Nelson Residents Association


Maori Ward - Ian Baker

Maori ward unacceptable

Nelson Mail - 4 May 2012


OPINION: During my time with the Nelson City Council I have worked with five different councillors elected in their own right who identified as Maori. Jason Wawatai for one would be well remembered, but each has contributed to the benefit of Nelson.

I will generally support any candidate no matter what race or cultural background they may have if they share my belief that we serve for the benefit of all Nelson citizens regardless of their race or religion.

This principle was behind my moves as president of the Ethnic Council to ensure that it was known as the multi-ethnic council not the bi-ethnic council.

I am really disappointed to see comment that even if all Maori voters voted at the next local government election, the likelihood of a Maori councillor winning would be almost zero.

The reality is that if the candidate displays a policy that appeals to a majority of voters he or she will inevitably be successful regardless of his or her race, religion, colour or sex.

Nelson has a wide ethnic diversity and generally the main community of interest of new and existing citizens is simply to get on with improving their outcomes and enjoying the freedom and the equality of opportunity that exists for every citizen.

Suggestions that Maori have a unique but disconnected community of interest are really an argument for an unacceptable separation based on race.

In my view, the establishment of a race-based Maori ward in Nelson would be at odds with Article 2 of the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which requires equality, without any distinction based on race, colour, sex, language, religion or political opinion.

The principle of equality of representation, including one vote per person in New Zealand, is being constantly eroded.

It seems this ward proposal would give Maori voters two votes and consequently a greater than equal say on the spending of ratepayers' dollars. Perhaps Nelson could provide the starting point for New Zealand to abolish all the divisive racial-based systems and acknowledge, like the following preamble from the South African Constitution, that we are one people:

"We, the people of South Africa, recognise the injustices of the past; honour those who suffered for justice and freedom; respect those who have worked to build and develop our country; and believe that South Africa belongs to all who live in it, united in our diversity."

When I was a child, I believed like most New Zealanders that the Treaty of Waitangi guaranteed full equal rights for all of us. This view was proudly proclaimed to the rest of the world. Sadly, today the Treaty seems to be used to bring about the opposite.

A Maori ward will, despite claims otherwise, be expensive and involve more bureaucracy.

Nelson ratepayers already fund well over $100,000 a year for a Maori staff position.

The city has been very generous in the past in providing land for the marae and significant grants for developments on the marae, and a race-based ward would inevitably entail many more extra costs.

The council has for at least the last 10 years had regular dialogue with iwi and there is now a formal regular meeting where Maori have the opportunity to advise council on cultural matters, and on matters of concern, and every opportunity is being provided for iwi input into all council planning.

No other minorities receive such advantage.

I believe my position on this matter is, in itself, an example of our democracy where there is freedom of speech for all.

Obviously, I'll be voting against the Maori ward, and democracy justifies a strong overall vote against it.

The principle of one vote per person must be championed and strenuously defended whether it is here in Nelson, or throughout the whole of New Zealand or even Fiji, for that matter.

It is important that if you're uncomfortable with the proposed Maori ward that you send in your vote as the decision is only affected by votes actually cast. Please do vote.


Internet Comments:

Bobbie   #58   04:34 pm May 22 2012

Rangi# A question as this is the only place we can ask. You mentioned Jason Wawatai and how well you knew him, what happened to him when he resigned from NCC after he married his lovely wifeShar.Then he seemed to disappear is he still in politics?

native   #57   02:28 pm May 14 2012

@ atrout # 56: You have to be joking. Yes we are all human, we are genetically the same, hence we can, regardless of race, procreate. It is culture (language, values, beleif systems etc) that differentiates us from the apes and us from each other. If saying we are different is racist we obviously have a different understanding of the word. Where are you getting this stuff from?

atrout   #56   10:25 am May 14 2012

@native... your reply to Melvin was no doubt the most racist statement I've seen in this thread. If you are indeed relating culture to DNA then you are making an elementary blunder in suggesting that there is a genetic link to culture. Acculturation is hopefully not linked to genetics or else we can simply say that we may be driven by something totally beyond our control. Crime can be blamed on genes? Or creativity or a love for money?

native   #55   03:59 pm May 13 2012

@ Melvin # 54: Your comment doesn't really deserve a response, however...Of course we belong to the same species. But surely we are more than physical matter? Surely we are different than sheep and cows. Humans have culture, cultures differ, they have different values and belief systems....actually I can't be bothered typing, you are boring me.

