Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Roast Busters--- the events of the last year have shown up some very serious issues for New Zealand and the way we are bringing up our young people!

The publicity surrounding the events earlier in the year re the Roast Buster’ group of boys and the handling of it by the police points to a serious deficit in the way we are bringing up our young men in New Zealand. For many years, much has been said and a great deal of effort has gone into changing the ‘sub-culture’ in New Zealand that allows our young men to believe that women are targets, playthings to be cast aside by the criminal justice system when they have been very much wronged. The police say that they cannot process the Roast Buster group because of various factors, including the ‘lack of evidence,’ the unwillingness to put the victims through more trauma’ and the ‘age’ of the young men involved. This highlights a huge gap between public perception re the alleged crime and the ability and willingness of the police and courts to go ahead to bring resolution to what is alleged to haver happened. The real victims here are obvious. The young women will have learnt that ‘speaking up’ does not work in New Zealand and the young men are in danger of incorporating such behaviours into the way they interact with other women in the future. They have been sent a message from the ‘system’ that what they have alleged to have enacted is OK! Most New Zealanders say it is NOT OK! We rely on the justice system to protect us from pariahs and when that does not happen, then the mixed messages are strong and there is a danger that the ‘crime’ will be replicated in every town and city of NZ. I accept that the police have to operate within the law but this whole affair points out that there is an imbalance between the capability of the law to react in these situations and the rights of the ‘victims’ to receive justice. This cannot be swept under the carpet and one has a distinct impression that is this had been a group of young men from South Auckland’ the result would have been possibly different! It almost feels like the law prevails in different ways as to who you are where you come from. Connections may well have played a part here. I know others commenting would go way further in the expression s of how they feel about this. The issue of how we deal with sexual predators is one that will not and should not go away. Let’s bring it out into the open and call it for what it is—a heinous crime! www.authorneilcoleman.com