Posts tagged ‘Dim-Post’

February 10, 2012

“Culture key to stopping child abuse”

by Pete George

That’s the headline, but there’s nothing in the article on Green Paper for Vulnerable Children seminar that expands on the statement. The seminar was at the Hutton Theatre yesterday, sponsored by Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull.

Opening the seminar, Mr Cull said New Zealand’s child abuse rates suggested children were not highly valued.

The green paper contained good suggestions of how to protect children, but the issue was a very broad one, he said.

It was crucial to New Zealand’s future that more was done to protect children, he said.

There is an entrenched culture of violence throughout our society. Changing it is a big challenge, as illustrated by an extended blog discussion yesterday:

“It’s common knowledge that male bonding with children begins and ends with sporting events.”

Wrong, it begins with a sound thrashing and ends with a clip around the ear.

Dim-Post is more of an academic/intellectual blog where violence would seem to be out of place but there was strong defence of joking about violence against children.

It’s very difficult changing a culture like that. There were only a few people supporting child violence jokes as acceptable, but notable was the lack of criticism (apart from me).

Joking about violence, and not challenging it, contributes to the culture of violence we have in our society. It’s not just violent people to blame for violence, non-violent people need to speak out against. Remaining passive is a part of the problem.

There are a lot of people prepared to stand up and speak out against violence and other problems facing Kiwi kids. More required.

Hutton Theatre the venue for a discussion on children’s issues

(Channel 9) The Government has been circulating a ‘green paper’ discussion document on children’s issues, with a host of speakers travelling the country.

Dunedin’s Hutton Theatre was the venue for the Dunedin and Invercargill talks, which were described as ‘robust’, by one of the speakers.

July 11, 2011

Act, Maori, radicals and Dunedin

by Pete George

The Act party stirred up discussion over the weekend after their “Fed up with pandering to Maori radicals?” advertisement, and follow up comments by their “Creative Director” John Ansell who resigned yesterday – much of this played out on Kiwiblog, and it has been summarised on The Dim-Post.

Act and other MPs have been asked to comment.

Act campaign to provoke ‘conversations’ on NZ’s future: Calvert (ODT)

Hilary Calvert last night endorsed her party’s controversial newspaper campaign criticising Maori rights, saying the advertisements aimed to spark debate and “it’s good to have some things talked about”.

Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia described the advertising campaign as “deeply offensive” but Act leader Don Brash said he was proud of it as he had been “warning of this creeping separatism for some time”.

Approached for comment last night, Ms Calvert said as soon as people “stopped being offended”, conversations about how New Zealand could advance could be held.

“You can expect more of us saying `let’s talk about this’.

Dunedin-based Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei said Act’s campaign was a misguided attempt to win votes, and New Zealanders deserved more respect.

“It’s the same old extremist irrational hysteria,” she said.

I’m all for raising issues and initiating discussion – that’s the main objective of Your Dunedin – but I question the motives and methods used by Act here. They new they would be provoking and appealing to anti-Maori sentiment.

Act have accused and abused rather than highlighted the issue,  so it seems like a blatant attempt to boost their poll ratings – which in the latest TV3 poll released last night they dropped from 2.5% to 1.7%, although that won’t have been affected by what happened over the weekend.

Dr Brash:

“The racial tension is there now. There are a great number of people throughout the country who resent the fact that successive governments have created legal preference for Maori … We are simply reciting the fact that the National Government has continued a policy which Labour began.”

The Maori Party’s response was “entirely predictable”, he said.

“My concern is that successive governments have been willing to appease the Maori Party and other Maori radicals by adopting policies clearly contrary to what was intended in the Treaty of Waitangi.”

Does this affect us much here in the south? Southern Maori were early to settlers of their Treaty of Waitangi claims and got on with their business, it’s probably not such a big issue, although there will be people everywhere who don’t like any perception of Maori privilege.

It is something we should be prepared to talk about, but in Dunedin I suspect the main affect of this publicity campaign will be to further marginialise Act Party support.

One thing’s for sure, calling anyone who doesn’t agree with your approach cowards (as John Ansell has done) is not a smart way to initiate sensible debate.

I’ve posted further thoughts on this here – United sensibility.

Update: Ansell moves his tirade to attack women – Women and Act?

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