Melvin   #54   06:51 pm May 12 2012

@native#53 - What's childish is thinking humans are different. We are all the same. Depending how close or far from the equator, our skin tone changes slightly due to the amount of the sun the people of a region get. Future Maori, having headed far South from the equator, will simply over time become white skinned too becuase of their migration away from the tropics. Like it or not biology will make us all the same again over time in this country. May as well accept we are all the same now and stop fighting that Maori are somehow different.

native   #53   02:29 pm May 09 2012

@Evans #52: 'So say all of US. Now we VOTE'. Oh like when the Geramns voted for the Nazi's. Just because you have the numbers doesn't make you position right. "supremacist- racist": I, and all Maori, have adopted many aspects of white culture. Now tell me, what of ours have you adopted? I suspect nothing, why, because you think your culture is superior. That Evans is what makes you a white supremist. 'So say all of US', my golly are you 7 years old?

evans   #52   01:03 pm May 09 2012

@ native, "Spouting the same rhetoric" haha, do you own at mirror, take a good look, all you accuse others of sits best with you, except it is you that is the "supremacist- racist". So say all of US. Now we VOTE.

native   #51   10:11 am May 09 2012

@Len #49: perhaps you shouldn't turn up at your marae with opinions like atrout and tell them they should be doing this or doing that...@atrout #50: lol..I note that you keep coming back, but unfortunately you keep spouting the same rhetoric: 'looking back to a past that never existed'. What you are essentially saying is, and I have read what you have written on other threads, is: 'you savages were nothing until we arrived'. Go away, do some reading, then report back and tell us all what 'your' society was like in the 1830s, then lets see who were savages.

You seem to think that I, or any one else who doesn't share your opinion, looks at things pessimistically. I get up I go to work, yes atrout I have a job, and it just so happens that following the media is part of it. I look forward to the coming day. And, I go to my marae regularly and there is no 'pervading unhappiness'. We, i.e. aunties, uncles, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th cousins laugh a lot, and sometimes at people like yourself. Yet, there is a tinge of sadness because people like yourself will never, ever, experience that. ( I know you will be back you can't help yourself, and I am already predicting your response)

atrout   #50   06:53 am May 09 2012

@ native & rangi.. you shouldn't be surprised if you guys (or is there just one of you?) are the last ones standing in most debates. Everyone else eventually shakes their heads and moves on to something more positive and enduring. Looking ahead with enthusiasm is such a better option than looking back to a past that never existed. @len.. while not Maori, my marae experiences seem to have been similar no matter what end of the country. No joy, no optimism just a pervading unhappiness.

Len   #49   05:25 pm May 08 2012

@native #46, my marae just holds people that try to make me feel bad and sad. I'm happy to leave them to it, but not to demand to be heard as my voice of Maori with any more rights than I have as an individual

native   #48   04:08 pm May 08 2012

@ Rangi: Looks like we are the last ones standing, ka whawhai tonu matou.

Rangi   #47   10:22 am May 08 2012

Len#43 - The point about oppression still remains. Well done to you for committing yourself to your marriage in such a way that your forego any right afforded to you by being Maori. However, I suggest you spend a bit of time on your Marae & around your hapu & iwi. Develop an empathy for modern Maori ambition & self awareness. The BNZ is predicting the Maori economy to make up something like 7% of GDP by 2020, Perhaps soon Maori too will be able to practice economic nepotism

native   #46   09:27 am May 08 2012

@ NZ Maori # 44: Where shall I begin? Lets start with 'NZ Maori'. The 'NZ' in your name speaks a thousands words. I suspect that if you live in Nelson you are not really from there. You are Maori, though I suspect you prefer to say 'part-Maori', and you have nothing to do with your iwi or hapu, or even the wider Maori community. You are a kiwi before you are Maori and you get embarassed when Maori speak up in the media. When you were a child your white friends in the first IV told you you were 'a good Maori' because you kept your head down. See the thing is NZ Maori, if you were actively engaged with your hapu or iwi or the wider Maori community you would realise that my views are actually shared by many Maori. I am not ranting as you call it, I am merely articulating an alternative history. Am I pushing your culture back? All I can say is, when was the last time you went to your marae?

native   #45   08:58 am May 08 2012

@ Fenton # 42: The point I am trying to make, and it seems quite simple to me, is that many white New Zealanders think the world they live in is the world everyone lives in. I am not sure whether this is arrogance or just a lack of insight and thought. It is quite easy for you, as the dominant culture to say look around the world, look what everybody else is doing. The situation in Ireland is the result of nearly 600 years of brutality. I have been to Ireland on numerous occasions Fenton and take it from me while the explicit violence has ceased Irish Catholics still exhibit the characteristics of a colonised people...actually Fenton, much like Maori.

