2 Letters

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Southland Times 14/11/18
RESPECT
On viewing the All Blacks v England game at Twickenham, I listened to the British rugby fans singing their hearts out to drown the All Blacks haka but was astonished to hear a New Zealand commentator question whether that was "respectful".

I accept I may be in a minority but I thought their song was rousing and a reciprocal challenge to the haka.

It is an anathema to me that any international team opposing the All Blacks has to remain mute and respectful in the face of what is a violent, intimidating war dance.

I lived for sport in my youth, and was always encouraged to try to win, but to understand that I was involved in a sporting game, not war.
MAUREEN J ANDERSON

Otago Daily Times 13/11/18
CAVE RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS NEED FOR ‘EVIDENCE’
CONGRATULATIONS to Toitu Otago Settlers Museum curator Sean Brosnahan for researching the story of Taranaki Maori prisoners being held captive in a cave in Shore St between 1869 and 1881 (ODT, 6.11.18).

He found nothing to support the cave story and instead some evidence suggested the structure was not even built until the early 20th century.

Local historian Ian Church also came to the same conclusion with his research (ODT, 20.1.12).

‘‘Mr Church said his studies showed the stories of the cave’s use by prisoners lacked one thing — evidence.’’

It shows the inherent danger of accepting oral history without conclusive evidence, and brings doubt to the validity of many similar claims.

The phrase ‘‘once upon a time’’ would probably precede many of these claims, if the rights were not already held by Disney Productions.

Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, there are still some who clearly do not want the truth to get in the way of a good grievance.

I suspect that given sufficient financial inducement, and with the aid of the Waitangi Tribunal, there are people out there who would have us believe they are also Father Christmas and the Easter Bunny.
MARK MUNRO Port Chalmers

NZ Herald 13/11/18
HAKA NOT RESPECTED
Our Maori haka, as performed by teams representing New Zealand, is held in deep respect by most countries who play the same codes. England showed us no respect by drowning out the All Black’s haka at Twickenham with loud singing. I believe any country displaying this rudeness should not have the opportunity the next time the two sides meet, to see our haka performed. This naturally would not apply to any of our home internationals as we New Zealanders are proud of these performances.

But the haka should only be performed by a New Zealand international team. This would not apply to any part of the Maori culture that demands a haka or any Maori representative teams. I believe the majority of New Zealanders would agree our haka is being grossly overdone.
I. S.THOMAS, Cambridge.

Northland Age 13/11/18
SELECTIVE MEMORY
Historian Professor Alexander Gillespie, of Waikato University, is very selective with reportage of the Land Wars. Some facts he chose not to mention.

Fatalities in the entire period, 4000, were less than 10 per cent of those killed in the Musket Wars, Maori by Maori, and considerably fewer than those of Hongi’s and Te Rauparaha’s violent raids.

Were he aware of colonial history he would realise how inappropriate were his comments on the suitability of the date of the Declaration of Independence for annual remembrance.

The request of the northern tribes, Ngapuhi, for aid from Britain was because of their fear that other tribes, having obtained muskets, might seek utu for the thousands that Hongi Hika had slaughtered in his southern rampages. The Declaration of Independence, apart from appropriating a British mercantile flag as their emblem, came to naught. The subsequent confederation with other tribes never occurred. There were no further meetings.

Michael King, in his Penguin History, called it a ‘contrived ceremony’ with no constitutional significance.

The treaty settlements he claimed as verification of the injustices of the colonial government were simply politically motivated largesse by Christopher Finlayson for the National Party to gratify their Maori parliamentary partners and the rubber stamp approval given by the Waitangi Tribunal to all Maori claims.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Dominion Post 13/11/18
KEEP IT FLEXIBLE
Dame Claudia Orange reportedly says (Nov 10): "We don't have a constitution. How fragile is our present understanding of rights in our nation without any defined constitution."

If by "defined" she means "written" then it is better we don't hidebound our unwritten constitutional tradition by having a "defined" constitution.

Rather, governments should continue to work through the Treaty of Waitangi settlements by negotiation, as they have done for decades now.

Henry Cooke (What NZ can learn from US midterms, Nov 10) points out Americans aren't naturally more divided or partisan than New Zealanders are, and yet their system has entrenched and encouraged deep divisions in recent years. "Unlike our evolving democracy, they can't fix the issues with their system because it has been solidified in a constitution."

Let's avoid such solidification by continuing in the Westminster tradition of an unwritten constitution, and adapting it where necessary to meet New Zealand needs, as has been done with the MMP system.
LANCE McELDOWNEY, Melrose

Southland Times 10/11/18
GLARING HOLES IN THE MYTH OF PARIHAKA
I must take issue with your editorial of November 6, 2018.

The idea of Parihaka celebrations becoming a national celebration on November 5 is often promoted by those who stand to profit, groups in Taranaki and North Islanders with sympathies towards them.

But you don't have to scratch the surface of the Parihaka myth to find glaring holes.

The government had very good reasons to suppress what could easily be described as a terrorist training camp.

Not only were government spies within the camp recording stockpiling of weapons, but the man organising the units of dissidents puling up surveyors pegs etc and standing at the right hand of Te Whiti was also the great and terrifying Titokowaru.

His violent campaign prior to joining Parihaka was nearly successful in collapsing the North Island settlements, land prices plummeted as settlers fled to Australia.

His reviving cannibalism as a weapon of war and killing the legendary Von Tempsky is just the tip of an awesome story.

He also knew from personal experience how quickly leadership can change in those sort of movements, as did the government.

It should be remembered that the response of the South Island Maori communities to the Taranaki land wars was to raise funds for the displaced settlers and organise a militia to protect their Takata Pora, the southern term for Europeans, from the northerners.

The concept that Maori were and are a homogeneous nation with a united world view is the sort of institutionalised racism that has caused many of the problems Maori face today.

I would have expected the editor of Southland's paper to champion our world view as we are and always have been unique.

Guy Fawkes should remain as a reminder of the Protestant, Catholic silliness that brought many of our ancestors to Nui Tireni/New Zealand.
MARTIN MCCULLY

New Zealand Herald 9/11/18
STADIUM PARTNERSHIP
Simon Wilson quotes Liane Ngamane of the Independent Maori Statutory Board as being disappointed there was “no acknowledgement of the Treaty partnership” in plans for a new stadium. My understanding is that the Treaty is between Maori and the Government. The citizen-elected body that is the Auckland Council is not a party to the Treaty and has no legal liability towards Maori as distinct from other citizens.

Certainly there is no “partnership” and while Maori culture and art should feature in activities of the council, there is no good reason every public activity needs to be subject to the approval of unelected Maori.
TREVOR ELWIN, Half Moon Bay.


OURS IS NO BETTER
I find it strange that people can criticise the US electoral system when our own, with two electoral systems, one for Maori and one for the rest, leaves much to be desired and our own Government was not even elected by a clear majority. Like it or not, the US Constitution guarantees certain freedoms, whereas we have none, but rely upon the honesty of our politicians and the power of the voting booth to do the right thing. And Trump, like or hate him, is elected by his own people not by us so our views should be put aside in the name of good relations with the US.
BRUCE WOODLEY, Birkenhead

Dominion Post 9/11/18
FINDING NZ
The terms "discovery" and "rediscovery" in relation to countries are, as some recent correspondents have pointed out, subjective, depending on the point of view of the speaker.

It is for that reason I prefer the absolute way of describing Abel Tasman's involvement as being the "first known European to have sighted and documented New Zealand Aotearoa".

The first sentence in the Admiralty's instructions to James Cook made a distinction between "countries hitherto unknown" and ". . distant parts which though formerly discover'd have yet been imperfectly explored . . ." The Admiralty and Cook were well aware of Tasman in these parts.

The instructions were, if Cook did not find the Unknown Southern Continent as far south as 40°Sth, he was to proceed in a westerly direction till ". . [he] fall in with the eastern side of the land discoverer'd by Tasman and now called New Zeland [sic]".
DIRK RINCKES, WaIkanae

Waikato Times 8/11/18
UNIVERSITIES AND FREE SPEECH
It would seem that Massey University is not alone in its efforts to suppress free speech. Review proceeding.

In the autumn edition of Auckland University’s Alumni magazine language professor Stephen May described Hobson’s Pledge as ‘‘racist and militantly anti-Maori.’’

Only when a letter from Hobson’s Pledge lawyer stated that the statement was untrue and defamatory and implied the possibility of legal action did the university’s Vice Chancellor, Stuart McCutcheon answer, acknowledging that the article was ‘‘arguably defamatory and should not have been published.’’

An apology to that effect was published ‘on line’ and in the spring edition.

How a group that actively works to promote equality for all can be deemed racist, whilst a group claiming ethnic privilege is not, defies logic.

The media continues promoting negative comments about Hobson’s Pledge without giving them a right of reply.

It is to be hoped that the Marxist left wing philosophies now rampant in the universities of the US and Canada do not flourish in our seats of learning.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

Otago Daily Times 7/11/18
NGAI TAHU CLAIMS
Lisa Tumahai. of Ngai Tahu, claims (ODT, 1.11.18) that "the principle of partnership ... is clearly outlined in the Treaty of Waitangi ... it is a key principle espoused by the Treaty".

In 1991, Government constitutional lawyer Paul McHugh said "no-one pretends that the language of `partnership' and 'fiduciary obligation' was exchanged on the seaside promontory at Waitangi in 1840. The Courts have stressed their construction of what amounts to a contemporary mythology of the Treaty."

If one looks at the relevant Court of Appeal cases concerning "partnership", there is no clear espousal of such— just ambiguous musings rather than the precision of expression that is expected from the courts.

There are, however, express determinations that there is no equality in the Crown-Maori relationship.

Ms Tumahai should look at the 1989 Tainui and Crown Forests cases to see that claims to equal status with the Crown are bunkum.

The myth of "partnership" serves political agendas not law or equity.

Ngai Tahu seeks rights greater than everyone else, in direct contradiction to Article Three which conveyed the same rights and duties of citizenship as everyone else— hardly a strategy for future harmony.
BRUCE MASON Ranfurly

Dominion Post 6/11/18
INHERENTLY RACIST
Joel Maxwell (Playing with the notion Pakeha is a racist word, Nov 5) may well claim the word Pakeha is not an insult, but the problem with the term is that it refers to everyone who is not Maori, no matter what race or ethnicity.

Being Maori means being tangata whenua and therefore holding a special status that comes with ethnic-based rights and a superior recognition of culture and beliefs.

The term Pakeha may not in itself be derogatory, but it does by definition carry a cultural inferiority. For these reasons it is an inherently racist term.

I am of European heritage, of Welsh and Scottish descent. I don't describe myself as Welsh or Scottish, and nor as a Pakeha, but rather as a New Zealander or a Kiwi, because these are inclusive terms. They include everybody who considers New Zealand home, be they of European, Asian, African or American extraction, and are also inclusive of Maori.

