Bigotry replugged

by frog

So, National is today returning to its old stomping ground of race. While this is predictable, it is nevertheless very sad. I, and I suspect a sizeable chunk of the National caucus, long for a day when both major parties seeking to lead a government spurn the politics of racial divisiveness. As Jeanette has just said in a press release:

Kiwis are proud of our country’s unique Maori identity, yet Don Brash wants to hide it away. While the vast majority of New Zealanders want to celebrate and foster Maori culture, Don Brash seems determined to obliterate it.

At the very time New Zealanders are marvelling at the new All Black haka, which showcases our Maori heritage to the world, Dr Brash is sharpening his scalpel to cut the Maori heart and soul out of New Zealand’s body…

Don Brash may have been an accomplished economist, but he’s a wretched historian. Maori have enjoyed a marked improvement in social statistics in the past 30 years, in no small part as a result of policies aimed at healing the wounds of our past and ensuring Maori can achieve everything they aspire to achieve. However, Dr Brash seems oblivious to this fact and is determined to undermine the very policies that have helped bring about the Maori cultural and economic renaissance.

National wishes to deny this greater social cohesion and Maori achievement and turn the clock back. It wants New Zealand to embrace the assimiliationist policies that were tried and failed in Australia. The Australian Government’s assimilationist policies led only to premature death, poverty, despair and societal breakdown, and New Zealand should have no part of them. We should be moving forward as a proud, socially cohesive nation, not a negative, divided, mean-spirited one.

Actually, I have been wondering for a while about the Parliamentary vote to abolish the Maori seats. Would Georgina te Heuheu cross the floor? Would other centrist, inclusive National MPs do likewise? Abolishing the seats wouldn’t just hurt social cohesion in New Zealand. It would also tear National’s caucus apart.

frog says

Published in Campaign | Society & Culture by frog on Mon, August 29th, 2005   


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