I thought that the article in the NZ Herald this morning was a tongue in cheek write-up because it was a no-news day. Of course I am being cynical. That the Herald even bothered to publish his off the wall comments is extraordinary until I acknowledge that we live in a democracy and sometimes people having their say has a nasty undertone. I guess I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Now that the Herald even has John Key (our Prime Minister) amongst its critics, proves the point that maybe we should look at the newspaper in a slightly more kind light than the ‘granny Gerald’ label it has attracted from the also slightly left of centre readers.
The claim that Mr Fisher makes that all Maori are either in jail or on welfare is rubbish. He can’t add the up the official figures. I do not dispute the figures re the proportion of Maori in prison but he really should go back to school and relearn his maths.
He needs also to look beyond his narrow confines and get out there and see what Maori are achieving. He needs to go to our universities and other institutions of study and see how Maori are beginning to achieve and enter the workforce at higher levels. There is a way to go, but the will is there to make it happen.
I am not saying that Maori represent numbers in all levels of employment in the numbers they represent in the population, but they are on their way. I work with and come into contact with many Maori who would quite rightly take offense at Mr Fisher’s assertions. But then again, maybe they will see his utterings for what they really are--- the words of a bigot, claiming to have support of most ‘whites’ (using his terminology) and using downright inaccurate figures to make his point.
He completely ignores History and the ramifications of a people losing their land and all that entails. We cannot ignore history. I am satisfied that most New Zealanders want to put behind the wrongs of the past and to ‘move on,’ but we can’t so that without ‘bridging the gaps’ in our society. As more Maori share in an equal manner in all aspects of our nation’s wealth, the reasons for the ‘special treatment’ that Mr Fisher accuses Maori of receiving will remain.
The fact that he makes his wildly inaccurate, mathematically ridiculous claims is testament to his own bigotry and IGNORANCE. His claims to feel the ‘discomfort’ of the individuals ‘he speaks for’ is just another example of his misreading of where New Zealand is and where it is going. His utterances merely divide, not unite us as a nation. What does it say about ACT politicians? Do you want a future with that party, if they willingly accept donations from the like of Mr Fisher?