We need to be a country where we celebrate our differences, where our diversity enriches us, where ethnicity matters but does not bestow privilege, where all citizens are united equally under the law. If we continue down the path of separatism we will fail as country.
RICHARD PRINCE, Tauranga

Northland Age 6/11/18
LIBELLOUS AND MALICIOUS
It would seem that Massey University is not alone in its efforts to suppress free speech (review proceeding). In the autumn edition of Auckland University's alumni magazine Ingenio, language professor Stephen May described Hobson's Pledge as "racist and militantly anti-Maori."

Only when a letter from a Hobson's Pledge lawyer stated that the statement was untrue and defamatory, and implied the possibility of legal action, did the university's Vice-Chancellor, Stuart McCutcheon, answer, acknowledging that the article was "arguably defamatory and should not have been published."

An apology to that effect was published online, and in Ingenio's spring edition.

How a group that actively works to promote equality for all can be deemed racist, whilst a group claiming ethnic privilege is not, defies logic.

The media continue promoting negative comments about Hobson's Pledge without giving them a right of reply.

It is to be hoped that the Marxist left-wing philosophies now rampant in the universities of the US and Canada do not flourish in our seats of learning.

But then Stephan May's statements are an obvious example of hate speech, libellous and malicious.
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa


MAKING IT UP?
I don't know if Wally Hicks (letters November 1) has a comprehension problem or 'simply' likes making stuff up based on revisionist fabricated neo-history.

Whereas, in high-sounding, flowery leftist form, Mr Hicks 'estimates', 'believes' and 'more or lesses', conversely I have produced verifiable facts and figures.

Did CAP give a reason for abandoning their Maori-dominant 'conversation'? I wonder if they abandoned it in the face of huge public opposition and the NZCPR's so-called 'meaningless' (Wally's word) ICRP campaign? Well done NZCPR, another win for democracy, as in my view nearly 80 per cent of Kiwis would support your stance.

Mr Hicks finds it a funny thing that "neither CAP nor Constitution Aotearoa are even talking about a Treaty-based written constitution. Yet these two links are clearly talking about a Treaty-based written constitution — CAP https://tinyurl.com/y8tgvngx — Constitution Aotearoa https://tinyurl.com/ya2hepnx

And of course,' treaty-based `means the bogus version of the treaty with fictitious partnership and treaty principles add-ons.

While groups, NZCPR, Hobson's Pledge, Kiwi Frontline and others, that share

common views, goals and interests could be regarded as esprit de corps, they are not a form of tribalism. Further, they are not confined to race, as is tribal Maori, and do not have an agenda for Maori sovereignty of our country, an agenda supported by a few misguided unpatriotic non-Maori.

Since 1840 'one law for all' and 'racial equality' have been part of our heritage and birthright, and these hallmarks are nothing to be ashamed of. Only a separatist would see those doctrines as holding our country back.

What's holding our country back is the funnelling of wealth and assets into elite part-Maori pockets coupled with the huge burden, socially and financially, of the many race-based Maori-only special privileges and rights being handed out, which would be far better applied to all Kiwis.

Mr Hicks stated in the Northland Age (June 14, 2018) that Dr Muriel Newman and Hobson's Pledge used the term `daughter slaughter.' On June 19, 2018, I challenged him to produce evidence of this. To date he has not done so — enough said on the question of credibility, methinks.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo

The Press 3/11/18
NGAI TAHU
It is interesting that neither of the articles about Ngai Tahu's financial activities (Oct 26, 30), inform readers of Ngai Tahu taxpayer-subsidised status.

An uninformed reader would assume that these were businesses owned by private shareholders, not a charitable trust with its income tax-exempt status.

For example, one article states that as the business was run under an iwi model, its shareholders had a strong requirement for social and environmental responsibility.

Iwi are not shareholders at all.

They are the beneficiaries of the business activities undertaken by the 39 companies that have been registered as tax charities, as well as numerous other joint ventures and interests in other companies.

Ngai Tahu Farming Ltd is owned by Ngai Tahu Corporation Ltd, which in turn is owned by Ngai Tahu Charitable Trust, of which the sole trustee is Te Runanga 0 Ngai Tahu.
DR MICHAEL GOUSMETT, University of Canterbury Independent Researcher and Public Historian

Sunlive / Weekend Sun 2/11/18
CHURCH SHOULD NOT SUPPORT CLAIM
Why is the Anglican Church apologising to a couple of Tauranga sub-tribes for selling its land to the Crown in 1867 "without seeking their agreement"? There was no need to seek anybody's agreement since the Church Missionary Society had bought the land outright by two purchases in 1838 and 1839 – transactions that were ticked off by Governor Hobson's Land Commission after 1840 as conveyances that had been made freely between willing sellers and a willing buyer.

Either the Church is plain dumb or it is colluding with the tribal elite to deceive the public.

At the Anglican Synod in May 2018, the Church said that it would support an application to the Waitangi Tribunal by the Ngai Tamarawaho and Ngati Tapu to get some ‘compensation’ (from the taxpayer) for this ‘grievance’ that historically does not exist.

As we wrote in our recent book Gate Pa and Te Ranga: The Full Story "If the Anglican Church genuinely wants to create harmony and integrity in society, it should not be misrepresenting historical truths in support of a bogus claim for a non-existent grievance that has as its object the further enrichment of the tribal elite at the expense of the taxpaying public".
J MCLEAN AND J ROBINSON, Wellington.


Northland Age 1/11/18
WHAT A SHAMBLES
Fellow Kiwis, just ponder the series of conundrums you are about to encounter.

In 2019 Chief Justice and Supreme Court president and one-time legal adviser to the Maori Council, Sian Seerpoohi Elias, in some eyes a driver of judicial activism, reaches the compulsory retirement age of 70 years, and frankly won’t be missed.

Coincidentally Christopher Finlayson, ex-Attorney General and Minister for Treaty Settlements, and one-time legal counsel for Ngai Tahu, has indicated he will leave Parliament by next election — no loss either. Some sources suggest he may possibly be interested in any Supreme Court vacancy despite the apparent incompatibility between political and judicial roles.

Notwithstanding the mega millions given to tribes and the abject apologies for mythical grievances, Mr Finlayson inanely thinks his main achievement has been Marine And Coastal Area Act (2011),(MACA), notwithstanding the myriad claims he maintained would never occur having mushroomed. His assessment that only rare applications would surface, made for public consumption was arrant nonsense.

This will prove to be one of the most racially-divisive and controversial pieces of bs legislation ever passed in New Zealand.

Next cab off the rank is Ngai Tahu itself, which seems to have had a clandestine meeting about floating its own currency. Good luck with that hogwash.

Representing one of the worst travesties ever foisted on taxpaying Kiwis, the Ngai Tahu multi-million dollar settlement with top-ups was given for what exactly? Particularly when only around a couple of thousand Maori were living in the South Island in 1840, and never signed the treaty.

In my view the operations are noncontributory creating no genuine Maori business /economy, being based on taxpayer funding support, therefore living off efforts of others. All this while becoming invasive, like a cancer steadily creeping into most South Island institutions, race-based and privileged, paying no meaningful tax, so no wonder it is prospering, with current assets around $1.6 billion.

Hold on, it is all happening. Ms Devoy’s five-year tenure as Race Relations Commissioner controversially came to an end in August. We now have the spectacle of some Johnny-comelately taking injunction proceedings in the High Court because he was not short-listed for the job.

The answer is simple; abolish the meaningless post forthwith. Problem solved, especially as it looks like New Zealand will never get a regular, impartial Kiwi selected who might, God forbid, perhaps relate to 85 per cent of the population.

The whole outfit has become a racially-divisive self-centred hot bed of PC activism anyway. Just check out the credentials and backgrounds of the most recent seat warmers — who in the wildest dreams could say they were qualified or suitable appointments to take on the task?

Now updating MACA, here is an aberration — Auckland City Council, and it is assumed most other councils state they won’t actively oppose applications, presumably even those without merit (which is probably all of them) along with — wait for it — the Attorney-General and by inference the Minister of Justice, also stating they won’t oppose applications either.

This nonsense exists even while the Crown is fully funding even dubious part-Maori applicants to the tune of tens of millions in legal costs, yet will not fund the likes of CORANZ or other groups, like NZCPR, who robustly oppose the MACA try-ons.

In reality, MACA needs repealing immediately and Labour’s Foreshore and Seabed Act 2004 reinstated. In its current state, MACA has all the makings of another classic rort on Kiwi citizens.

Just wait for the freshwater ownership fiasco to unfold and farcical ongoing te reo Maori language $600 million funding, which defies belief, to hit the fan. However, that’s another story.

Kiwis need to sit down and ask themselves, is this the type of world they want to live in? Make no mistake, the above stuff is just the tip of the iceberg. Or are they finally prepared to stand up and be counted and say enough is enough? You would have to be a simpleton not the see the common thread in this mish mash.
ROB PATERSON, Matapihi


EGO TRIP
In spite of the overwhelming results in the Maori wards referendum from the people he has been chosen to represent, 78 per cent against them, the mayor, Garry Webber, has chosen a reprehensible path to achieve his personal wish and give powers in decision-making to unelected Maori by creating new committees for them.

Is that the office for which he was elected?

Mr Webber, what do you see as the requirements of your office? To carry out your mayoral duties to satisfy the will of the constituents who appointed you, and who expressed their wishes comprehensively in the poll on Maori wards? Or is it to gratify your ego by carrying out a personal agenda and to appoint unelected Maori to advisory positions on new committees?
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa


PRIVILEGED
I enjoyed the white middle-class privilege mentioned by Brian Malone in his Herald on Sunday letter on the judicial persecution of Maori. I enjoyed the privilege of being fully-employed my entire working life, whether it was fighting in Korea for the UN or working after school hours as a barman to supplement my teacher’s salary while raising five children.

This employment enabled me to pay the taxes needed to supply the benefits to support the families of unjustly imprisoned Maori.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

The Press 1/11/18
PAST ‘PEAK COW’
Ngai Tahu claims to be environmentally responsible, but what does that mean when it is replacing Eyewell Forest in North Canterbury not with tree seedlings but with 14,000 dairy cows? (Oct 30). Canterbury in general and North Canterbury in particular is well past ‘peak cow’ and dairy stock numbers need reducing, not increasing, in order to achieve unpolluted rivers and land.
BRIAN TURNER, Waikuku

NZ Herald 1/11/18
ON PRAYER
Winston Peters, commenting on the Speaker's decision to change the parliamentary prayer, said, “Let Parliament decide, not one man”. Wouldn't that be a wonderful principle to apply to the formation of coalition governments.
DAVE MURRAY, Grey Lynn.

NZ Herald 31/10/18
COMMEMORATING NZ WARS
Alexander Gillespie believes that Anzac Day should include the New Zealand Wars. My concern is why these wars’ commemorations are being run, it seems, only by Maori. Of the approximately 3000 who died, some 1000 were British soldiers and militia. Their descendants are not being consulted. My forebears arrived in 1841 and some lost their lives in the Waikato and Taranaki wars.

No one has approached me or my family.

