LEAVE SEPARATENESS BEHIND
Much has recently been said about the Treaty of Waitangi. It should be taught in schools. We should understand its meaning(s?).

However, to fully understand the Treaty we must also know the conditions and circumstances of the times of its signing – not only the arrival of settlers but the brutal, intertribal warfare, slavery and cannibalism that preceded it.

There was also the enlightening teaching of the missionaries encouraging Maori leaders to seek more peaceful ways.

The arguable disparity between the two versions of the Treaty – English and Maori – should not be unexpected.

The oral Maori language had only just been reinterpreted in written form by the missionaries. Not all meanings from one language to another are readily and fully translatable – some may be quite unique.

What should be acknowledged is that the Treaty was the only one signed by settlers and indigenous people during the colonisation period – the only attempt to establish fair and just equality (not always implemented by both sides) in newly colonised territories.

With 179 years of living together and the mixing of races, the separateness of our early beginnings should be behind us. We can only truthfully describe ourselves as “New Zealanders” and not be digging up the past for “differences” and “separateness”.
EDDIE ORSULICH, Otumoetai

Waikato Times 21/2/19
WHO NEEDS HISTORY?
We all do, but it is highly unlikely that we will ever get it in a form that bears much relationship to fact. History in itself is simple. "What happened, where and when".

Unfortunately vested interests over the past 40 years have very effectively twisted, embellished and altered so much of this country's past that some events are no longer recognisable.

The best example is the Treaty of Waitangi. Queen Victoria had no need to enter into a treaty and certainly was only going to do it on her terms. Constitutionally she was unable to form a partnership with her subjects, yet today that is what many think she did.

She offered equal British citizenship to all inhabitants and land rights, in return for recognition of her right to govern. Those who signed fully understood those intentions. To say otherwise is a slur on their abilities.

Any analysis of the treaty, must be in the context of the previous 30 years. Those same vested interests have no intention of discussing Musket Wars, slavery or female infanticide. We also want to forget that the French and possibly Americans had strong interests in the country. We also overlook the fact that a few enlightened chiefs actually asked Victoria to bring law to the country. The treaty did exactly that. Another example very close to home is an event soon to be remembered at Rangiaowhia.

Using school children as pawns vested interests have managed to paint this event as an atrocity with the oft repeated story that British soldiers rounded up women and children (some say 100 or more), locked them in a church and set fire to it. That simply

didn't happen and any reputable historian could cite at least three references that indicate the church was still standing many years later. Again, we aren't interested in the earlier 25 years of effort, initiated by Gov. Grey, that saw both the Anglican and Catholic missionaries establish schools and bring British agriculture methods to the area with huge success.

In 1863 when Gen. Cameron rode into the valley his strategy was merely to prevent the supply of food to the warriors in a nearby pa, with as few casualties as possible. He achieved that and probably saved hundreds of lives in the process. Today we are just too eager to think the worst of what in essence was a minor skirmish, made worse by one hothead who chose not to surrender. The examples above are just two reasons why I don't believe we will ever receive the history we need, and deserve.
MURRAY REID, Leamington

Rotorua Daily Post 21/2/19
CULTURAL RIGHTS
Why did the council not celebrate Waitangi Day? Is it because the Treaty's articles run counter to what I see as their belief in co-governance via an exclusive partnership?

Recall, in the first article of the Maori version of the Treaty, the chiefs ceded government over their land absolutely and forever to the Queen of England. In the second, the Queen agreed to protect chieftainship over lands, villages and treasures, and that land would only be sold at agreed prices to the Queen’s purchasing agents. In the third, the ordinary people were given the same citizenship rights and duties as the people of England.

Nothing on partnership or co-governance. That interpretation was invented in the late 20th century. Indeed, in November 2000, David Lange argued: “Democratic government can accommodate Maori political aspiration in many ways. It can allocate resources in ways which reflect the particular interests of Maori people. It can delegate authority and allow the exercise of degrees of Maori autonomy. What it cannot do is acknowledge the existence of a separate sovereignty. As soon as it does that, it isn’t a democracy. We can have a democratic form of government or we can have indigenous sovereignty. They can’t coexist and we can’t have them both.”

My view is that celebrating the Treaty of Waitangi is important to prevent cultural rights being elevated over the equal rights of citizens — which would be unwise because it could undermine democratic sovereignty, private property rights and equality under the rule of law.
REYNOLD MACPHERSON, Rotorua

Gisborne Herald 20/2/19
OPPOSITE OF ‘ANTI-TREATY’
In your story yesterday, about plans to mark the 250th anniversary of James Cook’s arrival in what is now the Gisborne region, you referred to Hobson’s Pledge as “an anti-Treaty of Waitangi lobby group”. This is not only totally wrong, it is the very reverse of the truth.

The Treaty of Waitangi was an extraordinary document for its time, indeed for any time — nothing like it happened anywhere else on the planet.

It provided for several things, including that all New Zealanders, irrespective of when they or their ancestors came to New Zealand, should have the same political rights.

Fantastic.

Those involved in Hobson’s Pledge celebrate that.

I believe The Gisborne Herald should retract its totally incorrect statement, and apologise to Hobson’s Pledge and all those who want equal political rights for all New Zealanders.
DON BRASH, Co-spokesperson for Hobson’s Pledge, Auckland

FOOTNOTE FROM EDITOR: We have changed the description of Hobson’s Pledge in the online version of this article to “a lobby group that opposes alleged favouritism”. Also, having received a column from Peter Bacos this morning, we have changed the description of him from “researcher” to “Lower Hutt resident”.

Dominion Post 19/2/19
LESTER’S IDEA OF VIRTUE
I wonder if Wellington Mayor Justin Lester and his councillors are aware of the aversion of the average adult New Zealander to having someone else’s idea of virtue forced upon them (Adding, not taking away, Feb 15).

Te reo Maori is being promoted currently by the council and certainly those who wish to learn the language should be assisted to do so. However, if the percentage of those in New Zealand who can speak Maori as quoted on RNZ National recently is accurate, that is, 4 per cent, then it is obvious that even Maori are not learning the language in order to cherish and preserve their taonga.

Most of those who do not identify closely with Maori culture will be even less inclined to do so. Any form of compulsion will be counter-productive.

The council’s aims are worthy and well-intentioned. I do not think they will work. Individuals will make the city bilingual or not. The majority of individuals, to date, do not want to or are unable to put in the effort to become bilingual.

Despite the millions of taxpayer dollars that have been directed to te reo, for example to provide a television channel and numerous iwi radio stations, little that is tangible has resulted.

Wellington City Council will spend money renaming or adding to street names and places, even inventing new Maori words.

I am a ratepayer who objects to this expenditure. It is a feel-good exercise that smacks of flavour of the month.
CAROL BROWN, Aro Valley

Waikato Times 19/2/19
TREATY DIVISIVE
Our TV presenters, radio jocks and newspaper journos say Waitangi Day is a celebration of the signing of the Treaty in 1840.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi was signed on 6th February 1840, but the treaty that Maori celebrate today is the reconstructed and reinterpreted document that now reads of "principles, partnerships, forestry and fisheries" etc. None of these words can be found in Te Tiriti o Waitangi signed by 565 rangatira.

My question is, how can an innocent document signed 179 years ago between two cultures, become over time, (1975-2019) such a racially divisive and historically distorted document.
MAUREEN J ANDERSON, Tauranga

Bay of Plenty Times 19/2/19
HISTORY CAN’T BE SELECTIVE
Tommy Wilson says that “surely, the time has come, for schools to teach our history hakihaki (warts) and all” (Opinion, February 8).

This clearly should start at the time that Maori first arrived and include the pre-european Archaic and Classic periods. Periods that were characterised by a trend away from pacifism to a warrior culture, cannibalism, the development of weapons, tribal fights that killed more people than during the European-maori wars and the biggest battle ever fought on NZ soil. In fact, not unlike the “unbridled greed” Tommy notes was occurring in Europe. We should also note the hunting to extinction of many bird and other species.

Only by starting at the very beginning can we get a true appreciation of the influences and impacts, both positive and negative, that humans have had on this country over time.
B INGRAM, Papamoa

Dominion Post 18/2/19
IGNORING LOGIC
The appalling redundancies of science experts at Te Papa and the increasing dominance of Maori placenames in Wellington city seem to be indicative of a more general national trend to ignore science and logical thinking, replacing it with populist dogma.

Our national museum should reflect the best in New Zealand science and research, not be a dumbed-down display area.

I do not object to bilingual signs as such, but I do object to signs with either no English at all or Maori wording four times the size of the English wording.

We have a Treaty of Waitangi, but it should not lead to the views of some 15 per cent of the population replacing a rational and scientific approach to life and social development. If we go too far down these paths our future as a first-rate nation may be in doubt.
TIMOTHY JOHN SKINNER, Upper Hutt

Hawkes Bay Today 18/2/19
NOT INDIGENOUS
Re opinion in Tuesday's paper "Treaty's true partnership".

Maori are not indigenous.

Australian aborigines, American Indians are indigenous. Indigenous means originating or occurring naturally in a particular place.

The Chinese were here in the15th century. The upside down remains of 80 vessels are visible today on the coast from Catlins to Moeraki and on Banks Peninsula. The Moeraki boulders are not natural formations, they are weights used to raise and lower the sails on giant junks.

These junks traversed the globe, not eating but embracing the cultures they came across, gaining knowledge. There are signs of them everywhere — ancient canals in Marlborough, gardens in Palliser Bay, a smelter in Akaroa, the Kaimanawa wall, mouldering remains in the Kaingaroa forest.

New Zealand government and Maori historians are presented as deliberately obstructing and even conspiring to hide the truth required to toe aparty line about our past.
CHRIS MACKRELL, Havelock North 
 
Herald on Sunday 17/2/19
SPECIAL PRIVILEGE
Peter Moeahu (Letters, February 10) blithers on about Section 3 Burial and Cremations Act 1964 striving to get local council handouts to maintain urupa sites.

Yes, part-Maori can be ratepayers with the right to be buried in any public cemetery with all other Kiwis (equality of choice) yet often choose to be buried in private Maori urupa for cultural and other indeterminate reasons. Being Maori land of this type, likely no rates are paid on it nor do the recipients presumably pay plot fees nor anything else relating to this race-based special privilege.

In these circumstances in return for this special deal, then tribes and families must maintain their “private” cemeteries, not taxpayers or ratepayers.

Perhaps Mr Moeahu is prepared to undertake some proper background research to enlighten us as to how the 1964 statutory provision came about and at whose request Section 3 appeared in the legislation.

The answer is probably obvious, viz. it freed Maori from control on their customary burial grounds, enabling them to run them as they saw fit and gave them rights other Kiwis do not have, while avoiding compliance costs.
ROB PATERSON, Mount Maunganui

Sunday Star Times 17/2/19
TREATY TRANSLATION
Peter Dey (Letters, February 10) twists the truth again. Governor William Hobson's final draft of the Treaty of February 4, 1840, was accurately translated overnight in the Ngapuhi dialect by the Williamses, father and son.

"Kawanatanga" meant "sovereignty" and "rangatiratanga" meant "possession", granted to all the people of New Zealand. Furthermore, the chiefs who spoke at Waitangi knew this.

"Partnership" is a modern fabrication.

Dey's claim that land was "stolen" from Maori owners is not a "myth". About 2.3 per cent was confiscated from rebel tribes in accordance to their custom to pay in part for the suppression of their rebellions.
BRUCE MOON, Nelson 
 
Hawkes Bay Today 16/2/19
PLEASE QUOTE THE ACTUAL DOCUMENT WHEN QUOTING THE TREATY
After reading the views of Napier museum’s “curator of taonga Maori” I suggest that there should be a basic rule that whenever someone quotes the Treaty of Waitangi they should quote the actual Treaty.

It is really quite simple:

Through Article 1, the chiefs ceded forever the entire sovereignty of their country to Queen Victoria.