NZ Maori   #44   07:32 pm May 07 2012

lol native your ranting and raving is possibly one of the funniest and also racist things I've heard in a while from someone actually being serious.

Why don't you stomp your foot just a little harder. Maybe then someone would give a crap about your backwards way of thinking. Boo hoo, maybe not.

If anything it's people like you pushing my culture back. Seeing yourself as a bullseye and victim is no way to live life. You already accept people ways of thinking, and consider the world white racists. Maybe if you opened your eyes and and ignore the 10% and started acting like a role model you might have something to contribute.

Len   #43   04:15 pm May 07 2012

@Rangi#40, glad you have given up arguing the oppression thing now that it's been explained. I don't know enough about the finer points of land for the cycleway so I won't comment on that. I'm Maori by the way, and my wife is not. We both have the same rights and I wouldn't have it any other way. All I see from some Maori trying to get extra rights is some families who can trace themselves back to the canoes trying to greedly get more money and influance than other tangata whenua, including my wife who was born on to this land

Fenton   #42   03:59 pm May 07 2012

@ native #41 Take a wider view. Look at Northern Ireland. The poms turned up there for a bit and then left, but stupidly thereafter generation after generation keep picking up the mantle of division from their forefathers. Where did it get them - nowhere. They only sorted it out when this current generation wised up and refused to take the baggage. They all decided to forget the past and just understood they were all born on the same little island and that they were actaully all the same.

native   #41   02:52 pm May 07 2012

@Fenton #38: thanks for your input, it was riveting. I would love to know what your other 'forward' thinking views are.

Rangi   #40   02:45 pm May 07 2012

Len#37 - Maori do have a set of rights available only to them which need assertion or else they will be lost to the majority. This is a form of socialism rather than democracy. To use your cycleway example, the Govt pushes this through despite protests from certain groups. Is it right that private land be appropriated for this without redress of some sort? Of course not. Capitalism insists that Maori be compensated for any foregone right, or alternatively, retain that right & all value associated.

Sundeish Patel#39 - In this context, oppression does not relate to unequal rights. It relates to the removal of rights without agreement or redress, this is the context & has nothing to do with "opionions" but a statement of fact, of which we are all aware.

Sundeish Patel   #39   01:35 pm May 07 2012

Hey Rangi 32, the ACT party members will always be a "unique & disconnected community of interest", they will alway be in the minority and never get voted in, however just cause they are not the same as the majority doesn't mean they are oppressed at all. Seems you have 'rights' and those not in the majority rather confused. Are Labour supporters "oppressed" at the moment, were National Party "oppressed" when Helen Clark was in power ? Unfortunately you are getting your concepts mixed up. Oppression relates only to unequal rights, not people with different opionions

Fenton   #38   01:20 pm May 07 2012

@ native #32 Forget the past and read John #25 comments and go foward not backward

Len   #37   01:18 pm May 07 2012

@ Rangi #35, you are missing the point of 'sameness' and democracy by trying to twist it. My daughter supports national cycleways. I don't. But the majority of New Zealanders had in a government that went for this national cycleways. I guess I'm not the same as most others, but it's completely laughable to say that I'm oppression in any way at all. I have the same rights as my daughter does - and if I didn't have the same rights as my daughter does, then and only then would that be oppression.

Pakeha   #36   01:00 pm May 07 2012

Though sad, Ian Barkers article and the majority of the comments don’t surprise me. I fear this motion will be defeated because of ignorance dressed up as standing up to racism. The arrogance in some of comments demonstrates that colonialism has gone nowhere and some people still try and impose their world view on others. I am Pakeha and speak only for myself. This issue isn’t about race it is about abiding by the Treaty of Waitangi which promised partnership and having a Maori ward is a step towards that.

Michael King once asked which culture, Maori or Pakeha, had primacy. He concluded that neither do they have equal status, and described Maori and Pakeha as siblings. The older sibling, Maori, deserves respect for their life experience and equally the younger sibling, Pakeha, also deserves respect. With this respect we can live together, in our own ways. So Maori can live as they wish however they need a voice at the table, Pakeha has a voice, Maori don’t. I voted yes to a Maori ward to give them my respect and to give them a voice.

Rangi   #35   11:54 am May 07 2012

Is this the same Ian Barker who didn't care enough about this issue to postpone his trip to Japan to cast his ballot?

The struggle for sameness will always be defined by the majority. There is no allowance for "unique & disconnected community of interests" (also known as "rights"). To pursue this sameness under the guise of "democracy" is not democracy at all - it's oppression.

Forget the immature, Swiss cheese idealism your article espouses, put the hard yards in and get a result we all can live with.