To use 1845 as the starting point for commemorations conveniently rules out the holocaust that was the Musket Wars, the invasion of the Chathams and the genocide of the Moriori and Te Rauparaha’s blood-drenched rampage through the South Island.

It seems the only part of New Zealand history that Maori want commemorated is where history can be revised and so weave a new korowai of victimhood to improve their ideological interests and financial position.
RICHARD PRINCE, Tauranga.

Gisborne Herald 30/10/18
STOP ‘RACISM’ BASHING
It really disappoints the general public to be bashed day after day by people like Charmaine Fouhy and Lara Meyer. They are obsessed with stirring up people who are better balanced, more understanding and get on with their lives.

Ray Hill understands racism is happening in every country in the world but we are better than that. We simply don’t need it in our news. People I speak to are fed up with it, move on.

Before picking on Ray Hill for your belief of poor judgement, you should all know Ray has done a huge amount for our community, as well his son Andrew Hill saving lives. He has led a great life and achieved and produced a lot of good for us all with a fine, intelligent family. He is well above your depressing highlighting.

It really saddens me you flog racism like a dead horse, to no avail. It’s up to you to moderate, be constructive and make this Tairawhiti better than the rest of the world, not join them. You are doing that by stirring the pot and annoying the rest of the community with bad space in our letters that are not positive but extremely negative.
ALAIN JORION


EVERY RIGHT TO FEEL AGGRIEVED
Friday night’s front-page headline disturbed me. The inference is that we possibly have a biased and uneducated section of our council who require tutoring in what is acceptable to Maori. Are we going to follow this up with a study on what is acceptable to non-Maori?

I voted for councillors, not because of their racist views but rather because of their intellect, business acumen and simple common sense.

The heated comments from councillor Akuhata-Brown, who overheard a private conversation between two Pakeha councillors, has led to this absolute debacle of “what is required by Maori”.

Perhaps that councillor needed to “rein in her objection” at a far earlier stage of this discussion.

Remember, as I have stated in prior letters, racism is a two-way street, and, to my mind, Meredith has milked this to the best of her ability.

I actually voted for her because of my misguided thoughts that she had a great deal of unbiased intellect, but now I realise she is as racist as those she accused. Her ongoing vendetta has led to suggestions that unless our council, each and every one, becomes compliant with what Maori deem as acceptable then they are literally unqualified to be councillors.

Perhaps we could question Meredith and ask how racist is she, if she prioritises Maori protocol against that of non-Maori.

I agree, I do have a natural degree of bias — as do those who state, “You are wrong, we are right, you must accept our way.”

A very revered Maori told me this, and criticised this view much more intelligently than I could have.

Councillors Cranston, Burdett and MacLean, you have every right to feel aggrieved.
MIKE MULROONEY


POLL DOESN’T SHOW RACISM
Re: Open minds required.
Lara, I do have to take issue with your statement that because 70 percent of respondents to the latest poll disagreed with tikanga training, we have a problem with racism.

You appear to have adopted the attitude that anybody who questions the relevance of learning tikanga is automatically a racist. Your comment that anyone who finds your words offensive/impertinent simply reinforces this impression.

It will be a sad day if people cannot hold differing views without being accused of being racist.

My view is that if people wish to learn tikanga they should have the opportunity, if they do not wish to they should not be vilified. Like you I am happy to sign my name to this letter.
MICHAEL ARNABOLDI

Wanganui Chronicle 27/10/18
MAORI HEALTH
Re: Article in Dominion Post (October 17) - "Tamihere urges Maori for Maori".

John Tamihere wants Maori to have their own health system and says it's a breach of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Nowhere in the Treaty does it says Maori have special rights. They are not different than the rest of us. Their physical bodies are exactly the same as all other human beings — and they don't need a different health system because of the different culture.

Separationism is not going to solve any problems. Humans, no matter what colour their skin nor what belief system they adhere to are all equal.

Once the separation starts, it will seep into all aspects of life and that will eventually cause many associated problems. ( Edited)
IAN BROUGHAM Wanganui

Gisborne Herald 25/10/18
LET’S DROP TALK OF RACISM, GRIEVANCES AND MOVE ON
Racism is still alive and well here, according to Meredith’s “What’s on in council” column. It sure is, as she won’t let us forget it. She is besotted with it, it goes round and around in her brain and can find no escape hatch. Surely, Meredith, you can find better things to occupy your thoughts?

I went to the opening of the Waikanae cycle/walkway. Meng put on a barbie, spoke in Maori and then in English, and then a Maori elder spoke about our beautiful bay and then about confiscation of ancestral land and of course Captain Cook killing their whanau. It is an unfortunate state of affairs that we have to listen all the time to this, year in and year out.

I suggest to Meredith that she be like me, at 74 — get on your bike, ride around and breathe in the fresh air. It cleanses the brain, makes you feel good and lets you see what good there is in people and around this beautiful city.

If there is racism, we are not going to stop it if some people keep reminding us of it.

So let’s drop it, move on and perhaps one day we will all be mates.

Hmmm, nice thought?
RAY HILL

Northland Age 30/10/18
IT DOESN’T WORK
I would like to remind Wally Hicks (letters October 25) that just a few years back New Zealand went down the path of a treaty based written constitution, and it failed to pass.

In December 2013 the Independent Constitution Review Panel, headed by Dr Muriel Newman (NZCPR), put out a report, A House Divided, by David Round (spokesperson). Summarised, this ICRP panel’s findings, based on 1222 submissions, were:

* 96 per cent opposed the Treaty of Waitangi being included in our constitutional arrangements.

* 95 per cent thought that any change to our constitution is only legitimate if approved by voters through a public referendum.

* 86 per cent wanted to retain our present flexible constitutional arrangements, where the ultimate law-making power is held by elected MPs.

Then an OIA inquiry for the government’s Constitutional Advisory Panel (2010 – 2013) findings showed that New Zealanders oppose tribalism. This racially-biased CAP panel found that 72 per cent of the 5259 written submitters did not want a treaty-based written constitution.

Mr Hicks, tribalism was clearly not working in early 1800s (hence the Treaty and the ceding of sovereignty), from all accounts tribalism is not working in South Africa 2018, and as the figures show above, by far the most New Zealanders believe it is not the way forward for New Zealand.
GEOFF PARKER, Kamo


TREATIES GALORE
Gorbachev and Reagan signed a treaty on the limitation of intermediate-range nuclear weapons. I think both were sincere, and felt a large step forward had hopefully been made. It’s been cancelled, a decision an old, respected Gorbachev says is not the work of a great mind.

Oh dear, treaties. History is full of them. Some last for a long time, but most are broken and confined to the history books. With all the hoo haa of Britain leaving Europe, a very wise old Queen Elizabeth dropped the strong statement on how valued and important the long-standing relationships with the Netherlands are.

Greed and the lust for power and possessions, plus the movement of history, are the death of most treaties. Who said what, when and why? In 1840 the only way statements could be recorded was with a pen. Wise and honest people, as well as the ratbags, land sharks, and the suppliers of gut rot booze, all played their part.

The Treaty of Waitangi meant well but obviously gave meanings interpreted differently by many, then and now.

Well-written, honest accounts of our history to the present day are available, laying out the shocking, and uplifting, brilliant, heroic and disgraceful movements of our history; 178 years of blood, sweat and tears for Maori and Pakeha workers. A fair degree of security for many, and obscene wealth for a few paper-shufflers. The America’s Cup and people sleeping and begging ashore on the streets.

There is still much work to do for Maori and Pakeha who need a leg up.

Who said and did what generations ago is of interest, but I know several Ngapuhi living and working in the South Island and doing well with their families who have no intention of ever returning to a North with no prospects.

Many young Maori are leaping ahead with qualifications and speaking te reo. They are gaining mana, are responsible, and taking the lead with no financial assistance from Ngapuhi. Many will have to use their talents away from the place they wish to call their turangawaewae. Some will be employed by Ngai Tahu, for example, and other tribes.

We only have the present. It’s what is required now, respected elders. We do understand your difficulties, but your famous and historic tribe needs the progress wisely-invested funds will bring urgently.
HAMIORA


HARDLY GENOCIDE
Calls for a Land Wars Commemoration Day are misplaced, to say the least.

According to a government website, the total death toll in all the battles and skirmishes fought between Crown troops and loyal Maori on the one hand, and aggressive challengers to the Crown’s sovereignty on the other, hardly suggests conflict that was widespread or genocidal in intent.

The numbers below aggregate data for individual battles fought between 1845 1872, as provided by the historian James Cowan, “who sometimes overstated the casualties of Maori who opposed the settlers.”

Rebel Maori: 2154, Crown troops and loyal Maori 745.

Since there were an estimated 100,000 natives in 1840, the total number who died opposing the Crown over the 27-year period in question was just over 2 per cent of that number.

To put these numbers into perspective averaged out over 27 years, that’s around 80 rebel Maori casualties per annum, or 0.08 per cent of the 1840 Maori population in any one year. Some 8/100ths of one per cent.

If this was “genocide,” the Crown was clearly either not very good at it, or wasn’t trying too hard.

According to various estimates, some 60,000 – 100,000 natives died either directly (murdered) or indirectly (starved to death because their tribes neglected cultivating for fighting) as the result of the intertribal Musket Wars of the 1820s and 1830s.

These numbers make it clear the true genocide of New Zealand history was Maori-on-Maori.

Far more apt that instead of a Land Wars Commemoration Day, we have a Kai Tangata Day in remembrance of the Maori people killed, eaten, enslaved, raped, or dispossessed by other Maori prior to February 1840.
PETER HEMMINGSON, Facebook

Nelson Mail 26/10/18
EDUCATION AND DISCIPLINE
Jeremy Matthews Nelson, October 19 In the 1950s and ’60s, New Zealand’s education encompassed far more than academic achievement. My generation faced discipline in every aspect of growing – respect for authority, behaviour standards, and respect for elders. Transgressors were punished – cane, strap, detentions – and outside school, even by adults who weren’t family. Society was strengthened as we absorbed what was acceptable and what wasn’t, and from the consequence that eventually we’d instill the same values in others.

In unforgiveable, touchy-feely idiocy, corporal punishment was banned in schools in the ’90s and in the home in the early ’00s – resulting in today’s so prevalent, ill-disciplined, selfish specimens. Classes turned nightmarish for teachers, ensuring today’s shortage. Self-discipline is non-evident among the smartphone-educated set. Yet on them hangs the future of our country and Western civilisation.
JIM CABLE, Nelson,

Hawkes Bay Today 26/10/18
TE MATA TRACK REPAIRS AN EXPENSIVE ‘STUPIDITY’
The Hastings Council website is carrying a story about repairs to the Te Mata Peak track. What part of "don't waste our rates" does this council not understand?

The Mayor and HDC executive want to close the Te Mata track (and waste money building a new one) and now the ratepayers are going to fund $50,000 to $60,000 for repairs to a track we can't use, won’t be allowed to use and which will no longer exist in the near future.