Article 2, the Queen confirmed that the chiefs, tribes and people of New Zealand owned what they owned (their lands, dwelling and property).
If the chiefs wished to sell any land they agreed to sell it to an agent of the Queen at prices agreed between them.

Article 3, the Queen promised the Maori people of New Zealand protection and the rights of British subjects.

Te Hira Henderson should point to the parts of the Treaty, either in Maori or English, which says that “its purpose was to allow Victoria to govern her colonial settlers while they lived in Aotearoa, to share resources back to the Queen, to have a partnership with the natives while protecting native land and rights, as natives, to their own resources”.

Te Hira should also point to the part of the Treaty that names New Zealand “Aotearoa” rather than “Nu Tirani”. (Abridged)
SARAH TAYLOR, Napier Hill

Dominion Post 15/2/19
WCC ON DANGEROUS PATH
Ratepayers have no idea why the council decided to make the city bilingual by 2040 (Foster opposes to reo only, Feb 14).

Less than 10 per cent of the population are likely to identify as Maori, and some 2 per cent of the population speak the Maori language fluently.

This is a multicultural city where the English language is essential for every aspect of daily life, except for an even smaller percentage of the population.

Councillor Jill Day justifies the policy saying "it actually allows us to celebrate the culture and heritage that we have in this city".

She is on shaky ground comparing the predominant British and European cultures of the city with the Maori culture, to support the claim that the Maori contribution requires that the city be bilingual.

She says later "when Wellington was named, I'm pretty sure the Maori community wasn't consulted on that".

The city owes its existence and prosperity primarily, even solely, to its English colonists.

Maori place names have a role, but should not subvert the names of contributors to its growth.

A street name in both the Maori and English languages would be a foolish compromise.

The council is on a dangerous path. Non-Maori have pride in their ancestors too.
MIKE WILLIAMS, Tawa

Hawkes Bay Today 15/2/19
BRITISH GAVE MAORI THE BEST DEAL THEY EVER OFFERED
The British were not the most benevolent people when it came to colonising other countries, but neither were they stupid.

Maori were given the best deal ever offered to a prospective colony.

It was not negotiated with a Maori nation but a vast number of tribes at war with each other and in danger of extinction.

To accept that the British would enter a partnership with all these divided tribes is ridiculous.

Maori were assured equal rights withalL British citizens while renouncing sovereign authority.

While acknowledging there were many breaches of the Treaty, these are being addressed and settlements must become full and final so we can all become one people—New Zealanders.
MURRAY CHRISTISON Napier

Taranaki Daily News 15/2/19
HOW MANY TIMES SHOULD CHONG APOLOGISE?
The Daily News (February 13) has front page article regarding Murray Chong not turning up at a meeting to apologise the second time for a comment he truthfully made in answer to a question.

Today, the 14th, we have a front-page repeat and I am sure the Daily News has plenty of ammo for worthy front-page news.

How many times do you expect Murray to apologise, and what for? He was asked a question, and he answered. Was he expected to be a hypocrite and tell a lie because a truthful answer might upset those who search to be upset at the least excuse, along with the snowflakes and cry-babies that seem so prevalent today?

I would like to have seen the mayor show some leadership, not bow to a vocal few and not entertain the second apology. Keep this up and we could well have another one-term mayor.

The deputy mayor could show some pride in his local patch and arrange for the northern "Welcome to Inglewood" area to be tidied up. For months it has not been a good look.

We saw the media, which seems to delight in dragging this type of news out way past its use-by date, make a mountain over the Hawera Lions float recently with numerous apologies the Lions and other were "seemingly required" to make, with very few praising the Lions for what they do for the community in their own spare time. Do we have a repeat coming?

Keep this type of criticism up and soon top class councillors like Murray Chong, and Service Clubs like the Lions, will say stuff it, I don't need this and am outta here.
BRUCE RAYNER Inglewood


STICK TO THE CORE BUSINESS PLEASE,
New Plymouth Council, get a grip on what is important. Why is Murray Chong continuously being vilified? He has apologised. Drop it.

We still live in a country where we have a free will, and if anyone doesn't feel comfortable doing something, then that is their right.

Mr Hadley pushed Murray Chong's chair back and threw his name badge. I for one think he should apologise for his disrespect of Mr Chong and the council chamber.

If you were someone who was trying to come to terms with a terminal illness, this childish behaviour would be put in its proper perspective.

Stop trying to bully a councillor into doing it your way. Stick to the core business of running this city for the benefit of New Plymouth and its people, not the egos of councillors and mayor.
W A WEST New Plymouth

Otago Daily Times 14/2/19
CIVIS COLUMN
THE Passing Notes by Civis (ODT, 9.2.19) are a gross perversion of the truth as are the two documents which she/he quotes.

One is the second article of the fake treaty composed by Hobson’s snobbish secretary, Freeman, to send to overseas dignitaries as he considered that Hobson’s simple wording was inappropriate.

The other is Kawharu’s alleged translation of the Treaty in which he committed the cardinal blunder (deliberately?) of quoting the current meaning of ‘‘taonga’’, not its very different 1840 meaning.

The only document from which the true meaning of the Treaty can be established is Hobson’s final draft of February 4, in which the rights of possession of property are affirmed to ALL the people of New Zealand.

That may stick in Civis’ craw, but it is the truth.
BRUCE MOON, Nelson

Taranaki Daily News 14/2/19
ANTHEM APOLOGY NO-SHOW
So it’s front page news today, February 13, for a matter which had seemingly been settled some time ago. Mayor Neil Holdom is quoted as saying: ‘‘People have been hurt and damage has been done to the reputation of the district and the council.’’ Really? As I have previously said to this council – Get a spine. Councillor Murray Chong apologised at the time for saying he was ‘‘ashamed’’ to sing the te reo version of the national anthem. Now he is gracious enough to allow that the mayor had been ‘‘forced’’ into his current position by a few councillors.

If that is so, one must wonder whether those councillors have enough to occupy their minds. And why does his worship have to ‘‘recommend’’ that the Chief Executive prepare a motion for council to consider whether it is appropriate to remove Chong from his committee chairmanship? Mayor Holdom’s spin team is clearly setting the scene for this year’s elections. Best of luck to them, I say. Recent history tells us the people of New Plymouth are more than able to think for themselves.
PAUL A CATCHPOLE, New Plymouth

Northland Age 14/2/19
A MAGNIFICENT GIFT
The so-called ‘Treaty’ of Waitangi has sometimes been called the Maori Magna Carta, and that is indeed a correct assessment.

In one fell swoop it granted to all the ordinary people of New Zealand the full rights and privileges of the people of England. These rights had taken the English people no less than 625 years to secure, often associated with bitter struggles with kings and a bitterly-fought civil war. Yet with a few strokes of a quill pen, all Maori were released from the tyranny of their chiefs’ capricious whims, not least of which was the casual killing and eating of a slave girl as a ready source of protein.

Imagine that - a magnificent gift indeed! Yet, and here’s the rub, what was agreed gave them not one whit more rights than any other British subject - no fake “partnership” based solely on the silly opinion of a fundamentally silly man, Robin Cooke, no special rights to our foreshore and seabed, no special rights to natural water, all excluded by English common law from May 1840, when British sovereignty was formally declared over all of New Zealand.

Apart from that one enduring provision of their equal rights, this semi-formal agreement had by then fulfilled its purpose and became no more than one step in our constitutional progress.

All simply all, racist propaganda today which asserts a nonsensical “partnership” between the Queen and Maori tribes and fake “principles of the treaty” is nothing but a blatant power grab by the tribal elite for privileges and power which the rest of our sleepy and complaisant people permit successive governments to bestow upon them. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance. We forget that at our peril.
BRUCE MOON, Nelson

SCOTTISH HERITAGE
The article in the ‘Dominion Post’ January 29, ‘Gaps in heritage protection found.’ This seems to be about preserving Maori heritage only, not any other pre-Maori people.

Grey District Mayor Tony Kokshoorn says that Maori were here on the West Coast in 1300, and the Pakeha never arrived here until 1864, when gold was discovered. Which is wrong. Maori never arrived there until the 1500s. Even Waitaha were here working the greenstone before Maori.

But in 1120 two brothers, Taine Ruairidh Mhor and Taine Rory Mhor, were exiled from Scotland . King Alexander 1 of Scotland exiled them, having had them incarcerated for three years in a Scottish castle dungeon, then carried to the Far Land (old name for New Zealand).

A total of 90 family members sailed to settle on both islands, half dropped off in the North Island other half in the South Island, in the West Coast area. So if any heritage sites are found they could belong to Taine Ruairigh Mhor’s family, not to Maori.

When Wanganui Mayor Hamish McDouall said there were no clear rules in the Wanganui district plan governing the destruction of Maori heritage, this obviously needed to be addressed. But the council were prepared to change the spelling of Wanganui by inserting an ‘h’ in it as they wanted it to be a Maori name, which it isn’t. It’s a Waitaha name, as they were living here before the arrival of the Maori. So they changed the heritage name, which had been in place for over 100 years.

"We keep saying that the New Zealander today is unique, often without appreciating what that means. "
IAN BROUGHAM, Wanganui


A NON-EVENT
Why on Earth is Anahera Herbert-Graves harping on about He Whakaputanga/1835 Declaration of Independence (February 5)? This non-event was cobbled together by James Busby and fell apart within two years, the few involved chiefs never met in congress, never drafted any laws, and were at war with each other shortly after signing it.

Perhaps Herbert-Graves can supply evidence of any congress meetings and/or laws created by the chiefs in the years between 1835 and 1840? In a nutshell, no nationwide functioning government came into being as a result of the 1835 DOI.

I agree the Maori language Treaty was the only Treaty her tribe and most tribes signed, but in that signing rangitiratanga translated as ‘possession’ in Article 2. Were Hobson, Busby and Williams that inept to draft an agreement ceding sovereignty (kawanatanga) in Article 1, then to contradict it in Article 2 that Maori somehow retained sovereignty?

The only logical meaning for rangitiratanga in the context of the Treaty is ‘possession’; Article 2 relates to property rights, not sovereignty.

Herbert-Graves seems unaware of Tamati Waka Nene’s (Ngapuhi) headstone at Russell’s Christ Church that clearly says he was the first to welcome the Queen’s sovereignty in New Zealand.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo


NO SURPRISE
That the Prime Minister did not know the articles of the Treaty is not surprising, as it appears neither does any other Cabinet minister or Member of Parliament, otherwise they would not have allowed its corruption over the past 50 years.

The Prime Minister, acknowledging that she could not quote the articles, said, “I know the principles well”. No principles are mentioned anywhere in the document. She is only perpetuating the erroneous inclusion of the fake principles and partnership in the document.

The Treaty is not our founding document. Its sole purpose was to enable the chiefs to grant sovereignty to the Queen, in perpetuity, and in doing so New Zealand came under the legal control of the Colony of New South Wales.

Our ‘founding document’ is Queen Victoria’s Royal Charters/Letters Patent, which made us a self-governing colony. This document has been hidden away in Archives and conveniently ignored by politicians and Maori Treaty revisionists.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa


WHO NEEDS HISTORY?
We all need history, but it is highly unlikely that we will ever get it in a form that bears much relationship to fact.

History in itself is simple; what happened, where and when.

Unfortunately, vested interests over the past 40 years have very effectively twisted, embellished and altered so much of this country’s past that some events are no longer recognisable.

The best example is the Treaty of Waitangi.

Queen Victoria had no need to enter into a treaty, and certainly was only going to do it on her terms.

Constitutionally she was unable to form a partnership with her subjects, yet today that is what many think she did.

She offered equal British citizenship to all inhabitants, and land rights, in return for recognition of her right to govern. Those who signed fully understood those intentions. To say otherwise is a slur on their abilities.

Any analysis of the Treaty must be in the context of the previous 30 years. Those same vested interests have no intention of discussing Musket Wars, slavery or female infanticide. We also want to forget that the French, and possibly Americans, had strong interests in the country. We also overlook the fact that a few enlightened chiefs actually asked Victoria to bring law to the country. The Treaty did exactly that.