As a ratepayer, I feel like a poor car owner taking his car to the garage to be fixed only to get milked by the mechanic. You've had this issue long enough. GET A RESULT!!!

george   #34   10:47 am May 07 2012

Kia ora, I read with interest the story which states under Article 2 of the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which requires equality, without any distinction based on race, colour, sex, language, religion or political opinion. Its funny how people quote these types of articles and sometimes forgets the same sought of things which come out of articles of the Treaty of Waitangi which gives maori and the crown the same form of control. Did we just decide to forget the treaty again. A please don't tell me that this means nothing to Maori or NZ

sme   #33   07:48 pm May 06 2012

Well written Ian.

native   #32   12:49 pm May 06 2012

@Bob: you say 'It (the treaty) brought peace to the tribes, the war ended, something never mentioned by or indeed appreciated by those who do nothing but lavish scorn upon it'. Why is it that Maori are continually asked to be grateful for Europeans coming here and saving us yet Europeans forget why their ancestors left in the first place? Britain in the early 19th century was a cesspit, a bit like the slums of New Delhi or San Paulo. The first settlers were refugees. One should in fact ask who are the ones who ahould be grateful? I know where I would rather have been living in 1840.

native   #31   12:20 pm May 06 2012

@Nikki # 21: this is precisely the arrogance I have been talking about. Having taken the land and its resources the coloniser now believes it has the right to determine how Maori should think: 'you should be ashamed of yourself,; 'Why don't you speak proudly of Maori and their culture and heritage?'; 'it must be tough for Maori sometimes having to listen to people like yourself pushing their 'poor and dismal' plight. Maori culture & heritage is unique'. What do you know about being Maori Nikki? Have you walked in to a shop and had all eyes fixed on you because the customer service people automatically think you are going to steal? Unless you are part of the 'team' you don't know. I don't know what its like to give birth, I am a man. I would never presume to know the pain or the joy of child birth. What gives you the right to 'know' what it is to be Maori? Thats right, your belief in the 'superiority' of your culture tells you so. I am proud of my culture, but my culture is more than haka and poi. Maori have much to offer but is pretty hard demonstarting that when you are dealing with white supremists.

native   #30   11:45 am May 06 2012

@Bob #20: How will I feel when democracy goes against me? I am not too concerned Bob, its a fait accompli. Which ever way people argue against a Maori ward I know, and so do most other Maori(except the self proclaimed part-Maori), that racism is a contributing factor. new Zealanders don't like to hear this, it runs contrary to everthing they have been told they are: fair, hard working, democratic. No one is perfect but a don't anyone on this thread, if you asked them, could identify one negative aspect of New Zealand culture.

native   #29   11:39 am May 06 2012

@Bob # 20: While you are well read you need to take the next step in understanding how history works. History is a social construct ordered around certain assumptions and ideas. The 'history' you refer to was written in the context of a British colony trying to come to terms with its size, isolation, and most importantly, its place in the 'progress' of British civilisation. This kind of analysis is not taught in secondary schools, where most New Zealanders get their academic history. The history people in your age group were taught was overtly nationalistic. Thus,you constantly read on threads like this: 'Maori were killing each other', 'Europeans arrived and saved the day', 'Maori were given a treaty', 'if it wasn't for Europeans Maori would be extinct'. This history gave rise to ideas many New Zealanders now adhere to, i.e. 'Maori should be grateful for what they have', 'Maori should just get on with it...'. Maori were not always killing each other Bob. We had well established systems of conflict resolution. In fact, by 1840 tribes in Nelson/Marlborough had already established peace using our own practices. These arrangements only fell a part when the Land Court came to town. Bottom line Bob, we didn't you. Europeans, like yourself (I wont say all because Maori have many Pakeha allies)need to perpetuate nationalistic history to give themselves a sense of worth and belonging. Bob I suggest you look at some university study, perhaps around historiography, rather than commenting on threads like this.

Tom   #28   09:57 am May 06 2012

maori get two votes. everyone else gets one. that is racist pure and simple.

out2lunch   #27   09:55 am May 06 2012

well to answer your torrent of questions native, maori have the same opportunities if not more, than the average NZer. They have been spoon fed for the past few decades and the result is an inability to look after themselves/their own. Just look at their long list of entitlements across education and health. Their culture has changed from a warrior culture to a handout culture where everything must favour them or they will play the 'victim' or 'racist' card, which is well worn out and null. You are a classic example. If you dropped your highfalutin attitude you may start seeing life through a better lens.

atrout   #26   08:27 am May 06 2012

Thanks to Bob and Nikki for clarity and common sense. A contrast to the cherry picking of factoids by our 'native'. Now let's hope that a few more NCC and TDC Councilors reflect on their positions as representatives of what should be considered to be a fair society. We need better governance than we've been getting from them. Perhaps we need fewer Councilors and pay them a lot better to attract better candidates.