What level of insanity is this?

Because the original track team were not allowed to finish the job, it's understandable the track is unsafe. And perhaps a little more accurate information from council would be in order — it wasn't shut off due to safety concerns, it was dosed because a whinging minority wanted to prevent the completion and stop the public from using it.

The council doesn't carryout its core services properly without wasting money on this stupidity.
STUART PERRY Hastings

Stuart Perry’s letter relates to this propaganda
https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/369421/controversial-craggy-range-track-found-to-be-dangerous

Waikato Times 25/10/18
WATER WARNING
Tom O’Connor 20th Oct) seems unaware of the anarchy that would result from his suggestion that all free-flowing water in New Zealand be owned by Maori. Does he have any idea of the mafia-type blackmail and abuse that would result from a few elite, instead of an elected government, having control of this resource?

The political ruckus over a little bottled water going off-shore is purely a tactic to get us demanding the Government charge for water at source. As they say, be careful what you wish for.

Water is the essence of all life and fundamental to our economy.

That is why Common Law vests water in the Crown to manage it fairly for the benefit of us all. Any alternative would be disaster.
GEOFF PARKER, Whangarei


WATER WARNING 2
Tom O’Connor wrote an interesting piece on ownership and the different cultural approaches to the concept of ownership.

Something which all concepts of ownership share is that of responsibility. That is if you own something then you are responsible for it, in good times and bad.

Of course the owner or owners can try and seek redress from those they may feel have caused the problem but ultimately as owners they are responsible. To take a very simple example if I own a car which gets a speed ticket I am responsible for paying the fine, unless I can prove that I was not in control of the vehicle at the time of the offence and I can say who was.

In the case of water the owner or owners not only benefit from that water but are responsible for what that water does. At present the state nominally ‘owns’ the water, and when things go bad, it is the state that is responsible for cleaning up the consequences.

Maybe parties should be a bit wary before rushing to claim ownership of our water resources.
J. C. ROSS, Hamilton

Northland Age 25/10/18
TRIBAL CONTROL
Except for schools, and then only for a limited period in our past, Alexandra Simons' grandmother has always been allowed to speak Maori (Life for an exiled language, October 18).

That she and others did not do so was their or their elders' choice. Possibly a choice made because they could see huge advantages in speaking English.

Does Ms Simons know that New Zealand taxpayers currently fund this now 'fashionable' hobby language to the tune of up to $600 million annually, and have done so for many years, money that arguably would be better spent on housing, education, health etc for all New Zealanders?

Government stats for years 2001-2013 show that even with the above copious funding and aggressive advocating from bicultural quarters, the language has declined through lack of proprietor interest.

Why she believes that Maori should be our first language is beyond me when English is the commercial language of the world. Which leads me to believe "normalising" to reo isn't about communication. It is about tribalists imposing political control over New Zealanders.
GEOFF PARKER Kamo


FACE FACTS TEACHERS
Teachers have quickly jumped on to the salary hike bandwagon (along with most other usual suspects), which they no doubt regard as their God-given right as a pay back from Labour/Greens for election support.

Teachers, particularly the activist clique, are often regarded by many as a carping PC lot when it suits their agendas. Remember their normal working hours are around 8am-4pm daily (week days only), they get all public holidays, and on top of that they have 12 weeks’ annual holidays thrown in to boot.

Tellingly, however, one reality is that under their watch the New Zealand education system and academic achievement levels have been going backwards, and they must take some responsibility for this, in tandem with successive dozy governments.

Inveigling young school kids and parents to rally in support of their wage claims has a poor look about it for teachers. Some may see these conclusions as over-generalising, but from many reports they are not far wide of the mark.

If teachers want to strike and march in protest on wage claims, then do so in their own time.

A good start, as some suggest, would be to do so during the term holidays or Christmas holidays, between December 20 and January 31, plus hold all stop work meetings outside normal school hours. I sincerely hope teachers are not being paid by Kiwi taxpayers when they are off work protesting and crying woe is me.

They might also get more support if they addressed and took on board the pressing issues with the likes of the race-based Code of Professional Responsibility and Standards for Teaching Profession (2017), with its complex ethical dilemmas, behavioural/ disciplinary woes and Tiriti o Waitangi nonsense, agreed that class sizes of up to 30 pupils, which was the norm in the 1950s to 1980s, are acceptable, as most students that experienced those levels have succeeded and progressed through life okay.

Common sense would also go a long way towards providing good outcomes.

If teachers are serious about improving conditions, just have a good hard look at themselves, accept some home truths, face up to the real facts, and work with Kiwis to address them. With tunnel vision current mindsets teachers can cause more trouble for the rest of us than they are worth — PC agendas, preciousness and race-based inclinations are not pluses.

Presumably private school teachers are not involved in this salary/ conditions bunfight.
ROB PATERSON. Matapihi

Dominion Post 25/10/18
MAORI HEALTH FUNDING
Recent articles on Maori health funding disturb me on two fronts: the general state of Maori health and the implication that by not directing enough of the health budget to Maori, New Zealand is a racist country. from what I have read, Maori health is not greatly influenced by genetic factors. So the main factor must be lifestyle. Poverty must enter the equation but is not exclusive to Maori. Maori nurses paid less (Oct 20) states that access to private healthcare is out of reach for many Maori, who cannot afford it, and, for some reason, this is not fair. It is also out of reach for many non-Maori and is not a factor in allocating health funding.

There will never be enough money to fund healthcare. Maori have equal access to the country's healthcare system plus an extra 2 per cent of the budget administered by Maori health providers. Nurses in district health boards and general practice clinics are paid the same regardless of ethnicity. What Maori health providers pay their nurses is their decision when allocating the funds available to them. The assertion, and I have no reason to doubt it, that these nurses are paid 25 per cent less than mainstream nurses is not an indication of "institutional racism". While applauding Kerri Nuku's efforts to improve Maori health, I deplore her approach to the United Nations in an effort to depict New Zealand as a racist country.
MURRAY CHRISTISON, Napier

Wanganui Chronicle 25/10/18
IWI SETTLEMENT
May I suggest, through your columns, that Potonga Neilson set up a Givealittle page to fund a case to the International Tribunal at The Hague?

He may also take advice from Tuku Morgan and Sir Tipene ORegan on how to manage Treaty settlement funds. They have turned their meagre funds into enviable enterprises, whereas his iwi gambled their lavish settlement away.
BOB HARRIS Wanganui

NZ Herald 24/10/18
PAYING FOR GENERATIONS
Chris Findlayson said "I've done my bit for the country ".

Has he ever! As Treaty Negotiations Minister he introduced the current seabed and foreshore legislation, this being one of the most divisive and controversial pieces of legislation ever.

We will be paying the price of this for generations to come in both a financial and racial sense.
GREG MOIR, Kerikeri.

Dominion Post 24/10/18
MAORI NURSES
The article "Maori nurses paid less" (Oct 18) reported situations which should not be happening in the employment conditions of Maori nurses, the treatment of Maori patients and the politics of referring matters to the Waitangi Tribunal.

A key piece of information was the statistic that Maori nurses made up about 7 per cent of the Nurses Organisation. On a population basis there should be double that number.

The article did not address remedies in this area relating to the key issues of work attitude, recruitment and training. There are much wider implications in this respect.
MIKE WILLIAMS, Taita

Rotorua Daily Post 23/10/18
GREENS' MOVE PUTS TROUT FISHING AT RISK
It has become very obvious that the amendment to the Conservation Act regarding freshwater fishing proposed by the Green Party, and supported by NZ First, will result in another privilege for Maori.

Given that the draconian changes to trout fishing, in particular, enabling DoC to remove sports fish from waterways, enabling the commercial farming of trout, and enabling our non-indigenous freshwater fish to become part of Treaty of Waitangi claims, will put an end to trout fishing as we know it today.

Such a drastic backward step would. therefore, open the door here in Rotorua for more cases such as the Green Lake, where today only Maori can fish.

What has been particularly surprising is that Fish and Game, which has successfully managed our freshwater fisheries for over 50 years, have not been consulted over this amendment.

It is therefore imperative that the proponents of this amendment get the message from all supporters of the current fishing regime we have in New Zealand.

Refer to the Fish and Game website for further information.
MIKE McVICKER Rotorua

Northland Age 23/10/18
NO DIFFERENCE
Re article in Dominion Post October17, ‘Tamihere urges Maori for Maori'.

Tamihere wants Maori to have their own health system, and says it's a breach of the Treaty of Waitangi.

Nowhere in the Treaty says Maori have special rights.

People who line themselves up with the people who are called Maori are of European descent, which means they are not different than the rest of us.

No, they are not different.

Their physical bodies are exactly the same as all other human beings on the planet.

And no, they don't need a different health system because of the different culture.
It appears that they want someone who speaks their own language and will let them do what they want.

Separatism is not going to solve any problems, but that is the way things are beginning to look.

All humans, no matter what colour their skin or what belief system they adhere to, are all equal.

Once the separation starts it will seep into all aspects of life, and that will eventually cause many associated problems.
IAN BROUGHAM Wanganui

Bay of Plenty Times 23/10/18
KOHIMARAMA CONFERENCE
The 1860 Kohimarama Conference of chiefs from across New Zealand, including some from the Waikato, was one of the most significant meetings in our history.

The consensus was to send a strong and critical message for peace, with the first resolution being a unanimous pledge of loyalty to the Government.

Peter Dey (Letters, October 17) is quite mistaken, in my view, when he says the motion critical of the king movement was supported by only half the chiefs present. Almost all supported the motion. Only a few chiefs who were related to the Waikato people remained still, and neither approved nor disapproved of this resolution.

Similarly, only three chiefs expressed some dissent over a condemnation of Wiremu Kingi at Waitara as recorded in writing: "We agree to these Resolutions with the exception of one, which is not clear, and of which we therefore disapprove'

Condemnation of attacks on settlers was unanimous: That this Conference deprecates in the strongest manner the murders of unarmed Europeans committed by the Natives now fighting at Taranaki'

A group of Maori. led by Tiera, had demanded the protection of the Government and the right to sell their land.

Wiremu Kingi later joined by the king movement, had raised arms against the law, in rebellion against the Crown, to the dismay of most Maori.
JOHN ROBINSON Waikanae

Hawkes Bay Today 22/10/18
KEEPING LANGUAGES ALIVE
Scholars, poets and other aesthetics have always found beauty in their own language.

For the majority language is merely a method of communication.

As with anything else language depends on the survival of the fittest, its fitness for purpose and the efforts of those who wish to preserve it.

Many once-prominent languages, including Latin, Sanskrit and Coptic, are no longer spoken due to many reasons including colonisation and assimilation with other cultures.

Regrettable but inevitable.

If Maori wish to preserve the language then I wish them luck but they should do so using their own resources, not by coercing the rest of the nation to learn te reo.

I applaud anyone wishing to learn another language. But which language should be an individual choice.