Another example very close to home is an event soon to be remembered at Rangiaowhia.

Using school children as pawns, vested interests have managed to paint this event as an atrocity with the oft repeated story that British soldiers rounded up women and children (some say 100 or more), locked them in a church and set fire to it. That simply didn’t happen, and any reputable historian could cite at least three references that indicate the church was still standing many years later.

Again, we aren’t interested in the earlier 25 years of effort, initiated by Governor Grey, that saw both the Anglican and Catholic missionaries establish schools and bring British agriculture methods to the area, with huge success.

In 1863, when General Cameron rode into the valley, his strategy was merely to prevent the supply of food to the warriors in a nearby pa, with as few casualties as possible.

He achieved that, and probably saved hundreds of lives in the process.

Today we are just too eager to think the worst of what in essence was a minor skirmish, made worse by one hothead who chose not to surrender.

The examples above are just two reasons why I don’t believe we will ever receive the history we need, and deserve.
 MURRAY REID, Leamington


THE REAL EYE-OPENER
It is entirely appropriate that Kiwis should commemorate 'Te Tiriti o Waitangi (legitimate Maori version) on February 6, each year at the Treaty grounds (incidentally maintained and funded by Kiwi taxpayers), with free entry to everyone wanting to attend —mind you, why some groups were there this year God only knows. The Treaty may be a benign (historic relic) founding document, but was never a constitutional document, nor for that matter was it ever recognised as a treaty at international law.

Waitangi Day is not a time for political activism, bleating for entitlements or angst. It should just be a day of celebration. Decorum and due reverence are not the norm, and the event usually degenerates into a circus, which fortunately this year was not really evident.

The so-called Lower and Upper marae can at their own cost do whatever they like on their own patches. Interestingly the fawning Governor-General and Prime Minister were there five days early, kowtowing to Ngapuhi interests. In my view it was strange the waka was not launched, apparently because would cost $30,000— why can't Ngapuhi put their shoulders to the wheel and voluntarily make it happen without money-grubbing or with minimal financial assistance? Clearly there was no pride involved here, just another meal ticket.

Refreshingly, Simon Bridges effectively acknowledged that Don Brash's 2004 Orewa speech was neither hateful nor infamous. He could hardly say otherwise, because, after all, it was a factual, praiseworthy and a courageous assessment of the position which frankly is still supported by most Kiwis.

The Waitangi eye-opener was that Ardern, Little and Shaw, when questioned by TVNZ, couldn't recount what Article 1 in the Treaty stated, which reeks of ignorance/ incompetence/ obtuseness, or was it deliberately being sneaky and cagey in Ngapuhi territory because they just couldn't bring themselves to say the word 'sovereignty'?
ROB PATERSON Matapihi

Otago Daily Times 13/2/19
TREATY OF WAITANGI
OUR TV presenters, radio jocks and newspaper journos say Waitangi Day is a celebration of the signing of the Treaty in 1840.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi was signed on February 6, 1840, but the Treaty that Maori celebrate today is the reconstructed and reinterpreted document that now reads of ‘‘principles, partnerships, forestry and fisheries’’ etc. None of these words can be found in Te Tiriti o Waitangi signed by 565 Rangatira.

My question is, how can an innocent document signed 179 years ago between two cultures become, over time (1975 - 2019), such a racially divisive and historically distorted document?
MAUREEN ANDERSON, Tauranga

Dominion Post 13/2/19
CANCER RATES: ADDRESS MAORI’S NON-HEALTH ISSUES
Duncan Garner (Wellbeing Budget nonsense when we’re dying early, Feb 9) is concerned that survival rates for cancer in New Zealand are poor compared with Australia. One of the reasons for the disparity is that Maori, who constitute 15 per cent of our population, die from cancer at 1.5 times the rate of Pakeha.

To improve our cancer survival rates, we may be better to address the economic and cultural issues that face Maori with cancer, rather than hassling Pharmac to provide new expensive drugs for which the effectiveness has not yet been demonstrated.

Disclosure: I’m a Pakeha cancer survivor who has benefited from excellent cancer care in the public system, including access to a number of new drugs.
ALASTAIR SMITH, Aro Valley

NZ Herald 13/2/19 (Also in the Dominion Post 13/2/19)
WAITANGI DAY
I have just spent a week in the Bay of Islands and while there attended part of the Treaty celebrations programme on the Treaty grounds. It certainly was not a New Zealand Day, it was a Them and Us day, a day of protests and divisions. Those who wanted to express a counter view to the general theme were just drowned out by protesters. Freedom of speech was very limited.

Some speakers spoke about issues of concern to the wide New Zealand community, like water and pollution, and were greeted by respect from all. Others paraded around the flagpole and through the crowds, chanting and waving flags clearly designed to be offensive, including the NZ flag upside down and below a Maori-designed flag.

What I found particularly interesting was placards denouncing 1080 as a killer of innocent animals, but none condemning domestic violence and highlighting the number of innocent women, children and men killed each month by it in New Zealand.

Clearly we desperately need a New Zealand Day that allows we Kiwis to celebrate our achievements and the values system that has allowed us to grow into the nation that we are today — a classless society where freedom of speech and association are closely guarded and diversity, tolerance and respect for all, if not perfect, remain our aspiration.
BRIAN MAIN, Hamilton.
Otago Daily Times 12/2/19
TREATY OF WAITANGI
YOUR columnist Civis (ODT, 9.2.19) claims that under the Treaty of Waitangi, ‘‘Articles 2 and 3 together mean Maori do indeed have more rights than other New Zealanders’’.

He lambasts Dr Don Brash for, he claims, ‘‘tediously reiterating on RNZ’s Morning Report that Article 3 of the Treaty of Waitangi means that all New Zealanders have the same rights’’.

Civis explains that Article 3 gives Maori ‘‘the same rights and duties of citizenship as the people of England’’ (Maori language version) as expounded by Dr Brash.

But Civis goes on to claim that ‘‘those rights and duties are additional to the rights guaranteed Maori in Article 2’’ which he explains give Maori ‘‘the full exclusive and undisturbed possession of their Lands and Estates Forests Fisheries and other properties which they may collectively or individually possess so long as it is their wish and desire to retain the same in their possession.’’ (English version.)

Article 2 was clearly stating in 1840 that Maori ownership of land (and other properties) in New Zealand was recognised by the Crown as an inalienable right of Maori, together with the right to part with possession.

As a consequence, some 20 years later, when the Land Registry Act 1860 was enacted and the subsequent Compulsory Registration of Titles Act 1924 was passed, all registered titles to land in New Zealand, including most land owned by Maori, were given guarantee of title by the Crown.

Through these Acts, the same rights of ownership and Crown guarantee of title pertain to European or Maoriowned land. There are no additional rights attaching to Maoriowned land.

How then can Civis claim that under the Treaty of Waitangi ‘‘Articles 2 and 3 together mean Maori do indeed have more rights than other New Zealanders’’?

Some collectively Maoriowned land may be subject to particular Acts of Parliament that restrict rights of possession or disposal which might then result in lesser overall rights for some Maori.
TREVOR CROOT, Dunedin

Otago Daily Times 11/2/19
HERE’S TO A WAITANGI DAY WE CAN ALL TRULY CELEBRATE
YOUR Waitangi Day editorial (ODT, 6.2.19) was excellent. In a nutshell you put it so well — the day should be about the best of us, not about the worst.

I do believe it will happen eventually but we have a lot of growing up to do as a nation before we catch up on the 4th of July or St Patrick’s Day, but we will get there. Interestingly, St Patrick’s Day was celebrated more by Irish migrants than in Ireland itself for many years. Young Kiwis abroad mirror this with Waitangi Day.
Sadly, elsewhere in the paper I read that a call for compulsory teaching of New Zealand’s Maori and colonial history in schools is being met with rejection.

The key to the future is knowing and understanding the past. New Zealanders’ knowledge of their own history is abysmal, and the belief in untruths perpetuated to suit colonial interests is widespread.

History is indeed written by the victors but New Zealand history is very clear to anyone who bothers to look at it with an open mind.

It is a fascinating subject and when we do understand it warts and all we will as a nation be ready to celebrate our national day.
RICHARD O’MAHONY, Northeast Valley


BRASH’S VISIT
DON Brash displayed courage, and conducted himself as a gentleman, at Waitangi, which is more than could be said for the protesters there.

To harangue an invited guest to the point he could no longer deliver the speech he was requested is the height of rudeness in any culture, and a new low even by previous Waitangi Day standards.

Fairminded New Zealanders are also at a loss to understand how wanting equality and one law for all can be interpreted as racism.

Conversely, allocating taxpayerfunded resources based on race rather than need is definitely the epitome of racism.

In spite of the Government spending another $100 million on supporting Maori landowners, protesters said it was still not enough.

Throwing more Government money at the problem is not going to fix it. [Abridged]
MARK MUNRO Port Chalmers

The Press 11/2/19
EVIDENCE OF HISTORY
Michael King wrote: ‘‘Take care. The evidence of history is unanimous on only one point. It shows us that no race or culture is inherently superior or inferior to another; and we all have skeletons in our ancestral closets that represent instances of behaviour of which we cannot be wholly proud by today’s standards of ethics and morality.’’ Is this the lesson our history teachers want our children to learn? If not, what?
JOHN HURLEY, Upper Riccarton

NZ Herald 11/2/19
MAORI BURIALS
Peter Moeahu (Letters, February 10) says the 1964 Cemeteries and Cremations Act “specifically denies Maori the same rights and privileges as fellow citizens”.

In fact the act accords Maori greater rights and privileges, by exempting them from the “control” provisions contained therein. To put it another way, Maori are free to organise and run their traditional burial grounds as they see fit.

It would appear we “fellow citizens” are denied the same rights and privileges as Maori.
MURRAY FITCHETT, Remuera.


BRASH AT WAITANGI
Why did Don Brash, former leader of the National Party, bother attending Waitangi celebrations when he was invited to speak by the event convenor, his speech predictably cut short by interjectors.

Brash has always proved tenacious in presenting his views but yet again has been subject to humiliation by many in attendance. Always unwavering in presenting his case yet hardly requisite for a speech that could be confined to his few simple words, “there should be one law for all”.

The statement is beyond dispute, yet lost to many in attendance who responded with taunts, “there is no room for racism”, a disparaging response which bears no correlation to the message Brash continuously expresses.
P.J. EDMONDSON, Tauranga.

Herald on Sunday 10/2/19
NO PRINCIPLES
That the Prime Minister did not know the articles of the Treaty is not surprising as it appears neither does any other Cabinet minister or member of Parliament, otherwise they would not have allowed its corruption over the past 50 years.

The Prime Minister, acknowledging that she could not quote the articles, said “I know the principles well”. No principles are mentioned anywhere in the document. She is only perpetuating the erroneous inclusion of the fake principles and partnership in the document. The Treaty is not our founding document. Its sole purpose was to enable the chiefs to grant sovereignty to the Queen, in perpetuity, and in doing so New Zealand came under the legal control of the Colony of New South Wales.

Our “founding document’ is Queen Victoria’s Royal Charters/Letters Patent which made us a self-governing colony. This document has been hidden away in archives and conveniently ignored by politicians and Maori Treaty revisionists.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Hawkes Bay Today 9/2/19 (Also published in Waikato Times 9/2/19)
FOUNDING DOCUMENT
That the Prime Minister did not know the articles of the Treaty is not surprising as it appears neither does any other Cabinet minister or Member of Parliament. Otherwise they would not have allowed its corruption over the past 50 years.

The Prime Minister, acknowledging that she could not quote the articles, said “I know the principles well”.

No principles are mentioned anywhere in the document. She is only perpetuating the erroneous inclusion of the fake principles and partnership in the document. The Treaty is not our founding document.

Its sole purpose was to enable the chiefs to grant sovereignty to the Queen, in perpetuity, and in doing so New Zealand came under the legal control of the Colony of New South Wales.

