by Catherine Delahunty
If water keeps dripping it eventually changes the shape of a stone. Thus the D.R.I.P (Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People) will help change our country.
It took 22 years of hard work and tough negotiation to achieve this milestone and good on the Maori Party if they managed to speed up the National Government and get the Declaration signed.
It has been quite weird watching Labour attacking National and National playing with words, but the most useful comments came from Moana Jackson on “Native Affairs”. He said that the DRIP signing is another tool in the tool box available to all of us fighting for constitutional change based on Te Tiriti o Waitangi and for indigenous rights.
There may no obvious binding legal obligations which will alter New Zealand domestic law today but there is a sense that the complacent dominant culture will be pressured by a fresh moral imperative to recognise indigenous rights.
Interestingl,y the United States is now muttering about signing and they are the last taxi to leave the colonial ranks on this issue.
The Green Party has held a consistent position on this issue and as my taxi driver from Tuwharetoa said to me today “The Green Party is the conscience of the nation” . We were talking about mining, the Declaration and the problems with Treaty settlements and as usual it was a better conversation than watching Jim Anderton and Rodney Hide reciting the myths of the monocultural dinosaurs.
Kia kaha to the those rangatira who built this path to a better future.