Teresa Allen — I do not presume to represent any section of our community. My opinions are my own.
MURRAY CHRISTISON Napier

Nelson Mail 20/10/18
RACIAL ‘SIMPLICITIES’
Reading Joel Maxwell’s rants, I felt anger growing: these crude, generalised, insulting racial stereotypes, these crude groupings, these simplicities. Are there no ‘‘Maoris’’ in NZ First?

Are all MPs ( ‘‘Maoris’’ too) smoking, boozing hypocrites? Are all ‘‘Maoris’’ good, wise, spiritual victims of ‘‘Pakeha’’ ignorance and villainous exploitation? Do ‘‘Maori’’ gangs have nothing to do with targeting kids for marijuana and meth sales? Are all ‘‘Maori’’ pot smokers nice, controlled, upright folk, while ‘‘Pakeha’’ exploiters drink whiskey in their spa pools?

What is a ‘‘Maori’’ or ‘‘Pakeha ’’? Is Lydia Ko a ‘‘Pakeha ’’? My Iranian or Fijian-Indian friends?

Maxwell complains of selfsatisfaction, self-righteousness and a one-eyed view of society among ‘‘Pakeha’’. I suggest he ponder the nature of racism and his whole cultural heritage.
CHRIS BLACKMAN Richmond,

NZ Herald 16/10/18 
COASTAL CLAIMS
The Auckland Council was established to serve the people of Auckland. So now that 34 claims for customary marine title and/ or protected customary rights have been lodged for Auckland’s entire coastline, you’d think the council would be proactive in investigating each claim and representing the best interests of the public.

But no. The council’s “democracy services” unit employee, James Stephens, has recently written, “I wish to clarify that Auckland Council lodged notices of intention to appear as an interested person . . . neither opposing nor supporting the applications”.

And regarding the hundreds of other claims for New Zealand’s coastline, we are advised that, “The Attorney-General does not consider it is his role to oppose applications in the public interest . . . ”

Our governing bodies are very happy to take our money, pass dubious legislation, then leave the public very much high and dry. Public servants? Yeah nah.
FIONA MACKENZIE, Stanmore Bay.

Northland Age 16/10/18
AOTEAROA BY STEALTH
Have people noticed that Aotearoa is creeping more and more into the name of our country with Aotearoa New Zealand? Then it will be just Aotearoa.

The downgrading of New Zealand has already started. You have got it on postage stamps, our bank notes and many other things.

It has been pushed that Aotearoa is a Maori name, When Maori signed the Treaty in 1840 it was translated to Maori as Nu Tirani, and appeared solely as that.

The Moriori's history records that they left Rarotonga in a canoe called AO-TEA in the 12th century, and landed in New Zealand. It is clear that Aotearoa is derived from Aotea, which means 'the dawn,' and in some cases can be translated as 'white cloud'.

This is part of the Constitution Advisory Panel that wants to change the name of our country.

New Zealand was certainly not known to Maori as Aotearoa.

Even our Prime Minister says Aotearoa. If she doesn't know the name of our country she shouldn't be in Parliament, like many of the others in there.
IAN BROUGHAM Wanganui


AN OVERSIGHT?
Was it a mere oversight that Michael King, in his extensive history of New Zealand, made no mention of Queen Victoria's Royal Charter in 1840 or the 1860 Kohimarama Conference of Chiefs?

Or did he and the subsequent semi-official historians, like Orange and O'Malley, not consider that they were part of the early history of our country and so worthy of record?

Those events were very important at the time.

The Charter had made New Zealand a fully self-governing colony, and our founding document and the conference, the largest gathering of chiefs ever, had confirmed the Queen's sovereignty and concluded that the Tainui Kingites were in rebellion and deserved their lands being taken under national law and according to Maori custom.

Perhaps these facts conflicted too uncomfortably with the politically motivated alterations to the Treaty and the subsequent Waitangi Tribunal's approved settlement claims.
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa


OPINIONS AND FACTS
As the silly season approaches, for the benefit and enlightenment of all treatyists, apologists, and particularly separatists, here yet again is a factual Treaty history lesson.

There is only one legitimate treaty, viz Te Tiriti o Waitangi Maori language version, with a preamble and three Articles. A benign document we could all live with, plus one genuine final Hobson's English language draft (aka the Littlewood draft), which cross-translates perfectly with the signed Te Tiriti, whereas the bogus/false Freeman version does not.

There was no signed English Treaty, and Hobson himself stated the treaty signed at Waitangi on February 6, 1840, was the only treaty.

Professor Paul Moon's book on Governor Hobson (1998) states, "Hobson's accomplishments ... tended to be overshadowed by the Tiriti o Waitangi concluded with Maori representatives (52 Chiefs) in 1840 ... the Treaty later described as the founding document of the country was never intended by Hobson to endure as a fundamental domestic constitutional document after May 1840 by him proclaiming sovereignty over the whole country — it was these proclamations of Sovereignty (Acts of State) and not the Treaty ... that became the founding documents of formal British rule in New Zealand". le sovereignty.

The esteemed Sir Apirana Ngata said in the early 1920s, "the chiefs placed in the hands of the Queen of England the sovereignty and authority to make laws" — telling and potent stuff.

Once the Treaty was signed, it became redundant almost immediately, as sovereignty had been ceded by those chiefs who signed, British citizenship granted, and Maori land sale rules in place, so all three Articles were satisfied. As the coup de grace there is absolutely no reference to any Treaty principles, partnership or fisheries, forests, rivers, lakes, seabeds, moonbeams etc. in either Te Tiriti or the Littlewood draft.

Spurious hocus pocus political and judicial utterances post-Treaty, particularly in the past 40 years or so, made by 'learned' fools and craven politicians are pure, unadulterated fictions.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts.

No modern-day creative breaches of the Treaty terms are possible, as the Treaty promised nothing more than what was contained in the three Articles.

In fact the document was not a treaty, as it was not made between nations but simply an agreement between the Crown and a group of disparate warring Maori tribes represented by 52 chiefs at Waitangi, and eventually 542 signatories overall, who all ceded sovereignty.

However, in reality sovereignty was acquired by the Acts of State (May 1840), confirmed by Queen Victoria's Royal Charter of November 16, 1840.
ROB PATERSON, Matapihi

Dominion Post 15/10/18 
POLITICAL INFLUENCE 
Your editorial (Oct 9) suggests that, in marked difference to the US Supreme Court, our judiciary is shielded from party political influence. In fact, there are considerable similarities. 

Justices in the US Supreme Court are nominated by the president. Given the disagreements over how to interpret that centuries-old document, these are political appointments. 

In New Zealand, judicial appointments are made by the governor-general on the recommendation of the attorney-general. The decision is made by a politician, a member of the ruling party. 

The reason why a constitutional convention - that the attorney-general appears to act independently of party-political considerations - works is that most parties agree on the political bias of the court. 

Politicians have written the Treaty of Waitangi into law and allow the court to decide what that means. This procedure, which breaks the convention of separating the legislature from the judiciary, has resulted in the current situation where the Treaty has come to mean whatever the court decides - just like Humpty Dumpty. 

The Waitangi Tribunal and the courts have ruled that "the essence of the Treaty transcends the sum total of its written words and puts narrow or literal interpretation out of place". Understanding of the words has been replaced by a vague prescription that destroys the very essence of good law. 

We are different from the US mainly because we are allowing racial difference to be set into law. So long as the ruling parties are happy with this nonsense, there will be no political debate over the opinions of judges when they are appointed. 

But once some political party, with some clout, raises questions, there will be a fight over future nominations. 
JOHN ROBINSON, Waikanae 

The Press 15/10/18
FOUNDED BY SETTLERS
Credit where credit is due. Christchurch is a city founded and built by settlers of the Canterbury Association. There were fewer than 500 Maori in the whole of Canterbury when the pilgrims stepped ashore. In the first year 756 settlers arrived.

Local labour completed the Lyttelton tunnel in 1867.

Kenneth Cumberland wrote: ‘‘Bold young men drove sheep on to the vast grazing runs to found pastoral empires and land-owning dynasties. Out of the wealth from the squatters’ wool clips, and from wheat when the tussock was ploughed, grew a city of scholarship, grace and dignity.’’

Are people no longer allowed to have a heritage and sense of pride in that? This library is an intervention straight out of the decolonisationists’ handbook.
JOHN HURLEY, Upper Riccarton


LIBRARY NAME
We could call our Cathedral ‘George. Using the convoluted logic espoused by the spokeswoman to explain the label for our new library, I’m sure it could be justified, however tortuously. But we won’t, as we realise that language is a tool of communication; if the desired message is not received the language has failed.

This is already very obvious in reference to the ultra-expensive (so-called) artworks with which we are being assailed by the same, or at least sisterly, ‘experts’. You can be assured that long-suffering ratepayers are taking careful note of those elected representatives who are seen to be supporting this continuing arrogance and disdain.
TERRY DOLBY, Burwood

New Zealand Herald 15/10/18
PRESERVING LIFE
To infer doctors and specialists would deliberately not resuscitate a premature baby due to its skin colour or ethnicity is disgraceful.

Maori and Pacific Islanders have long experienced chronic medical conditions disproportionate to our European population: diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and kidney disease, for example. Diet, smoking and alcohol are factors affecting their health, not helped by many families in these ethnic groups having many children that keep them impoverished.

Complexity features in all resuscitation decisions, including quality of life and the risk of serious complications created as the result of a premature baby being saved. The cost to the health system of events such as stroke, seizure, and lung disease is great. It is right that medical professionals take a broad, holistic approach to the suitability of resuscitation.

With global warming, food scarcity and the fight for resources, we will need to exercise increased intelligence and thoughtfulness in approaches to the saving and preserving of life, like it or not. Government would do well to place emphasis on education, personal responsibility, and environmental protection in its policy development.
SAM CLEMENTS, Hauraki.

Northern Advocate 15/10/18
SHOCK FOR VISITORS TO WAIPOUA FOREST
First I was sad, then became mad, maybe furious. One of the joys of travelling north from Dargaville is to call into our national park, Walpoua Forest. A stunning place of beauty.

Add to that the joy of the exhibitions, panels, pictures, information maintained by us all through the Department of Conservation over so many years.

All gone. In the exhibition room several rows of second hand theatre seats without upholstery, just foam cushions which look as If they have come from a fire. The information counter and a good collection of souvenirs gone, now a stark cafe, locked. Six other vehicles pulled In while we were there, their occupants disgusted.
I understand that in settlement negotiations this complex was given to Te Roroa At the main road entrance to the park is a very expensive, flashy sign listing the assets of Te Roroa.

At a time when conservation and the value of our natural heritage is gaining such support this desperately needs to be part of that
ROBIN LIEFFERING, Onerahi

Otago Daily Times 13/10/18
WHAT ABOUT THE RIGHT?
WHEN Otago University law school lecturer Jacinta Ruru laments the lack of Maori lecturers, labelling it a ‘‘crisis’’ (ODT, 27.9.18) may I ask her to share a thought for, irrespective of race, those of us on the Right.