Our “founding document” is Queen Victoria’s Royal Charters/Letters Patent which made us a self-governing colony.

This document has been hidden away in archives and conveniently ignored by politicians and Maori Treaty revisionists.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa


LET’S PADDLE TOGETHER
We have had a most enjoyable couple of hours at Waitangi celebrations. I added two special plants to my collection, ate some yummy food and went for a ride in the colourful waka, an important connection with my Maori heritage as a New Zealand citizen.

There is some controversy linked with the Treaty of Waitangi. This is a document signed well over a century ago by people who did not realise what the implications of what they were doing would be.

Can we not see this now as a commitment to partnership for our health and wellbeing and the sustainability of resources for the future of our unique environment? Our lives are enriched by an appreciation of each other’s cultural heritage and an awareness that, unless we can paddle together, we will not be able to keep this country afloat.
M ROBERTSON Havelock North

Waikato Times 9/2/19
HISTORY AND SEMANTICS
I fully support a return to teaching NZ history in our schools, provided it starts with substantial content about our preMaori history and avoids taking liberty with the term ‘‘indigenous people’’ when referring to Maori.

The Maori people are not: "1. naturally existing in a place or country rather than arriving from another place. 2. existing naturally or having always lived in a place; " (both Cambridge & Collins dictionaries).

Increasing use of the term indigenous within NZ is actually an insult to the Australian Aboriginal people and dilutes their status and authenticity. They did not come to Australia, conquer and cannibalise existing residents as the Maori did in NZ.

Our history started with early Chinese and various European-origin exploration of the southern seas before Maori landed here. It is statistically improbable that people from these very early ships (some still on our shores) did not survive on land and form small colonies.

Maori should face up to the reality that they were just proud conquerors of other peoples, just as the Romans were.

There is no shame in that; just admit it.

Being hell-bent on ramming this pseudo-indigenous fallacy down every New Zealander's throat just erodes their credibility and respect by others.
OWEN JONES, Ohaupo

Dominion Post 9/2/19
TREATY INTERPRETATIONS
Talk of compulsory teaching of the Treaty of Waitangi is worrying because differing opinions are so strongly held and some interpretations are obviously wrong.

Many "historians" twist the wording to say what they want it to say. For example "Treaty Educator" TeHuia Bill Hamilton (The Treaty: how are we doing on our promises to each other, Feb 5), who begins his analysis of Article One: "Rangatira gave the Crown an authority to govern." By 1840 the Crown was already governing and did not need the authority of the rangatira.

He goes on to state "the intention was that rangatira and the Crown would govern in partnership". Where is the evidence that this was the intention? The word "partnership" is not anywhere in the Treaty and does not appear until introduced by activists in the late 20th century.

Read the witness account of the signing by William Colenso and it is clear Maori did not understand the Treaty.

Confusion reigns.

The interpretation of the Treaty that becomes the version acceptable to educationists will probably be that of the strongest lobby group rather than an objective historical summation. [abridged]
DON BOSWELL, Eastbourne


BRASH SPEECH
Don Brash willingly accepts an invitation to speak at Te Tii Marae, although he may have expected a hostile reception at the place where he was once hit in the face with mud by angry protestors.

His address is given amid catcalls and accusations of racism and then the event organisers cut him off midway through his speech to introduce another speaker, who starts off "I used to feel the same way about Maori as Brash".

This new speaker described himself as a "recovering racist, having gone on a journey of challenging the Don Brash within".

On Thursday you published the thoughts of five Maori thinkers, with a sub-heading comment: "never mind Don Brash's views on Maoridom".

Well, it would have been useful to have had the opportunity to understand his views, which may have been possible if he had been permitted to finish his address.

Perhaps you could obtain and publish the transcript of his full speech so that we can make our own judgment.
MICHAEL BOLLAND, Oriental Bay


BUILDING BRIDGES
I am heartened by the words of both Winston Peters and the leader of the Opposition, Simon Bridges, at Waitangi this year.

Peters recognised that "Government can only do so much" (for Maori). "We have got to see in our own selves the seeds of our success - nowhere else."

Bridges agreed with the "clear conception of that speech [Don Brash's 2004 Orewa speech] that we shouldn't be doing things on the basis of race - it should be need."

Perhaps in coming months and years the advantages brought to all in this country by colonisation will be recognised, rather than the present perceived ills.

Perhaps the words of Sir Apirana Ngata may at last be fulfilled: "We are one people. He iwi tahi tatau."
IRENE FAGAN, Island Bay

Dominion Post 9/2/19 (To the point section)
I am all In favour of the teaching of New Zealand history In all our schools as widely as possible. Provided it is all our human history from when Maori first arrived and not just the colonial history as promoted by Myles Ferris (Five Maori thinkers, Feb 8).

The history of Maori pre-1840 makes pretty grim reading at times but that Is what it is. To deny It Is to present a sanitised view of New Zealand's past that does nobody any good.
GRAHAM DICK, Masterton

NZ Herald 9/2/19 (Short & Sweet section)
A correspondent finds “Pakeha” distasteful. To me it is fine no matter what its derivation. It carries the connection I feel with this land.
JUDY LAWRY, Golflands.


A hundred million to develop Ma¯ori land? What's happened to the $1 billion-plus in Treaty settlements?
KARL VAN DE WATER, Maungaturoto.

Otago Daily Times 8/2/19
COMPULSORY HISTORY TEACHING IS A COMPLEX ISSUE
I COMMEND the call from the History Teachers’ Association for the compulsory teaching of New Zealand’s Maori and colonial history in schools (ODT, 6.2.19) but wonder how this can be made possible at secondary school level as long as history remains an optional subject.

The petition to Parliament to pass a law to ‘‘make compulsory the coherent teaching of our own past across appropriate year levels in our schools’’ could only become a reality for all students, as seems to be the intent of this petition, if history was made a compulsory subject, at least at year 11, rather than the current situation where less than 20% of year 11 students opt to take history and even fewer at more senior levels.

Would school hierarchies, or indeed the Ministry of Education, have the courage to make history a compulsory subject, as is the case in a number of countries, given our already ‘‘overcrowded’’ New Zealand curriculum and competing demands from other subjects?

I am intrigued that the Education Ministry early learning and student achievement deputy secretary, Ellen McGregor­Reid, has stated that ‘‘. . . we expect schools and kura to teach Te Tiriti o Waitangi, Maori history and the New Zealand land wars’’ when the only explicit curriculum reference to this at secondary school level is the level 5 social studies achievement objective (‘‘Understand how the Treaty of Waitangi is responded to differently by people in different times and places’’).

Can the ministry be assured that all schools’ social studies programmes are fulfilling this expectation and what is the mechanism for ensuring this?

Moreover, can there be an assurance that our schools’ social studies teachers have the specialist social science background to meaningfully teach the complexities of multiple perspectives around this topic or are some/many schools being forced into the expedient action of putting non­specialist teachers in front of social studies classes due to restrictive staffing formulas?
JOHN DOWNES, Kenmure

Dominion Post 8/2/19
The decision of Waitangi Day organisers to invite Don Brash to speak demonstrates a robustness and generosity of spirit that is absent in many other settings. Compare this to the decision last year of Massey University not to allow him to speak. This shows us how presumptuous and overzealous many self-appointed advocates can be. It is possible that all sorts of difficult issues could be productively discussed if mouthy advocates didn’t get in the way.
GAVAN O’FARRELL, Lower Hutt

NZ Herald 8/2/19
PAKEHA DEFINITION
A letters to the editor a correspondent said that according to his Maori/English dictionary, “Pakeha ” meant “foreigner”. To me, a third generation New Zealander, that is even more distasteful than all other versions of “Pakeha ” that I have heard.
DI MONKLEY, Hamilton.

NZ Herald 8/2/19 (Short & Sweet section)
ON BRIDGES
Simon Bridges reportedly said at Waitangi Maori want autonomy and independence and then said, “Yes, agreed [with one law for all]”. I know politicians are famous for being two-faced, but that takes the cake.
REX BEER, Manly.


ON SHADES
Symbolic difference or common courtesy? Minister Kris Faafoi, during a TV interview at the Nelson conflagration, held his sunglasses in his hand. At Waitangi, self-proclaimed bishop Brian Tamaki wore his sunglasses during a TV interview.
MIKE DONOVAN, Remuera.


ON NAVIGATION
That the Polynesians discovered celestial navigation at sea is a misconception. The first western civilisation to navigate using charts and the position of the sun and the stars were the Phoenicians about 4000 years ago.
GARY HOLLIS, Mellons Bay.

NZ Herald 7/2/19
BRASH SET UP
I read your article about Don Brash at Waitangi with outrage.

I am not a Brash supporter but believe it took courage for him to return.

His reasoning is irrelevant in this case because the real issue is that he was invited by the forum facilitator, Rueben Taipiri.

Rueben did not invite him for freedom of speech, he did so to humiliate him because it was Rueben’s partner and mother of his children who was the protester with the loudspeaker. It was a set up. Shameful.

There is no way forward for a united New Zealand when such open hostility is created by a leader at Waitangi. I think it’s a sad day for Maori.
SARA KENNEDY, Ahipara.


OUR NAME
It seems to have escaped Riro Marett’s notice there are two main official languages in this country, English and Maori. Each has its own place names for the same geographical features.

Aotearoa may or may not be the prehistoric Maori name for the country but it is appropriate that it be the modern Maori name for it.

However, it is not, and nor should it be, the modern English language name.

New Zealand was not named by Tasman. He called it Staaten Land, because he thought it was part of land near South America discovered by a countryman and given that name.

It was subsequently realised the land found by Tasman could not be part of the same land mass, so Tasman’s discovery was renamed New Zealand, and has remained so in every language, including Maori.
JOHN MIHALJEVIC, Te Atatu South.

NZ Herald 7/2/19 (Short & Sweet)
ON TREATY
Interesting that none of our Treaty genuflecting ministers could quote one sentence of our founding document.
GRAHAM STEENSON, Whakatane.


ON PAKEHA
My parents lived in Ruatahuna for three years in the 1930s. My father spoke fluent Maori, even helping the local Maori reverend translate the Bible into Maori. Pakeha was the name given to the mongrel dogs that ran freely around the village.
LYNNE SHAW, Te Awamutu.

NZ Herald 6/2/19
WAITANGI DAY GOLD FOR OUR IDENTITY
Thank goodness we have Waitangi Day in all its messy, muddy, shouting and dildo-throwing glory. Long may we have such a public space to debate who we are rather then some bland “New Zealand” holiday that morphs into the likes of the “Queen’s Birthday”. Waitangi Day looks forward, not backward to a province in the Netherlands. Waitangi Day is pure cultural gold.

For once we step out of our bland, postcolonial rut to hear the likes of Hone Harawira, Don Brash, a Maori housing panel and a debate on 1080, all in the same space. How on earth are we to know who we are as a people without some mud and feathers flying? It holds a priceless opportunity to define ourselves, our culture and the issues that underpin our successes, our failures and our identity.

The show has already begun when the two greatest blowhards, Destiny Church leader Brian Tamaki and MP Shane Jones, eye each other up for some serious mud wrestling. Maybe the Auckland Pride festival should invite Tamaki to ride his Harley topless in it as an act of defining what that particular parade is about as it struggles and collapses.

This year’s biggest Waitangi disappointment is the cowardly and controlling prohibiting of mainstream media from “The People’s Forum” tent. That runs contrary to its very naming.
RUSSELL HOBAN, Ponsonby


‘NEW ZEALAND’ FINE
New Zealand is our name and should remain. Abel Tasman used it referencing Zeeland (Sealand) in the Netherlands on or about 1645. Aoteoroa may or not have any special meaning. There are several explanations for its source, not least that it applied only to the South Island, that it may have been Kupe’s canoe, the “Land of the long white cloud” may well be a somewhat romantic meaning used in colonial times.

In reply to your correspondent, Riro Marett, Zeeland exists as the westernmost province of the Netherlands even now.

There is enough confusion overseas, especially as we render two versions of our anthem during sporting events or other ceremonies.
BRYAN FROST, Morrinsville.


HANDOUTS
It must be great for Jacinda and Shane to trip around the country handing out taxpayer money like it grows on trees. New Zealanders need to stop and think where that money came from and how hard they worked for it.

The average income in New Zealand is around $50,000. This amount attracts $10,000 in tax, which an average Kiwi has worked hard all year to pay. So where did the $100 million for Maori come from? Ten thousand average hardworking New Zealanders, that’s where.
JOHN OLIVER, Remuera.

NZ Herald 6/2/19 (Short & Sweet)
ON TREATY
When asked on TV what Article 1 of the Treaty says, Jacinda Ardern had a vague idea but Kelvin Davis and James Shaw hadn't a clue. One has to wonder about the competence of our leaders.
RICHARD PRINCE, Tauranga.


Why don't you print the Treaty of Waitangi in full so everybody has an easy opportunity to see what this extremely short document actually says?
JEANETTE GRANT, Mt Eden.


ON OFFENCE
If I were Graham Steenson I wouldn't be too concerned about the term Pakeha. In my English-Maori dictionary the word simply means foreigner.
L. H CLEVERLY, Mt Roskill

Dominion Post 6/2/19 (In a few words)
The entitlements given in the Treaty of Waitangi do not apply exclusively to Maori. The Maori version of this document is clear that the provisions apply to ... all the people of New Zealand. Care must be taken to ensure that Maori rights do not infringe on the rights of everybody else.
KENNETH WARD, Woburn

The Press 6/2/19
THINE EAR
Perhaps the opening line in Tuesday’s editorial about Don Brash’s visit to Waitangi "to listen" and that we could all do with talking less and listening more, was inspired by William Shakespeare’s Hamlet?

While researching the abuse of charitable trusts, mainly by certain religious interests in New Zealand in the 1800s, I came across the following quotation above an editorial on the topic in the New Zealand Herald in 1869: "Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice. Take each man’s censure, but reserve thy judgment. This above all – To thine own self be true And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man."

As I well know. Listening but also speaking out to challenge the status quo in New Zealand is a risk indeed, and one pays a price for doing so. It is encouraging then to see that there are some Maori who, like Brash, are prepared to listen.
MICHAEL GOUSMETT, Rangiora

Otago Daily Times 6/2/19
OUR CHOICE TO BE KNOWN AS A NEW ZEALANDER
THE current attempt to get the addition of ‘‘Aotearoa’’ to the official name for New Zealand via a nonbinding referendum seems rather premature when all official documents have, under the ‘‘ethnicity choices’’ column, European (Pakeha).

The only place to write ‘‘New Zealander’’, listed at the bottom of all the choices, is ‘‘Other’’.

In my experience, I found that young people completing enrolling documents for such things as industry training, all, without exception, chose to put ‘‘New Zealander’’ in the ‘‘Other’’ choice box.

Even my local GP wrote ‘‘New Zealander’’ in his annual registration form, only to get it returned changed back to ‘‘European’’.

Surely the first change to make, in this 21st century, is to edit the plethora of bureaucratic documentation and place in the ethnicity choices column (as the first choice) ‘‘New Zealander’’ (heritage).

This will allow my grandchildren, for example, who genetically are 50% Scottish, 25% Irish and 25% Maori, to decide if they are actually New Zealanders, for they certainly are not Europeans, or Scottish, or Irish, or Maori.

The same situation applies to the myriad other genetic combinations that now make up the citizenship of the New Zealand population.

The whole thrust of such documentation seems to be dominated by statisticians obsessed by trying to keep trace of where everyone has come from and forgetting about the relentless ‘‘diverse genetic enrichment’’ resulting in a nationhood of New Zealanders.
STAN RANDLE, Alexandra

Northland Age 5/2/18
GENTLY GENTLY
Re Dominion Post February 2, Petition ‘Should we be Aotearoa?’
Why do we need two names for our country? Who is wanting to change the name of New Zealand and include Aotearoa? In the treaty New Zealand was called Nu-Tirani.

It was Turi, as navigator of the Aotea, who brought the Moriori to New Zealand over 300 years before the Maori. It was the Moriori who used the name Aotea after their craft landed, meaning ‘the dawn’ or ‘Where we have landed’.

About 1890 a couple of European writers used it as a fanciful name for New Zealand.

Aotea is not a Maori name, the reason behind adding Aotearoa to it is that further down the track the words New Zealand will be removed.
IAN BROUGHAM, Wanganui

New Zealand Herald 5/2/19
NORTHLAND GRANT
My understanding is that Treaty settlements were to compensate for past injustices and provide financial resources for development. I question why the regional growth fund should provide loan money to develop Maori land given that settlements have been made. Surely the RGF purpose is to develop regions for the benefit of all, not just Maori, land holders.
RUBIN LEVIN, Devonport.


EQUAL STATUS
Elizabeth Marvelly continues to maintain Maori did not cede sovereignty to the Queen (Parliament).

I have no idea where she gets this information from.

Sir Apirana Ngata, described as New Zealand’s greatest Maori leader, a prominent politician and lawyer, wrote “An explanation — The Treaty of Waitangi” in 1922. He concluded with the words, “The Treaty made the one law for the Maori and Pakeha ”. If you think things are wrong and bad then blame our ancestors who gave away their rights in the days when they were very powerful.”

He also mentions when speaking about the third article to the Treaty, “This article represents the greatest benefit bestowed upon the Maori people by her majesty the Queen. It states that the Maori and Pakeha are equal before the law. That is, they are to share the rights and privileges of all British subjects.” No more and no less.

We cannot move ahead in partnership (that means a partnership of all New Zealand’s different ethnic races) by continuing to look in the rear-vision mirror.
P. C. SEWELL, Campbells Bay.


UNDER TOW
Hec Busby has just received a knighthood for his nautical prowess and building of traditional waka.

In 1992 he sailed to Rarotonga and was accompanied by a support vessel which would have had the benefit of modern navigational technology and communication. They encountered a storm and were towed.

Busby had set out to prove his ancestors could navigate the Pacific and beyond. His ancestors never had the luxury of a support vessel with up to the minute navigation, and they were never towed.
DAVE MILLER, Rotorua.

Dominion Post 4/2/19
TREATY DOCUMENTS
Yet another alleged translation of the so-called ‘‘Treaty of Waitangi’’ (Treaty translation ‘labour of love’, Jan 28) . Nothing that any scribe today, saturated in modern supposed meanings of te reo, might write could possibly be superior to the official translation of 1869 by TE Young of the Native Department.

Even better than that is Hobson’s final draft of February 4, 1840, dubbed the ‘‘Littlewood Treaty’’ by officialdom and declared of no importance by the propagandists of the ‘‘Treaty-2-U’’ caravan because ‘‘it wasn’t signed’’.

Of course drafts are not normally signed and while it may have no importance as a legal document, it is of critical importance historically.

Because it upsets their theories and exposes the illegitimacy of much official policy, officialdom does not want to know about it.

Instead, we are required to accept James Freeman’s fake ‘‘Treaty in English’’, the second page of the document signed at Waikato Heads for an overflow of signatures. One wonders what effect this new ‘‘labour of love’’ will have on that perversion of the truth?

Wake up New Zealand. If you do not have a teaspoonful of Maori blood, you will soon become second-class citizens. The choice is yours. [abridged]
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei

Bay of Plenty Times 4/2/19
MAORI PLACE NAMES
Greerton Shame on all our local authorities who are so insistent on Maori names for parks (for example: Phoenix park), libraries, streets and the polytech.

The very least you could do is put the English name up as well. If confusion is what you are trying to achieve, you are doing a great job.

The toilets in Bayfair are just as bad, how would any tourist know what “tane” and “hine” meant?

Just give us a break.

Maori are 14 per cent of the population and, whether you like it or not, the English language is the universal language.

To save on mass confusion have the decency to at least put both languages up.

The Katikati library is the same. You wouldn’t know it’s a library, in my opinion — no sign, just some longwinded Maori name.

It is amazing how many people have to ask where the library is.

Placing all these signs in just Maori names is, in my opinion, dumb and arrogant. (Abridged)
C HUMPHREYS, Katikati

Hawkes Bay Today 4/2/19
TIME TO RESET AND CELEBRATE NEW ZEALAND DAY
Waitangi Day celebrations will soon be disrupted once again by the circus of dysfunctional and disaffected. It should be a joyous day, celebrating an amazingly enlightened Treaty for its time with its citizen equality and property rights. Its commitment to law and order saw the end of tribal warfare and the development of a peaceful and pleasant democracy.

I cannot understand the foolishness of those determined to ruin the day. They reinterpret history, and promote lies, resentment, feudalism and separatism. Celebrating culture is to be encouraged, but instilling apartheid ideology is destructive and dangerous. The only winners are the greedy and selfish tribal mafia.

We just have to look around our homes, sports and workplaces to see that most of us are definitely united as New Zealanders. We cannot take the Maori out of the Pakeha, no more than we can take the Pakeha out of the Maori. We are one despite the usual familial quirks.

A national day reset is the solution. Let’s celebrate ‘New Zealand Day’, which is what most are already doing informally on 6th February anyway. Away from the political limelight, we are just Kiwis wanting to share good times with friends, family and our communities.
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei

Wanganui Chronicle 4/2/19
WHAT DO READERS THINK?
H. Norton’s letter claiming that I am “wrong” ( Chronicle January 19) is such a falsehood. I point out that my letter addressed two claims being .”. . . the land was never put up for sale “and “the Government of the time had literally stolen Mangapapa”. I provided evidence and links supporting the facts that Mangapapa had been voluntarily offered and subsequently sold to the Crown for an agreed price.

H. Norton proffered no reasons to refute my evidence, instead commenting in general terms upon the laws of the day affecting the sale of Maori land “like Mangapapa” . . . but note, not specifically Mangapapa. He admits these sales were legal and claims they would not be so today.

We all know the law, society’s views and land valuations change over the years, but that is not an adequate cause to revisit a voluntary sale and agreed payment made over 100 years ago and to demand the return of the land along with compensation. Were it so, then I and thousands of other New Zealanders would be entitled to revisit the sale of land sold by our forebears and demand the return of that land along with compensation.

I conclude by repeating that the owners of the land were not forced to sell Mangapapa, nor had it “stolen” from them, instead they asked the Crown to buy it and had negotiated an agreed sale price.

H. Norton says I am wrong, but I believe that the editorial epithet, “land stolen legally” is a suitable oxymoron for his letter, but what, dear readers do you believe?
V W BALLANCE, Westmere

Herald on Sunday 3/2/19
WAITANGI DISRUPTIONS PROMOTE RESENTMENT AND FEUDALISM
Waitangi Day celebrations will soon be disrupted once again by the circus of dysfunctional and disaffected. It should be a joyous day, celebrating an amazingly enlightened treaty for its time with its citizen equality and property rights. Its commitment to law and order saw the end of tribal warfare and the development of a peaceful and pleasant democracy.

I cannot understand the foolishness of those determined to ruin the day. They reinterpret history, and promote lies, resentment, feudalism and separatism.

Celebrating culture is to be encouraged. Instilling apartheid ideology is destructive and dangerous.

The only winners are the greedy and selfish tribal mafia.

We just have to look around our homes, sports and workplaces to see that most of us are definitely united as New Zealanders. We cannot take the Maori out of the Pakeha, no more than we can take the Pakeha out of the Maori. We are one despite the usual familial quirks.

A national day reset is the solution. Let’s celebrate “New Zealand Day”, which is what most are already doing informally on February 6 anyway.

Away from the political limelight, we are just Kiwis wanting to share good times with friends, family and our communities.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo

Sunday Star Times 3/2/19
DIVISIVE CLAIMS
Hinemoa Elder wants to weed out those ‘colonial lies’ (Focus, January 27).

There are many lies touted by today’s activist Maori and their European sycophants which urgently need weeding.