For decades now we have had to tolerate an increasingly leftwing agenda from not only the university, but from all the sectors of education — from government policy through to management, staff, teachers and to the hardLeft teachers union.
Prof Ruru’s grievance is legitimate given that Maori represent 15% of our population but only 6% of academia, whereas we on the Right numbered about 50% at the last elections and thus so much more deservedly need to be accommodated.
DAVE CROOKS, St Clair

Hawkes Bay Today 13/10/18
SALMON AND TROUT NOT THE REASON FOR NATURE FISH’S DECLINE
Is this a move by the Government to privatise fresh water fishing?

The Green Party is proposing a change to the fresh water fishing regulation that may lead to the privatisation of fresh water fishing, where control of the fishery is removed from Fish & Game and passed to DoC and local iwi under Treaty of Waitangi settlements. This is wider the guise of improved protection to native fish, i.e. "let's blame the trout and salmon for the widespread decline of native fish species".

Mature salmon and sea trout returning to spawn do not feed in fresh water.

They are not the dominant cause of the decline in native fish.

In the Tukituki River I noticed a big drop in native fish numbers in the late 1980s. Salmon and trout have been in New Zealand rivers for well over 100 years.

The decline in all fish started with the advent of intensive dairy farming, possible widespread use of nitrate fertiliser and the practice of some farmers of spreading the cow shed slurry back on the paddock. I'm aware there is little scientific study of this matter.

The intensive river beach raking by the Hawke's Bay Regional Council was identified by Fish & Game 20 years ago as a major threat to the Hawke's Bay fish habitat.

The Cawthron Institute identified seven native fish species in decline in the Hawke's Bay area (Cawthron Report 2968 page 7. By Robin Holmes).

Section 17 of the amendment if passed in its present form could lead to the privatisation of fresh water fishing.

This could lead to the average New Zealander being denied the right to fish for salmon or trout, as iwi would have full control of the fishery.

What's next? As this has been done with no consultation with Fish & Game or any angling clubs, we now see the whitebait fishery and the thar hunting may be under threat too.

Is the New Zealand public right to the sea fishing next under threat?
F NICHOL Waipukurau
Wanganui Chronicle 11/10/18
THINK AHEAD
Te reo is not going to get you a job. Keep it alive but not forced down people’s throats.

We all have our language and customs; we have students from all over the world who come to our country to learn English, as all business transactions are in English.

Today and tomorrow in technology is going so fast.

Learn something that will take you and your family into the future — sign language and lip reading, even. Not the old saying: “You are becoming too Pakeha-fied.”

Think ahead. Tomorrow is another land and a new future to look forward to. There is a whole wonderful world out there and the answer is simple — education and learning, plus respect for other people.
MARGARET HADDON, Castlecliff

Northland Age 11/10/18
NEXT TIME?
Sam Neil's television series on Cook's voyages would have been improved by omitting the racial overtones and ethnic selectivity.
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa


OUR VALUES
Your editorial of October 9 takes a swipe at Winsome's proposal that immigrants and refugees sign up to New Zealand's values as a condition of their residency. Essentially, your resistance to the proposal arises from the perceived absence of a concrete set of values held by New Zealanders.

You'd seek to include tikanga Maori, but acknowledge that not so many other New Zealanders would.

There are those who would demand that Christian values or principles be predominant. I would certainly be one of those.

But I have to acknowledge that, although Christian principles built the wonderful society we used to live in here, not to mention Western civilisation, most of this country's residents have jettisoned those principles now. We have, for example, jettisoned the sanctity of innocent life, and thousands of in-utero children are slaughtered every year in our public hospitals, with government funding. And this Labour/Green government intends to increase that number substantially. Presumably Winsome would want immigrants and refugees to sign up to that.

Anyway, we all understand where Winsome is coming from, and what he's trying, if perhaps clumsily, to achieve.

He and we have witnessed the absolute chaos that has befallen so many other Western countries where Muslim `refugees' have flooded in. They display a Muslim supremacy, and have no interest in adapting themselves to the values, culture, even the laws, of their host countries. Muslims forbid the consumption of alcohol, and that's why initial proposals include the recognition that alcohol consumption is lawful here.

Winsome is trying to prevent the inflow of Muslims, or at least ensure that incoming Muslims commit to "our values". We can all agree with that. Is there a better way of doing it?
LEO LEITCH, Bennydale

Herald on Sunday 7/10/18
TIME FOR TREATY STUPIDITY TO BE RELEGATED, HISTORY CORRECTED
Speaking as a native New Zealander, it was very brave of the Herald to publish Bryan Johnson’s letter to the editor (letters, HoS, September 30). I dare you to emblazon the same on the front page of the Herald and demand some action. Many New Zealand citizens have pushed for the Government to acknowledge our true founding document to no avail. It has been “hidden away” and “ignored” for far too long.

The pressure from the taxpayerfunded billion dollar “elite Maori sovereignty” and “corrupt Waitangi Tribunal” business. Time for history to be corrected and time for Treaty stupidity to be relegated to where it belongs.
NEIL DENBY, Matamata

Bay of Plenty Times 10/10/18
TREATY CLAIMS
Would you like to know the latest get rich quick scheme? A scheme with Government backing?

I think the Hauraki Collective and Marutuahu Collectives have hit the jackpot.

How it works is, the tribes make a claim to the Waitangi Tribunal all over the country in places that they have, in my view, no right to, but have all the most valuable real estate in New Zealand, like Auckland City and Tauranga.

There is no requirement to prove your claim. The Government then will sign a deal with you, as they did with the Hauraki Collective on August 2.

The tribes who have been claimed over will protest but the collectives have, it seems, the Crown backing and are under the protection of the minister, Andrew Little.

“We have been seeking the chance to have our case heard in court for over two years, but the Crown has continually blocked us from doing so,” said Ngati Whatua deputy chair Ngarimu Blair.

Last month Ngati Whatua lost its Supreme Court bid to have the unproven settlements with Marutuahu Collective declared invalid. Guess who is laughing all the way to the bank? 
PATRICK NICHOLAS Tauranga

Rotorua Daily Post 10/10/18
TROUT UNDER THREAT
For once I will have to disagree with the views of the veteran commentator CC McDowell (Letters, October 6)

Firstly, trout have been in New Zealand for more than 150 years, and are deemed to be a desirable 'naturalised' introduced species protected by law.

As to his point that trout are an introduced pest and have devastated the native fresh-water fish, he would be well aware that there have been many other reasons as to the decline in native fisheries, most of them as a result of human activity.

It is common knowledge for example that over the centuries Maori consumed vast quantities of koura and inanga at hui and tangi. Then in more recent years we have the ramifications of intensive agricultural land use downstream.

On the other hand, one must ask as to the benefits of trout fishing. Other than the obvious economic benefit, which the last national survey put at a figure of $400 million in 1991, fishing provides relaxation and exercise for people from all walks of life.

Fish &Game, which has managed the trout stocks nationally for over 50 years now, advise that it issues over 130,000 trout fishing licences each year.

Income from these licences has in the past been used to fight for clean water and protect the environment.

What is a pity in this case of the Government discreetly proposing an amendment to the Conservation Act, is that Fish and Game, which has been the guardians of trout stocks, has not even been consulted.

Interestingly enough, it is evident that iwi have been involved as the new bill will allow Treaty settlements to "override several important elements of the management regime". 
MIKE McVICKER Rotorua

Northland Age 9/0/18
A FAKE CLAIM
Here are the words of some Ngapuhi chiefs of great mana at the Kohimarama Conference in 1860 — the greatest assembly of chiefs ever.

Tamati Waka Nene: “I know no sovereign but the Queen, and I shall never know any other.”

Te Taurau: “I am from Ngapuhi . . . there [is] but one name upon earth — the Queen. Let us then rest under the [Queen’s] Government.”

Wi Te Tete “Let me have the last word! We have now become one people under the Queen.”

At the conclusion of the conference, on August 10, 1860, the following resolution was passed unanimously by the hundred or more chiefs there present:
That this conference takes cognisance of the fact that the several chiefs, members thereof, are pledged to each other to do nothing inconsistent with their declared recognition of the Queen’s sovereignty, and of the union of the two races, also to discountenance all proceedings tending to breach of the covenant here solemnly entered into by them.

We have the testimony too of Rev John Warren, who was present at Waitangi and later at Hokianga.

“There was a great deal of talk by the natives, principally on the subject of securing their proprietary right to the land, and their personal liberty. Everything else they were only too happy to yield to the Queen, as they said repeatedly, because they knew they could only be saved from the rule of other nations by sitting under the shadow of the Queen of England.

In my hearing they frequently remarked, ‘Let us be one people. We had the gospel from England, let us have the law from England.’ My impression at the time was that the natives perfectly understood that by signing the Treaty they became British subjects, and though I lived amongst them more than 15 years after the event, and often conversed with them on the subject, I never saw the slightest reason to change my opinion.”

Those Ngapuhi who deny today that sovereignty was ever ceded dishonour those honourable men, their kaumatua, their whakapapa and the pledges that they made.
BRUCE MOON, Nelson


SPURIOUS
Now that the time for the settlement of Ngapuhi claims is near, it is important that Treaty Claims Minister Andrew Little considers a very relevant issue.

Part of the Ngapuhi settlement depends on their claim, supported by the Waitangi Tribunal, that they never surrendered their tribal control by accepting the Queen’s sovereignty. This is clearly wrong, and the public need to be informed before many more millions of their dollars are paid out for these spurious claims.

This can only be done if a recalcitrant media permits publication. Is it too impertinent to ask how much utu Ngapuhi intend to pay to southern tribes for the thousands of their iwi Hongi Hika slaughtered in his pre-Treaty depredations?
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

NZ Listener 8/10/18
SHAKE IT ALL ABOUT
Of particular interest in the September 29 cover story (“All shook up”) were the date of initial arrival and subsequent colonisation by East Polynesians and the work of Lisa Matisoo-Smith at the Wairau Bar. It is important to note that there is not a shred of scientifically undisputed evidence of human activity anywhere in New Zealand before the late 13th century.

This, despite a variety of claims that Polynesians had colonised the country for over 2000 years. A Department of Conservation interpretation board on Somes Island makes this extraordinary claim, for example, and I have heard cultural guides at Rotorua stating these “facts” to visitors.

The layer of Kaharoa ash from the Tarawera eruption of 1314 offers clear evidence in this regard as no sign of human habitation exists below this extensive layer. Some historians, such as James Belich in Making Peoples, have supported theories that the first Polynesians settled on the beaches of Northland and left no traces of their existence for generations.

What is undeniable from the archaeological record is the destruction from the late 13th century of 33 species of birds including all moa and of about a third of the native forests throughout both islands.

An interesting topic not covered by the Listener pieces was at what point of isolation from their homelands did these East Polynesians become Māori.
RUSSELL GARBUTT (Clyde)


Each Tuesday, I eagerly await the arrival in my letter box of the latest Listener. Sally Blundell’s informative and excellent articles on Zealandia (“All shook up”, September 29) didn’t disappoint. The scientific confirmation of the continent of Zealandia is great to read, as is the story of early Polynesian settlement at Wairau Bar, now getting further deserved recognition.