Such as, “the chiefs never ceded sovereignty”, yet Article one of the Treaty of Waitangi that the majority of chiefs signed clearly states ceding of sovereignty.

Then there is the creative lie that there is a “Crown/Maori partnership”; there is nothing written in the true Maori language ToW that remotely implies a “partnership”.

‘Land stolen’ is another common myth, the chiefs sold 24.13 million hectares of New Zealand’s 26.8-million hectares, only 2.3% of New Zealand remained legally confiscated as a consequence of the 1860s tribal rebellions, after 1928.

I could go on.... but these divisive lies must be consigned to the bin in order for our nation to unite as one.
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei

Dominion Post 2/2/19
MINORITY PREVAILS
A couple of years ago a walking track was cut across private land on the side of Te Mata Peak in Hawke's Bay. The local iwi raised objections on cultural grounds. Local council and the landowners agreed to attempt to obliterate the track.

Recently a meat company used an image of Te Mata Peak to promote its product. Again the local iwi objected and the advertisement was cancelled.

Right or wrong, it is generally accepted that Maori make up 16 per cent of the New Zealand population.

Why is it that, in every case, be it naming islands, mountains, realigning roads or welcoming guests to our country, the culture and values of 16 per cent always overrule the culture and values of the other 84 per cent?
REG FOWLES, Walkanae

Weekend Sun / Sunlive 1/2/19 

CORRECT TERMINOLOGY
I wonder what P. Dey’s definition of ‘indigenous’ is (The Weekend Sun, January 25)?

David Round, a Canterbury law lecturer, writes: “The Oxford English Dictionary tells us that someone or something indigenous is ’born or produced naturally in a land or region; native to that soil, region. According to the dictionaries, those are the only two things this English word can mean; being born somewhere, or, having ancestors who have been there forever.”

Therefore in the former sense, all New Zealanders born here are indigenous, not just Maoris.

And in the latter sense, even Dey admits in the letter that Maoris arrived here from somewhere else around 1250AD.

Hence, ‘so-called indigenous’ seems to be the correct terminology to me?
G PARKER, Whangarei.


A HEARTBEAT IN HUMAN EVOLUTION
P. Dey is quite incorrect to claim that Maori are indigenous to New Zealand. All his quoted evidence only confirms when Maori arrived and nothing else.

He is sadly and badly misinformed. Maori are not indigenous, certainly according to various dictionary definitions, for example from Collins: “Indigenous people or things belong to the country in which they are found, rather than coming there or being brought there from another country.”

Maori are not indigenous to New Zealand because they migrated here from several Pacific islands, clearly confirmed by their own history.

By their own tradition, the spirits of Maori when they die return to Hawaiki, their original homeland, leaving from Cape Reinga. Hardly credible for a claim to being indigenous.

Aborigines in Australia are indigenous, as are the bushmen of South Africa, as are native Americans, having lived in their countries for many thousands of years.

Yes, Maori were the first migrants to settle here in numbers, although others were already here, possibly Moriori. The fact remains that as a people Maori are migrants, like all of us who have settled here. Yes, Maori arrived before others by several centuries - a mere heartbeat in the history of human evolution.
P HICKLING, Papamoa Beach.


UNDISPUTED SINCE 1840
P. Dey states that carbon dating proves that no settlement preceded the arrival of the first fleet.

This may be correct in the small area carbon dated, but over 500 chiefs representing about 75,000 of their people from all over the country acknowledged and accepted they were tangata Maori, and not tangata whenua or the indigenous people of New Zealand when they signed the Tiriti o Waitangi.

This must be more reliable than carbon dating from one small area.

While there was five hours of debate on the Tiriti o Waitangi on the February 5, 1840, there was no mention made that the chiefs and their people were not tangata Maori.

While just about everything about the Tiriti has been disputed, this has never been disputed since the Tiriti o Waitangi was signed in 1840.
R BAKER, Palmerston North.

Northland Age 31/1/19
LOGIC DEFIED
To suggest, as has P Dey, of Welcome Bay, in the Weekend Sun, that carbon dating proves that no settlement preceded the arrival of the First Fleet beggars description.

It is foolish to conclude by carbon dating that the small, well known areas of the coast where Maori settled would be the same for the entire 268,000 square kilometres of land and 15000km of coastline of New Zealand. To suggest that not finding evidence of other habitation in areas that they did not investigate proves that Maori are the indigenous race defies logic and lacks scientific validity.

Maori themselves accepted that there were inhabitants already present at the arrival of the first canoes. Ngapuhi leader David Rankin stated, “If we believe our histories then we as Maori are not the indigenous people of New Zealand.”
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa


BIASED HISTORIANS
There are lies, damned lies and biased historians.

In 2016, the Weekend Herald presented the first media report on the opposing version of the Rangioawhia action. Until now all media, including The Listener and the Herald, have chosen to report only the rebel Kingite’s oral version of the engagement, presented by Vincent O’Malley. In doing so O’Malley has perverted his professional integrity as a historian by lacking objectivity. Unfortunately the media has chosen only to present the more sensational version vilifying the colonial government.

Nowhere has it been reported that the Kingites were condemned by the hundred chiefs at the Kohimarama Conference in 1860, or that the government’s actions were approved by Sir Apirana Ngata.

There is no mention of the many tribes who supported the government. including even some of the Waikato Maori. Hokianga rangatira Moetara said, "Oh Governor be strong, strike the fire that is raging. Strike, extinguish, trample." Tamati Waka Nene said that the Ngapuhi were ready to come to the government's aid. These tribes were disparagingly called Queenites by the rebels.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff announced that he was willing to listen to "the other side of the story," but has shown no evidence of doing so. The problem is that by criticising the media this letter will not be published. It is time for media impartiality.
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa
Northern Advocate 30/1/19
TOO ROSY A PICTURE OF MAORI CULTURE
Marie Kaire paints a rosy picture of Maori culture (Letters January 19). But the fact is pre-European Maori culture included cannibalism, tribal warfare, slavery and female infanticide. These hunter gatherer people were responsible for the extinction of the Moa and approximately thirty other bird species, apparently many seal colonies around the coast were wiped out. Somewhere between a third and a half of New Zealand’s original forest cover was destroyed by these ‘original conservationists’.

She maintains they are the richest in cultural beliefs and still practice their pre-European belief in conservation today, if so heaven help us.

Seafood stocks, resource usage and pollution are under pressure but we now have 4.8 million people in New Zealand not the relatively miniscule 150,000 (approx) of the 18th century.

Maori arrived here from elsewhere approx five hundred years before Europeans, and apparently when they die their spirits leave for Hawaiki from Cape Reinga – so are they really indigenous as Ms Kaire asserts?

Lastly, she opines Maori are rich in language – and so they should be as this costs the ‘greedy commercialising’ NZ taxpayer around $600 million per year.
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei

Northland Age 29/1/19
A HATCHET JOB
As a nation, we really are in trouble with the Minister of Treaty Negotiations Minister, Andrew Little, singing the ‘Colonial Oppression’ song to a United Nations controlled by a majority of post-colonial nations out to avenge perceived past colonial injustices.

Music to the ears of the Marxist Left and further denigration of Western democracies. His biased, historically warped, cringing apologia demeans our nation and the grand achievements of our forebears.

The ‘entrenched racism’ he mentions is obvious to all, with successive governments favouring Maori exclusively with special privileges granted to none of the other 230 ethnicities. Who else has a Waitangi Tribunal or a political party, 21 radio and two television stations supplied by the taxpayer, special quotas for entrance into educational and academic facilities, millions spent promoting te reo?
Mr Little, Maori ceased to exist as a separate race through breeding with the immigrants. Most of their 15 per cent of our population have more migrant than Maori blood in their veins. We are now all New Zealanders, equal subjects under the Treaty.

The failure in solving Maoris’ many problems is because of patronising governments requiring no responsibility or accountability, and the reluctance of iwi hierarchy to address the problems or commit any of their $50 billion Treaty settlements capital to doing so.

Apparently the high prison population is not because of the criminals’ activities, but because of the failure of the state and citizens to prevent them.

All in all, Mr Little has done a pretty good hatchet job on our international reputation.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa


STATE RELIGION
Your edition of January 15 reports that a government minister and NZTA representatives attended the blessing of a recently constructed road roundabout at Waipapa. Although not specifically ruled out, I harbour substantial doubt that the blessing was performed by the local Catholic priest. Would it be reasonable for me to assume that, in our enlightened times, Maori animism has been accorded the status of being our state religion?
LEO LEITCH, Benneydale


KILLING INNOCENTS
Bruce Moon’s expose (Justice denied, letters, Northland Age, January 10) is a very good account on the absurdity that surrounds the current Chatham islands proposals.

To recap, in 1835 Taranaki Maori tribes took the trader Rodney and sailed to the Chathams, some 700km away, seemingly for no good reason other than they thought the grass was greener there and it would be easy pickings. The peaceful, non-violent Moriori who occupied Chatham and Pitt islands lived by a code of non-violence, no warfare, no cannibalism, known as the law of nunuku.

The Maori butchers, intent on extermination, slaughtered them, even women and children, in their hundreds, then enslaved and subjugated the rest.

Today the term to describe this outrage is genocide perpetrated against defenceless people, and by 1863 only about 100 of an estimated original 2000 full-blooded Moriori survived.

Maori have admitted this atrocity, and justified it solely on the basis of custom and conquest, so the facts are well-settled, and what happened is not in dispute at all.
As Mr Moon indicates, we should not be confirming any possession of the Chatham Islands to Maori interests, nor compensating or apologising to anyone or anything for what happened there.

In 1835 the British did not have sovereignty, nor legal control, over what occurred in New Zealand, and that is the short and sweet of it all.

It is inconceivable that we as Kiwis would even contemplate rewarding the descendants of murderers and villains.
ROB PATERSON Mt Maunganui

Sydney Herald 26/1/19
NZ LEADS THE WAY
Having just returned from the Bay of Islands in New Zealand and visiting the Waitangi Treaty grounds, I couldn't help but reflect on the huge differences between the assimilation of Maoris and Aborigines into their respective countries.

While both countries' national day is a source of controversy and tension, there the resemblance ends. All throughout our travels I was struck by the acceptance and integration of Maoris into the New Zealand way of life. In the NZ parliament there are 29 Maori members out of a total 120 and the party leaders or deputy leaders are Maori except for one.

Treaty settlements have ensured large sums of money have been used to generate significant wealth resulting in considerable economic and political and cultural integration of the Maori population. We need to look to our eastern neighbour to learn from what is probably the best example in the world of mixed race relationships. -
ELIZABETH MAHER, Bangor

NZ Herald 26/1/19
DEFACING RANGITOTO
Where are the howIs of protest over the proposed zip line to the top of Rangitoto?
Surety such a structure will take away from the natural beauty and cause destruction to natural features during its construction?

I hope all the people who created such a fuss over the walking track on Te Mata in Hawke's Bay will create a similar fuss about the possible defacing of Rangitoto.
JOCK MACVICAR, Hauraki.


If I claim Ngati Tipperary Iwi as my whakapapa. will the Government assist me to lay claim to an offshore Ireland?
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Otago Daily Times 26/1/19
LET MAORI AND PAKEHA JOIN TOGETHER TO CELEBRATE OUR NATIONAL DAY
WAITANGI Day celebrations will soon be disrupted once again by the circus of the dysfunctional and disaffected.

It should be a joyous day, celebrating an amazingly enlightened treaty for its time with its citizen equality and property rights.

Its commitment to law and order saw the end of tribal warfare and the development of a peaceful and pleasant democracy.

I cannot understand the foolishness of those determined to ruin the day.

They reinterpret history, and promote lies, resentment, feudalism and separatism.
Celebrating culture is to be encouraged, but instilling apartheid ideology is destructive and dangerous. The only winners are the greedy and selfish tribal mafia.

We just have to look around our homes, sports and workplaces to see that most of us are definitely united as New Zealanders.

We cannot take the Maori out of the Pakeha, no more than we can take the Pakeha out of the Maori. We are one despite the usual familial quirks.

A national day reset is the solution. Let’s celebrate ‘‘New Zealand Day’’, which is what most are already doing informally on February 6 anyway.

Away from the political limelight, we are just Kiwis wanting to share good times with friends, family and our communities.
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei

The Press 25/1/19
TURANGA NAMING
Negative liberalism means letting people do what they want as long as it doesn't infringe on the rights of others. Positive liberalism is collective and assumes goals are good for society as a whole.
If you don't like the cultural overlay of Turanga, it is like being forced to like Marmite.
Of course it doesn't matter if they/ we are "the few", as Steve Thomas (Jan 24) claims.
In which case a group of elites got it right.
However, when institutions and government bodies engage in positive liberalism and punish "deviants" they impinge on rights, such as those who value community over cosmopolitanism.
JOHN HURLEY, Upper Riccarton

Northland Age 24/1/19
SHARING GOOD TIMES
Waitangi Day celebrations will soon be disrupted once again by the circus of the dysfunctional and disaffected. It should be a joyous day, celebrating an amazingly enlightened treaty for its time with its citizen equality and property rights. Its commitment to law and order saw the end of tribal warfare and the development of a peaceful and pleasant democracy.

I cannot understand the foolishness of those determined to ruin the day. They reinterpret history, and promote lies, resentment, feudalism and separatism. Celebrating culture is to be encouraged, but instilling apartheid ideology is destructive and dangerous. The only winners are the greedy and selfish tribal mafia

We just have to look around our homes, sports and workplaces to see that most of us are definitely united as New Zealanders. We cannot take the Maori out of the Pakeha, no more than we can take the Pakeha out of the Maori. We are one, despite the usual familial quirks.

A national day reset is the solution. Let's celebrate New Zealand Day, which is what most are already doing informally on February 6 anyway. Away from the political limelight, we are just Kiwis wanting to share good times with friends, family and our communities.
GEOFF PARKER Kamo


NO NEWS
It astounds me that for many years TVNZ have continued, and got away with, the inexplicable policy of no morning news over the Christmas/New Year period and this time from December 21 until Monday, January 21 (one month) no service is provided.

The problem is not the loss of the inane Breakfast Show, it is lack of any morning national /world TV news coverage whatsoever.

If TVNZ’s overpaid, often underperforming newsreaders need a break for a month, so be it, but that is not the viewers’ problem. All that is required by the public are competent aspiring news readers appearing at 8am and 8.30am to read the news, collate sports results and summarise the day’s weather — total time 15 minutes each slot.

Incidentally, this service should be available seven days a week, not five days.

I for one am not interested in the usual fatuous excuses trotted out — we are not yet a third-world country, and viewers, who pour millions of dollars annually into propping up TVNZ, deserve a regular and better morning news service over the Christmas/New Year break.

An assurance is sought that TVNZ and the Minister of Broadcasting will address this aberration.

After all, part-Maori TV (another taxpayer money pit) have Te Kaea news each morning 365 days per year, albeit it is of little use to most Kiwis.
ROB PATERSON, Mt Maunganui

Northern Advocate 24/1/19
ONE WORD
I have one word in reply to Marie Kaire's letter, dated January 19. "Moa".
ANNE LEWIN, Maungatapere

Taranaki Daily News 24/1/19
WHERE WILL THEY GO?
Regarding the return of the Taranaki Maori taonga to the Puke Ariki Museum in New Plymouth

After visiting the Puke Ariki Museum last year, which was an amazing and interesting exercise, I was taken aback when invited down into the basement. It was packed with items in storage because there was no display space.

I agree with the return of local taonga items but also the other Taranaki historical items, yet I ask the question to Peter Moeahu and the local Taranaki Maori iwi, that the Puke Ariki Museum is big enough and has the space to store or display these extra items.

Who is going to pay for the cost of the return of these items, storage and/or display them? It is easy to say return them but in your recent article Peter Moeahu gave no comment of the costs or the extra space required.
IAN MCALPINE, Inglewood

Gisborne Herald 22/1/19
MISTAKE TO RELY ON TRIBUNAL
Your editorial of January 16 criticising the articles by Mike Butler and myself makes the grave mistake of relying on the opinions of the Waitangi Tribunal about Te Kooti’s rebellion in 1868.

There is little resemblance in the proceedings of that tribunal to anything “court-like” as you claim. As veteran newspaperman Brian Priestley, who attended the Ngai Tahu proceedings, said: “There was no cross examination. Witnesses were treated with sympathetic deference . . . . It would be hard to imagine any public body less well organised to get at the truth.”

A lengthy examination of its findings in the Ngai Tahu case by Alan Everton describes its findings as a “fraud” and a “swindle”.

Around 90 percent of land sales were by eager tribal sellers, some selling the same land more than once. Confiscations amounted to only a few percent. They were “tikanga” and the rebels were warned that they would occur to pay in part for the cost of suppressing their rebellions.

And I did not “suggest”, as you state, that “we should be thankful that they (i.e. colonial troops) provided a ‘solid foundation’ for our nation”. I said that “our settlers from Britain” did so and that is the truth.
BRUCE MOON, Nelson


BEGS THE QUESTION
It seems the derogatory term “honky” is acceptable to our esteemed editor . . . which begs the question, is it’s counterpart also now available for use?
A. ABBOTT

Weekend Sun / Sunlive 18/1/19
ODE TO MIDDLE CLASS KIWIS
The middle class - the invisible third of New Zealand who are groaning under the weight and working all the hours God sends to fund everything in this country,

But no worries, we can still pay more says this coalition government.

A government who has signed the ‘Global Migration’ pact to say ‘please bring in every dead beat and car bomber from around the world - our middle class will fund all until retirement!’

Give them all our free healthcare and pensions. Many baby boomers (and parents) who built and funded NZ’s infrastructure and the ‘think big projects’ are now refused their entitlement - the fruits of their labour. Just give to all and sundry, but just not the people who worked for it!

Mr Cullen [from Labour class of 84] is away dreaming up more ways to tax we middle class. It seems it’s possible to keep sucking blood out of a stone just for our government to squander it.

Our so-called indigenous people think we owe them everything, so it’s the middle-class Kiwi again who must pay all. Not the people from 170 odd years ago.

Tax? The wealthy and Maori are exempt, along with Asians and Indians who run their cash society so don’t pay tax. The public servants get their big wage rises, but not the working middle class who work for a pittance!

You can only keep sucking blood out of the stone for so long, because in the end the middle class become the poor. Then who funds all?
C HUMPHREYS, Katikati.

Rotorua Daily Post 18/1/19
NO RECOLLECTIONS OF STRAPPINGS
A letter on January 1 referred to children being caned or strapped for speaking Maori at school and being forced to speak English.

I do not recall any strapping happening during the time that I was at school and I am nearly 100. I attended a number of country schools during my childhood and this is where one would expect to see this happen, if ever. Corporal punishment ceased in New Zealand schools in 1987.

What I did see when visiting my Maori mates during my school years was a couple of Maori mothers say quite forcefully to their children, “Do not speak Maori here, English is the future for you”.

Those days Maori and Pakeha were friendly to each other, but over the past 25 or so years one sees that some people are working hard to drive a wedge between the races. Let us hope that they never succeed.
JOHN SMALE, Ngongotaha


MORE VIRTUE SIGNALLING
I was not surprised to read the letter from Tuehu Harris, the acting chief executive of the Maori Language Commission, promoting that to learn te reo you must speak it every day (Letters, January 12).

Other letters this last week supporting te reo at our local library have really struck me as virtue signalling — that is, nice to promote, but in reality totally impractical.
Just imagine if commerce in our city, and our country, was carried out in te reo.

Sure, te reo has a role today in a place like Rotorua to promote our unique cultural difference, plus of course for those people who wish to learn and speak it.
But to have it rammed down your throat at our public library as A. N. Christie experienced is a step too far, in my view.

This example is just the tip of the iceberg here in Rotorua, as there is no doubt in my mind that our council in the past five years has promoted the Maori view more so than any other council in New Zealand.
MIKE McVICKER, Rotorua

Dominion Post 17/1/19
CHATHAMS WARNING
The Chatham Islands is a microcosm of the worldwide practices of hunter-gatherer, tribal societies, developed from time Immemorial (Divided tribe, Jan 12). The rise of powerful flgures and families also is obvious within and between Maori tribes on mainland New Zealand.

Common to tribal societies with oral languages is a belief in the great works of their ancestors. These basic philosophies arise from the need to protect territory and thus access to food resources.

The intrusion of the people of European societies into tribal lands has brought knowledge. food, materials and the laws of democratic behaviour and governance. Not only have the tribal ways been superseded, but the preservation of tribal culture has become dependent on the availability of the new ways.

Chatham Islands society provides a sober warning of the inadequacies of tribalism.
MIKE WILLIAMS, Tawa

Northern Advocate 17/1/19
FISHING RIGHTS AND WRONGS
Marae KaIre's letter of 22/12/18 clearly states "Maori fishing rights" in Inshore bays and gulfs, her letter of 2/1/19 concedes there may be none, I will leave it to readers to decide if the former letter was mischievous or not.

A Marae trustee chairperson is authorised to issue permits to gather protected seafood for funerals or those terminally ill etc, however the recipients of these seafoods are not confined to race, so again this is not a 'Maori fishing right'.

Her opinion that most people of Maori descent wish to protect our fisheries is commendable, however It Is my opinion that most New Zealanders do so as well.

There seems to be a common condescending and indeed racist believe that maori somehow are natural conservationists, however there is no gene for conservation.

I don't know who the"we" are in Marie's letter of 2/1/19 who impel over-zealous seafood gatherers to return excessive shellfish to the beds, I hope that “we” are authorised officers and not a vigilante group? If It is the latter, this is a foreboding example of what could happen to curb even legit fishers should tribal claims to our beaches be successful
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei

Wanganui Chronicle 12/1/19
POLES APART
I read with great interest Dr Danny Keenan's opinion piece (January 4,19) titled. "A pledge that never was?" and Dr Don Brash's well-researched reply (January 6) titled: One people just reality of Treaty".

Both centre around whether or not the phrase "He iwi tahi tatou" ("We are now one people") was said at the Treaty signing in 1840, or whether it was dreamed up 50 years later by one William Colenso.

It is clear, a least in my eyes, that these pieces were written by two well educated gentlemen, but their views around how Maori/non-Maori relations came to be in their current state are poles apart, and leave me wondering if the ongoing disharmony between Maori and non-Maori will ever be resolved.

History would certainly suggest that had European settlers not arrived when they did, Maori would likely have come very close to wiping themselves out, such was the savagery of the inter tribal wars at the time.

Yes, there were skirmishes between British troops and pockets of Maori after the arrival of European settlers, but these were minor in comparison.

Dr Keenan and others spend a lot of time blaming the current state of Maoridom on the rights or wrongs of the Treaty signed 179 years ago, and hew Maori were conned out of their heritage in the process - some of which is indeed, true.

This government and the government beforehand are addressing this with massive payouts and symbolic return of lands.

A question I have often asked is: Why is it that despite the many millions of taxpayer dollars in settlement paid to numerous iwi over the years, that many members of those same iwi are still over-represented in our unemployment figures, our imprisonment numbers, our health spending, the number of people living in poverty, living in over-crowded houses and cars?

At the same time, those who fight for and win the payouts appear to live very well
This inequality between the haves and the have-nots within Maoridom leaves me wondering if we, as New Zealanders, will ever be "one people".
ROD ANDERSON Castlecliff


EQUAL RIGHTS
Re: Dr Danny Keenan's article in the Wanganui Chronicle (January 4).

Whether Governor William Robson said "He iwi tahi tatou” ("We are now one people") as each chief signed theTreaty of Waitangi on Februan 6, 1840, at Waitangi with a handshake from Hobson is immaterial.

The Treaty made tangata Maori British subjects if they gave up their kawanatanga/governments to the Queen. Article I.