However, I fail to see anything funny about portraying on the cover the great explorer, navigator, cartographer and captain in the Royal Navy, James Cook, as a fool, and telling us we have fooled ourselves. I think you completely miss the point: Cook was no fool and we are not fools – scientists continue to enlighten us about our place on planet Earth, just as Cook’s voyages did in the 18th century.

I am becoming increasingly disturbed that there seems to be a trend in the media and political classes to denigrate our New Zealand Pākehā heritage. This cover seems like a not-so-subtle example.
LUISA SHANNAHAN (Motueka)

Gisborne Herald 8/10/18
A LEGACY TO BE PROUD OF
One has to wonder where Gisborne District Council got the bankrupt idea to remove the statue of Captain Cook from Kaiti Hill in Gisborne.

As with any tourist to Gisborne, the first thing one does is to find Cook’s statue and take photos as I have done. The start of the history of modern New Zealand.

Why would one want to remove from public view the statue of one of the greatest navigators in the world, and a legacy left behind for which Gisborne can be proud of?

Because some Maori complained that they are victims of Cook and the colonisation that came afterwards is a weak excuse, as life expectancy for Maori around 1840 was 28 years and now is some 72 years. Thank you Captain Cook.

What we have in New Zealand is ethnic-based tribal politics which are rooted in the bankrupt idea that the good of politics or business is to funnel as much of the pie as possible into one’s tribe or circle with no regard for the public good. It stifles innovation and fractures the fabric of society.

Is Gisborne District Council part of the process?
MIKE LALLY, Te Puke


SOME POINTS OF INTEREST
A point of interest regarding Meng Foon’s statement on Radio NZ that the Cook monument on Titirangi was the “Crook Cook”. I believe that Gisborne Herald articles have explained that the monument was cast in Sydney and portrayed the actual features of Captain Cook, with a full explanation as to its donation to the people of Gisborne. Perhaps Meng needs to read these articles.

Also, in your paper of October 5, 2018, there is reference to “Tupaia’s Endeavour”. Surely this is an insult to Captain Cook, as I was under the understanding that it was Cook’s Endeavour. I am merely trying to get a correct account of all facts pertaining to this subject.
W. BROWN

Gisborne Herald 6/10/18
MAIN STREET FOR STATUE
The decision by Gisborne District Council to pull down the Cook statue and move it to the museum is racially wrong and will soon be exposed nationwide as biased, insulting and causing grief.

TV3 news stated the “Crook” Cook is termed this by those who are against the Cook statue being on Kaiti Hill.

According to The Gisborne Herald, the Cook statue has been identified as a definite replica of early engravings of James Cook, but the clothing is not correct.

Sam Neill’s excellent TV4 documentary Uncharted last Sunday night showed a portrait of Captain Cook painted by John Webber, the official painter on Cook’s third voyage. It too is similar to our statue, and Neill said this painting — held safely in a cabinet at Te Papa — belonged to Cook’s wife Elizabeth and came from her home. How indisputable is that in proving that this is what Cook looked like?

The decision by our council is very disrespectful to our nation.

I believe the two models of the Endeavour that were in the main street, as well as this Cook statue, should therefore now be in the middle of town — exposed for all to see in Gladstone Road.

After all, Murray Ball’s Footrot Flats as an icon gets pride of place in town . . . yet such an important part of our nation’s history is banished to the museum where few will see it.

The maximum exposure is in the main street, held high. Situated there the statue would be far more significant and pleasing to all visitors and locals on a daily basis.

So to the GDC, please be more considerate and understanding as many pleople I speak to say this is really insulting to our people and nation. Please reconsider, as we need a democratic decision that will beautify Gisborne and showcase it as the place it really is.
ALAIN JORION


PLAZA IS AN IDEAL SPACE FOR EQUAL CULTURAL OPPORTUNITY 
To the editor, and Gisborne District councillors,

The shaping of the brick, curved walkway to the Cook Plaza is both stunning and practical, effectively inviting people to enter the space where there is a magnificent view over the bay, shelter from the wind, and shade under the central, established pohutukawa tree.

Please leave this special brick walkway, and reinstate, on the wall, the plaque with original wording commemorating the Cook Bicentennary of 1969; and the Late Princess Diana remembrance plaque of 1983.

Why discard everything in this area that has been created as a memory in its own right?

There is already ample room for a bus layby alongside the plaza, especially if the bollards are moved back a little, and for group gatherings within the plaza. There is also an additional area of special focus planned for further up the hill, so it seems there is sufficient scope to meet all requirements.

With the focus of bicultural thinking and acknowledgement, there is opportunity for the Cook Plaza walkway to be regarded as a “shared pathway” to a “shared cultural learning experience”.

This is an ideal space for equal cultural opportunity, giving witness to the shared history and growth of our beautiful region in this country, where we are free to live in unity and peace.
BARBARA BOWIS

Gisborne Herald 5/10/18
COOK DESERVES HONOURS
I was born and raised in Gisborne and I am disappointed that the Cook statue is to be removed from Kaiti Hill after a rather biased debate.

Cook was criticised for killing several Maori, for example, but without mentioning that it was after he and his crew had been threatened, robbed and attacked.

Captain James Cook was a skilled, accomplished, resolute leader — a great rangatira — who took the Endeavour and her crew to uncharted waters; he deserves to be honoured.

It was also claimed that the colonialism that came after Cook was bad for Maori, yet Maori life expectancy has more than doubled and the Maori population has increased 10-fold since the time of the Treaty. Maori are flourishing because of the good that Europeans brought to New Zealand.

Maori have been conditioned to complain because it results in more Treaty payments; but the council has no excuse for removing the statue. You should be sure to get rid of them at the next election.
DR BARRIE DAVIS, Wellington

Waikato Times 6/10/18
COMPULSORY TE REO
Joel Maxwell (Waikato Times opinion pages, October 1) seems to have gone through a transmutation of consciousness that has brought about great change in how he delivers his opinion pieces in regard to Mahuru Maori.

His latest effort is less of a rant, delivering a "brown eye" to all Pakeha , as it is an introspective piece making him look like an artist searching for epiphany for himself, and thus to be effective in implanting a desire to understand the first language and culture of his ethnic being.

I for one like his new look. I blog poetry on Allpoetry and often converse with poets who blog in both English and the languages of their own ethnicity.

One such person made a comment on one of my poems in Hindi, also offering an English translation.

Feeling demeaned by my own lack of linguistic ability, I replied to her in my very imperfect te reo, fearing that at the very least I would muddle my subjects and predicates.

The Hindu lady poet replied that she did not know that language. I had told her it was the language of the NZ Maori people. She googled my te reo, and to my surprise, the translation was almost exactly what I had intended - to greet the lady, to acknowledge her name and tell her mine, and to invite her to see my list of poems.

Google slipped in "beautiful" before "lady", which I was not aware I had written, but I guess that is Google for you.

The point is that whatever te reo I have picked up has been because of the art of it, the achievement of it, not because some want to turn back time and make it compulsory.
DENNIS PENNEFATHER, Te Awamutu

Rotorua Daily Post 6/10/18
ANTHEM IN ENGLISH
I totally oppose Peter Williams' view on the national anthem, "English should be dropped from the national anthem". I think that it shouldn't because if you go back to 1840 when the Treaty was signed, we share a country and our language. So it is essential and fair to have both Maori and English in the song.
EMMA, 10 Rotorua

Bay of Plenty Times 6/10/18
NZ HISTORY
Was it a mere oversight that Michael King, in his extensive history of New Zealand, made no mention of Queen Victoria's Royal Charter in 1840 or the 1860 Kohimarama Conference of Chiefs, or did he and the subsequent semi-official historians, like Orange and O'Malley, not consider that they were part of the early history of our country and so worthy of record?

Those events were very important at the time.

The Charter had made New Zealand a fully self-governing colony and our Founding Document and the Conference, the largest gathering of chiefs ever, had confirmed the Queen's sovereignty and concluded that the Tainui Kingites were in rebellion and deserved their lands being taken under National Law and according to Maori custom.

Perhaps these facts conflicted too uncomfortably with the politically motivated alterations to the Treaty and the subsequent Waitangi Tribunal's approved settlement claims.
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa

Gisborne Herald 5/10/18
COOK DESERVES HONOURS
I was born and raised in Gisborne and I am disappointed that the Cook statue is to be removed from Kaiti Hill after a rather biased debate.

Cook was criticised for killing several Maori, for example, but without mentioning that it was after he and his crew had been threatened, robbed and attacked.

Captain James Cook was a skilled, accomplished, resolute leader — a great rangatira — who took the Endeavour and her crew to uncharted waters; he deserves to be honoured.

It was also claimed that the colonialism that came after Cook was bad for Maori, yet Maori life expectancy has more than doubled and the Maori population has increased 10-fold since the time of the Treaty. Maori are flourishing because of the good that Europeans brought to New Zealand.

Maori have been conditioned to complain because it results in more Treaty payments; but the council has no excuse for removing the statue. You should be sure to get rid of them at the next election.
DR BARRIE DAVIS, Wellington

Hawkes Bay Today 510/18
NOT COMPULSORY
While I understand and support Maori wishes to preserve their language I am utterly opposed to any move to impose the language on all New Zealanders.

Most efforts to do so appear to be generated by Maori with very little obvious opposition from non-Maori who, like myself, will immediately be accused of racism. Racism has nothing to do with it.

Hundreds of millions are already being spent to preserve the language which has no relevance outside the Maori world. The education budget is not limitless.

English is, and always will be, the main language of New Zealand
MURRAY CHRISTISON Napier


CAN'T REWRITE HISTORY
I note with some scepticism that Gisborne will remove the statue of Captain Cook, an historical landmark. The iwi apparently are happy, so a report states. Really?


Reminded me of the removal of the Cecil Rhodes statue at the University of Cape Town in South Africa. Ironically the cheerleader of the Remove Rhodes, like many New Zealanders, was a recipient of a Rhodes Scholarship at Oxford. As far as I know, he justifiably forfeited the scholarship.

Why can't people accept history? Embrace it and move on, Captain Cook is very much part of New Zealands history, right or wrong.
ANDRE VAN DER ZWAN Taradale

Gisborne Herald 4/10/18
PUBLIC DENIED OUR SAY
I wholeheartedly agree with Karen Morrow (October 2 letter). I too was of the understanding that we lived in a democratic society. Well, I must be mistaken as it appears the council has all the say and we the people don’t have any.

I disagree with the removal of the Captain Cook statue. Yes, it may well be a sacred mountain to the Maori of our community but what about the Pakeha, don’t we count? It is history on both our sides.

As for the bridge, why was this not discussed before the work began? Some people didn’t even know about it in our community as they don’t get newspapers.

The name change — again, not public consultation, the council found wanting.

The list goes on. Yes, we elect these people to act on our behalf, expecting some public consultation in major matters.