Once the Treaty of Waitangi Was signed by over 500 chiefs, about 75.000 tangata Maori became one people under one flag and one law with the British subjects living in New Zealand. They were given the "same rights as the people of England" (or "We are now one people"). Article 3.

Article 2 explained to tangata Maori they would be guaranteed their land, their settlements and all their property — the same as all the people of England.

This is English law and neither Hobson nor Queen Victoria had the power or authority to give tangata Maori any special rights in the Treaty not enjoyed by all the people living in New Zealand and none were given.

Interesting to note, the Treaty a Waitangi was ruled "A simple nullity" by Chief Justice Sir James Prendergast in 1877 and “if it was not in our legislation, the Treaty of Waitangi was not legally binding" by the Privy Council in 1941.

Both these rulings have never been overruled but have been completely ignored by our historians, the government and the Waitangi Tribunal.
ROSS BAKER One New Zealand Foundation

Rotorua Daily Post 11/1/19
WEDGE BETWEEN RACES
Letters to the editor January 8 refered to children being caned or strapped for speaking Maori at school, and being forced to speak English. Is this convenient history.

I do not recall any strapping happening during the time that I was at school and I am nearly 100 years old. I attended a number of country schools during my childhood and this is where one would expect to see this happen, if ever. Corporal punishment ceased in New Zealand schools in 1987.

What I did see when visiting my Maori mates during my school years was a couple of Maori mothers say quite forcefully to their children. “Do not speak Maori here English is the future for you.”

Those days Maori and Caucasian people were friendly to each other, but over the past 25 or so years one sees that some people are working hard to drive a wedge between the races. Let us hope that they never succeed.
JOHN SMALE, Rotorua

Wanganui Chronicle 11/1/19
EARLY HISTORY
Phillip Thomson (letter. December 21) knows his history. He is right in everything he has written when he says there were people here before the Maori

This leaked document that Phillip has mentioned is the sale of Wanganui. which the Maori chiefs sold to the Europeans. No wonder this document was supposed to be in secret. The block sold contained 80,000 acres.

Maori never owned land as they only occupied it until other tribes invaded and took it off them.

In Wanganui, in May1840, Edward Jemingham Wakefield purchased 40,000 acres of land on the banks of the lower Wanganui River from 27 chiefs.

The natives believed in the existence of other beings who lived in communities and built pas; these people were called Patupaiarehe. Maori originally took the land off the earlier inhabitants.
IAN BROUGHAM Tawhero

Northland Age 10/1/19
JUSTICE DENIED
We learn that a Taranaki tribe, fighting to keep possession of Moriori land, is calling its victims “conquered and subjugated,” as well it might. Nevertheless, it does no harm to look at the process by which this occurred.

It is carefully related by the late Michael King in Moriori: A people rediscovered, (Viking, 1989) and may be described accurately as one of the most extreme examples of genocide in recorded history.

Ritual cannibalism on an overwhelming scale with brutal enslavement of the few survivors make it a holocaust on a level with anything perpetrated by Nazi Germany. That it was perpetrated on a people who truly practised peace and pacifism make its mockery by subsequent Taranaki tribesmen in their nasty cult at Parihaka into what must be one of the bitterest ironies of all times.

As King reports (p.66): “For the Maori participants ... this ... was simply tikanga . ... As Rakatau noted with some satisfaction in the Native Land Court in 1879, 'We took possession ... Not one escaped ... it was in accordance with our custom"'.

King continues: "It was nothing more nor less than Ngati Mutunga and Ngati Tama would have expected ... had they themselves been defeated in combat. What was DIFFERENT (Kings emphasis), however, was that ... the adversaries were NOT (King's emphasis again) Maori. The Moriori were subject to a different customary law." It was an invasion of another country.

Many times since have the Moriori remnant unsuccessfully sought justice, recognition and restoration of their customary rights in their former island home. It would be yet another cruel irony if again they were to be dismissed and the Taranaki tribes confirmed in their possession of those lands they took with such almost unimaginable cruelty.

Those Taranaki tribes, not taxpayers, should pay reparations for their sins.
BRUCE MOON Nelson


LESS FROM LITTLE
When he tackles world social media about breaching New Zealand suppression orders in the Grace Millane case, does Justice and Treaty Negotiations Minister Andrew Little know what’s what? Well at least the district court judge got it right when refusing name suppression, but then the accused attracted most of the publicity himself by appealing that decision, which will simply delay the inevitable until late January.

Really, it makes little difference whether the accused’s name is published now or later, and it’s absurd to suggest that his right to justice has been prejudiced in any way.

Little has already shown by his recent farcical offenders-only Justice Forum (victims input excluded), attended by 600 malcontents costing $1.5 million (twice the budgeted cost) that he has scant regard for what the public think. Then of course he just splurged another $9 million, along with the obligatory fawning political apology, on the Pirihaka Maori nonsense, in my view based on mistruths and a creative rewrite of history, notwithstanding Kiwis (the irrelevant majority) are heartily sick of this stuff too.

Likewise Little has little public support for the Pike River re-entry plan, costing $36/40 million, which simply rewards consultants and contractors, with the likely outcome achieving nothing. To be fair, Little is just the willing messenger because this lunacy was of course NZ First/Labour/Greens policy.

The pressing question is, do nontransparent unaccountable leftists and socialists displaying their usual ignorance/arrogance while ignoring reality ever get it right? Frankly, to be honest, the duplicitous National Party are currently no better.
ROB PATERSON, Matapihi


THE RACIST BLUES
There are racists in my country and I don’t know what to do,
I’m so sad at not being equal, I am feeling rather blue.

They say they are entitled to a bigger vote than me,
Cos they had an ancestor come from Hawaiki.

We’re in the same family, sports and workplace too,
But they say they are superior, and want to mount a coup.

They are taking over gov’ment, hospitals, and schools,
Scaring away the talent and changing all the rules.

Doctors, nurses, teachers too, don’t need to have good sense,
As long as they achieve in Maori cultural competence.

The kids no longer know their sums, or learn to read and write,
But they’re very good recounting the propaganda tripe.

History has been rewritten, the truth now removed,
Some shady lies and myths are all that are approved.

If we’re building something big, we have to get consent,
But this means shifty payments, to someone rather bent.

They want our drinking water, mountains, harbours, beaches, seas they’ll take,
Politicians just hand them over, it’s like they’re also on the make.

We must worship te ao Maori, but no one tells us what that means,
I think it must be hidden in those big, flash limousines.

We can no longer have free speech and ask for common sense,
They say that means I’m racist and being rather dense.

Not even Santa can be safe, gone is his glorious red,
To be replaced by hooks and feather cloaks instead.

Why are these racists in my country, I really want to know?
But their head honchos just laugh at me, as their bank accounts gather dough.

It’s greed, power and lust, you fool. Nothing ever changes.

We’ve read the history books, you see and learnt how through the ages,
The meek and mild can be manipulated, made to hand over all their wages.

Elections? Bah! There’ll be no standing on our merit.
We’ll be entrenched and like scoundrels, all power we’ll inherit.

Like Jews in Nazi Germany, we’ll turn you into slaves
We’ll make you hated and you’ll be digging your own graves.

So the racists rule our country, we pay for their expertise,
In what I’m not too sure, while they have us in a squeeze.

We fund their lawyers to walk all over us,
And we’re respectful, we don’t want to make a fuss.

We fought against apartheid, but that was overseas,
Here in New Zealand, we dare not show displease.

So we sit and watch our country, as democracy’s destroyed,
At least we haven’t caused upset by being paranoid.
THE POET, Auckland

Wanganui Chronicle 7/1/19
MEMORIES
Danny Keenan (Chronicle, January 4) accuses William Colenso, who he calls a mission printer, who was present at the Treaty signing and who wrote a book in 1890, of making up history as he could not have remembered in such detail 50 years later. That may be true, but it is a fair guess that he had notes from the occasions.

In Danny's last two lines he does worse; he remembers the thoughts of Maori in 1890.

We know memories can be short and altered for gain. That's why we have lawyers; they write up an agreement and the parties sign to protect from forgotten or made-up memory.
G R SCOWN Wanganui

Wanganui Chronicle 5/1/19
MANGAPAPA LAND ‘SOLD NOT STOLEN’
In the Wanganui Chronicle. December 29. we see Harry Haitana's claim that "the Government of the time had literally stolen" Mangapapa and a claim that “... the land was never put up for sale".

To a casual reader it would appear the land was taken without payment by an earlier Government, but a simple search reveals Harry's grave allegation and claim to be wrong.

To quote from August 11, 1879, MA-MLP 1, 1899/20 78. Wynard and Purchas, Solicitors, to Native land Purchase Commissioner, Auckland, 30 January 1895, MA.MLP 1:

“On 11 March 1893 Wiremu Kauika wrote to the Native Minister (Cadman), offering to sell Mangapapa 1C1 and 1C2 Blocks (Wanganui) to the Crown. Mangapapa 1C had been through the Maori land Court. and there were 49 names in the original title,” Kauika wrote, “I advertised it in the newspaper a short time for leasing purposes but now they (the owners) wish me to sell it hence this letter to you. That land is in the midst of European land, the road runs right through it, there are cattle and sheep on it, if there had been only 4000 acres in the block, Europeans would have bought it but as it is they cannot legally do. It is good land suitable for the growth of grass.”

The requested purchase took place, although not at the price Kauika originally sought. I do not know the accepted (note: accepted) price, but then, as it is today, sellers asked for top prices. For example, In 1912, the Crown was offered a block of Maori freehold land In Kalwaka for £97,132 which today, allowing for inflation, would exceed $16 billion.

The facts are clear. The 49 owners asked the Crown to buy Mangapapa, the Crown and the owners agreed a purchase price, the Crown paid the agreed price and Mangapapa was sold. Not stolen.

These types of falsehoods, if repeated often enough, can eventually be touted as fact and, accordingly, must be challenged when ever they are made.
V W BALLANCE, Westmere


'FALSE' ACCOUNT
Potanga Neilson (Letters; January 3) says that a Confederation of United Tribes was established in 1808, and then in 1816 formed courts to enforce laws based on tikanga Maori.

That story comes from a false account that has been debunked in several articles in the Maori News website. There we learn that this Ko Huiarau, the cult that claims to be the Maori Parliament 1808-1947, Is complete nonsense.

During the period that this cult claims that law was formed and enforced, the country was actually in a state of complete anarchy. Tribes were at war, not joining in any such confederation.

In the one five-year period, 1820-1825, one In eight of the Maori population died in the inter-tribal wars; the toll in the 40 years 1800-1840 was at least 43,600. Their confederation was nowhere to be seen.

Neilson should stop spreading made-up stories, and we should all recognise the great good done to Maori after northern chiefs recognised the failure of their well-documented effort to set up a Confederation of the United Tribes in 1835 and whole-heartedly supported the handing of sovereignty to Britain by signing the Treaty of Waitangi.
JOHN ROBINSON, Walkanae

Bay of Plenty Times 5/1/19
NO RESPONSE
I have written individual letters to every MP on three occasions, a total of 366 and also to several ministers.

I have received 19 "pro forma" acknowledgements but not a single reply or answer to my queries from any member.

I have also contacted 18 national newspapers on this lack of accountability by government with no results.

We appear to have become a voiceless society, censored. Are our Parliament and its members unapproachable, not answerable to their constituents?

Has the media completely renounced any responsibility in this matter, repudiated any need to keep the public informed? If so. what is their purpose? Where is their social responsibility?
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Rotorua Daily Post 4/1/19
TE REO VOICE RECORDINGS NOT ACCEPTABLE
I had cause to phone our public library over the holiday period.

On this particular day the website said the library was open, however it was not, and my phone call was greeted with a lengthy message not in my language, English.

This is not acceptable. If there are those who wish to foist te reo upon us, so be it, but that message should be secondary. I take strong exception to having to wait through an unintelligible diatribe until I receive the information I require in my own language.
A N CHRISTIE, Rotorua