I certainly will not be voting these people in again. I feel they are there to blow their own trumpets, and not there for the people of our city.
WENDY WILLIAMS

Gisborne Herald 3/10/18
WHY DESTROY LOCAL HISTORY?
I was appalled to see an online article from my hometown Gisborne regarding the removal of the statue and proposed destruction of the lovely brickwork on top of Kaiti Hill. Both have been there a long time.

Who made the decision for removal and was it made with a Gisborne vote? Or was it done by a few loud voices with the usual non-opposition from the local population? I suspect the latter.

Perhaps the minority of local Maori who oppose the statue may like to erect their own statue next to Captain Cook; wouldn’t this be more balanced, logical and cost-effective?

Why destroy something that is now historical to Gisborne? It does after all overlook the first sighting of Young Nicks Head, and so a statue acknowledging this is a good thing.

Let’s not let the voices of a few destroy what I feel is now part of Gisborne history.
As for the lovely curved brickwork; we should remember those locals who built it — there is history there as well.

For goodness sake, where are your voices Gisborne people? It is OK to voice an opinion and it is both shameful and disappointing that you do not do so.
MARGARET LINTON (NEE PALEY), Myanmar

Gisborne Herald 2/10/18
WE SHOULD HAVE HAD A VOTE
To the Mayor and councillors who voted for the name change, you all have lost my vote. I am so disappointed and angry that the The New Zealand Geographic Board Nga Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa has confirmed the name of our bay will be changed. This should have been a referendum at the next elections; it is significant to all of us and there were a lot of mixed reactions to the proposal.

Where has democracy gone to now? I sure don’t see it here. Just important decisions taken out of our hands as per usual, like the new council building. I know there will be a lot of disappointed people because of this.
K.A. MORROW


ENOUGH IS ENOUGH, GDC
To the Mayor and council — the statue that represents Captain James Cook and the Cook Plaza which was created for the 1969 Bicentenary Commemoration of Cook’s arrival in New Zealand should remain where they are and be maintained. This is one of Gisborne’s points of difference, it is the reason our city is known around the world — tourists come here to follow in Cook’s footsteps.

High up on the cliffs at Whitby, England there is a New Zealand monument, as this is where the great navigator left on his voyage of discovery. Captain Cook represents the heritage of many of us, a heritage which we are very proud of.

There is plenty of room on Kaiti Hill for other stories to be told. Kaiti Hill belongs to all of us, we are all New Zealanders.
EMMA J. HARRIS

Northland Age 4/10/18
PATENT ABSURDITY
It seems that there was a recent case where a Hawke’s Bay Maori woman, convicted of stabbing her boyfriend seven times, had her prison sentence reduced by the female judge. This reduction of 30 per cent was for the alleged mitigating circumstance that the convicted woman suffered from “post-colonial trauma”.

Although her victim’s ethnicity wasn’t mentioned (and he survived all the stabbings), the alleged mitigation seems to hint that he was a white man. I merely surmise.

So here is the latest example of idiotic political correctness, combining racism and feminism. It is now very likely that this sentence will be a precedent, copied in practically every sentence for a convicted Maori (and most likely convicted Pasifika too), whether the crime be of violence, dishonesty, negligence, or general disregard of the law and of civilisation. It will be applied to both sexes, too.

As our present Government has announced its aim of greatly reducing the nation’s prison population, it looks as though the judiciary is now under orders to help achieve this goal, so our judges will seize on patent absurdities or any old excuse to further the government’s current agenda.

The fact that crime will not be adequately punished, or its victims given proper help, seems to be ignored by all branches of government — the legislative, the executive, and the judicial. Because the Far North has a very large percentage of Maori in its population, I am sure that all this is now coming to a courthouse near you, so you will have to report it.

Meanwhile, I am expecting some strong comments from the Sensible Sentencing Trust, as its head sherang, the admirable Garth McVicar, also happens to live in Hawkes Bay. He must be seething since the case I have stated.
H WESTFOLD, Mirimar

Bay of Plenty Times 4/10/18
MAORI LANGUAGE SHOULD BE TAUGHT AT HOME
I think Sir Apirana Ngata and Dr Paul Pomare believed that the first subject in order of priority in the school curriculum was English, the second-most important was English, the third-most important was English, and then arithmetic and other subjects.

English for the school and Maori for the home, marae etc.

Maori should be fluent in Maori and English. this is not the case. Why is this?

Fast forward to present day with politicians of all political persuasions spending vast sums of money promoting the Maori language.

Some politicians who have a political death wish are even talking of making the learning of Maori compulsory.

There was an article in the newspaper about a little boy who has a Chinese mother and a German father. That little boy is being taught by both of his parents' mother tongues' plus English. That should tell us something. (Abridged)
DAVID MEDHURST Otomoetai

Dominion Post 3/10/18
PART OF OUR EARLY HISTORY
Was it a mere oversight that Michael King, in his extensive history of New Zealand, made no mention of Queen Victoria's Royal Charter in 1840 or the 1860 Kohimarama Conference of Chiefs, or did he and the subsequent semi-official historians, like Claudia Orange and Vincent O'Malley, not consider that they were part of the early history of our country and so worthy of record?

Those events were very important at the time.

The Charter had made New Zealand a fully self-governing colony and our Founding Document and the Conference, the largest gathering of chiefs ever, had confirmed the Queen's sovereignty and concluded the Tainui Kingites were in rebellion and deserved their lands being taken under national law and according to Maori custom.

Perhaps these facts conflicted too uncomfortably with the politically motivated alterations to the Treaty and the subsequent Waitangi Tribunal's approved settlement claims.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

The Press 3/10/18 
NZ FIRST VALUES
As soon I hear the words ‘‘I am not being racist but ...’’ I know that the next sentence will be an attack on someone’s race or culture.

Seven per cent of the population voted for NZ First yet they seem to feel they have the right decide who will be a citizen our not. Listening to their MP, Clayton Mitchell, there is no reference to acknowledging the Treaty of Waitangi in his values but the importance of being able to drink alcohol is worth a mention.

I hope the Greens and Labour are proud of themselves letting this group become the leader of the pack.
TREVOR SENNITT, Avonhead

Bay of Plenty Times 2/10/18
TREATY CONFUSION
Mr Dey (Letters, September 26), again you are astray with your perception of history, in my view.

History is a factual portrayal of what happened at a particular time and not a contemporary exercise in wishful thinking.

Firstly, there was no promise in the Treaty document of protection of the language because in 1840 Maori was the Lingua Franca and there was no concept of it ever being under threat

Secondly, in 1819 when the first Maori/ English dictionary was published in Cambridge, England, one of the contributors was Ngapuhi chief Hongi Hika, who translated the word taonga' as that which is 'taken by the club', 'a prize of war', a material substance and not the latter-day reinterpretation as ethereal concepts like language and music.

That a legally astute people like the English would accept a meaning as vague as 'a treasure', without parameters being set on its meaning is grossly illogical. (Abridged)
BRYAN JOHNSON Omokoroa

Waikato Times 2/10/18
TEACHING OF NZ WARS
Here’s my ten cents’ worth regarding the debate on teaching the New Zealand Wars in secondary schools.

The New Zealand Wars (not the Land Wars) commenced on May 11, 1845, at Kororareka and concluded on February 14, 1872 at Mangaone (south of Waikaremona). The reasons for this 27-year period of civil warfare are complex and I am certainly no expert, even though I have read extensively on the subject (Cowan, Belich, Pugsley et al).

There is a tendency to regard these wars as ‘‘us’’ against ‘‘them’’ (Maori v Pakeha), but they were much more complicated than that.

For example, the summary execution of some 120 Hauhau prisoners following the January 1869 siege of Ngatapa was ordered by Major Ropata Wahawaha and carried out by the Ngati Porou Armed Constabulary under his command.

The wars were fought locally and certainly have historical significance for the Iwi involved.

While the Waikato War may be of interest to a student in Hamilton, it would have little or no relevance to a student in Dunedin.

I accordingly suggest that rather then being a national curriculum item, the New Zealand Wars just be taught as part of each secondary school’s local history.
MURRAY DEAR, Hamilton

Northland Age 2/10/18
LOOKING FURTHER
Looking further into our history, you will find Chief Justice Sir James Prendergast ruled the Treaty of Waitangi "a simple nullity" in 1877 his ruling has never been over-ruled.

The Royal Charter dated August 25, 1839, was issued under the, Great Seal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and gave sovereignty of New Zealand to Britain under the Law of Nations the Treaty, being an unauthorised document with instructions handed to Captain Hobson by Lord Normanby, the Secretary for Colonies.

It seems Normanby misunderstood that the 1839 Royal Charter had claimed sovereignty over New Zealand.

The Treaty was not issued under the Great Seal of the United Kingdom.

While New Zealand was under the dependency and laws of New South Wales from January 30, 1840, until the May 3, 1841, the Royal Charter dated November 16, 1840, again issued under the Great Seal of the United Kingdom, made New Zealand a British colony with its own Governor and constitution to form a government that set up our political, legal and justice systems under one flag and one law for all.
IAN BROUGHAM Wanganui


IGNORANCE DISPLAYED
Not only did Massey's Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas, transgress in the matter of free speech and her subsequent efforts to deflect the issue, but in her enthusiastic support of the Treaty she showed her ignorance of the histories of her homeland and New Zealand.

The Treaty only made New Zealand a dependency of the Colony of New South Wales, subject to its governance and legislation. It was not until May 3, 1840, that Queen Victoria's Royal Charter/ Letters Patent was issued that New Zealand became a self-governing colony with its own governor, parliament, constitution, judiciary, flag and one set of laws for all.

The Charter is now buried with a million other documents in the vaults of New Zealand Archives.

It is our true founding document, a fact that has been conveniently avoided or ignored by subsequent governments, the Maori elitists, many academics and our esteemed historians.

The Charter was officially gazetted in London on October 3, 1840.

Since the 1970s the Treaty and other official statutes have been revised or altered for political expediency and by immoderate legislation, but history cannot be revised.
BRYAN JOHNSON, Omokoroa

New Zealand Listener 1/10/18
EACH TUESDAY, I eagerly await the arrival in my letter box of the latest Listener. Sally Blundell’s informative and excellent articles on Zealandia (“All shook up”, September 29) didn’t disappoint.

The scientific confirmation of the continent of Zealandia is great to read, as is the story of early Polynesian settlement at Wairau Bar, now getting further deserved recognition.

However, I fail to see anything funny about portraying on the cover the great explorer, navigator, cartographer and captain in the Royal Navy, James Cook, as a fool, and telling us we have fooled ourselves. I think you completely miss the point: Cook was no fool and we are not fools – scientists continue to enlighten us about our place on planet Earth, just as Cook’s voyages did in the 18th century.

I am becoming increasingly disturbed that there seems to be a trend in the media and political classes to denigrate our New Zealand Pākehā heritage. This cover seems like a not-so-subtle example.
LUISA SHANNAHAN (Motueka)