John   #25   08:27 am May 06 2012

This whole race thing is a farce. If want to play the ‘historical’ card then we are all the same, we all trace back to Africa. Back in the dawns of humanity for sure from Africa some went North, some Northeast and some Southeast, but hey, if we are going to do things based on the past then let’s do it entirely and say that we are all the same. The problem here in Aotearoa is that within Maori there is a minority groups of families who want to play the childish ‘we were here first’ card like kids do in a schoolyard playground. It’s sad because while the rest of the world of different peoples move forward toward together making everyone the same, like European passports and currency spanning many countries and races, Maori sadly throw up the race fence to ring-fence themselves away from everyone. While the rest of the world of different peoples move forward toward one person one vote democracies for their countries, to avoid families using historical influence like in Egypt and Syria, for some backward reason Maori want to regress to this state of affairs. The truth is as more and more folk in Aotearoa are breed part Maori the minority groups of families trying to drag us back to tribal based influence will simply be washed away. It’s just disappointing they don’t have the width of vision to see this earlier rather than later.

Mike   #24   07:47 am May 06 2012

Well said Nikki#21

BAM   #23   07:38 am May 06 2012

native #2 Yes, my ancestors did come to NZ and make it was it is. They bought livestock with them and they cleared land for farming. They irrigated the soil and they made their land profitable. They were also builders and built roads and bridges and buildings, commercial and residential. Well I guess that makes me - in your eyes - a white supremacist. Hmmm. Well, bugger it. I'm not apologizing for them. We ARE a better country for their efforts.

Ian in my opinion you hit the nail on the head. If you have the policies, people will vote for them, and I truly believe that if they are the right policies for a person, they don't care what ethnic background comes with them.

Neil.l   #22   02:49 am May 06 2012

Well as a "half cast" i can sit on the fence but all of whats said it correct& never be judged as racist .Well said Ian

Nikki   #21   06:12 pm May 05 2012

Native #19 - you should be ashamed of yourself. Stop keeping Maori as the downtrodden. Today they are not, and all New Zealanders have equal opportunity. The economy isn't perfect, and there's many who struggle..... but 'many' New Zealanders struggle, not just Maori. Segregating them doesn't help. Why don't you speak proudly of Maori and their culture and heritage? it must be tough for Maori sometimes having to listen to people like yourself pushing their 'poor and dismal' plight. Maori culture & heritage is unique, something to be proud of, however, implementing legislation that separates them from other New Zealanders is fundamentally wrong. They don't need hand-ups now, we are all equal. Believe it and say it, and it will be so.

Bob   #20   01:55 pm May 05 2012

Thank you Native #19 for your admiration, but no, I do not class myself as an intellectual, rather well read on our history. As for not understanding being Maori, you should really say part Maori and Native, be proud of your non-Maori part as well, after all, who changed New Zealand from a staying stone age primitive country into what it is now and it has to be said, with the aid of Maori too. Here's another bit of history for you. Europeans were coming here long before 1840 and in 1805, with European fire arms being obtained by Maori, lesser tribes now could go on the war path against stronger tribes for Utu, revenge. So from 1805 to 1840, the muskets wars raged with ethnic cleansing, massacres, land grabs and all the horrors on inter-tribal warfare. Yet one of the most important thing that came out for many tribes in 1840, was The Treaty. It brought peace to the tribes, the war ended, something never mentioned by or indeed appreciated by those who do nothing but lavish scorn upon it. As for being in my 50s, way too low, perhaps being older gives those of us who are, because probably of more experience in life, a wider outlook on life, sometimes called wisdom I suppose, so don't be ageist! I strongly suspect the vote will go against the motion, another slap in the face for the big heads on the council, so how will you feel now when democracy has not agreed with you?

native   #19   12:16 pm May 05 2012

@Bob #15 and @atrout #16: your arrogance is such that you presume to know what it is to be Maori. You are arrogant enough to say who and who isn't Maori based on blood quantum. Bob, a recent study has shown that Maori are 30% more likely to be charged for the same offences as pakeha. Thats based on statistics. Are the police racist? Come on Bob, or are you in your 50s. Now atrout, we have had this discussion before, stop trying to make yourself out to be something you are not i.e an intellectual.

evans   #18   12:14 pm May 05 2012

These individuals who drive the maori cause have a very simple agenda which is. 1- To use political correctness and stealth to slip into positions of influence. 2- To turn the public purse into a Maori industry. 3- To control the distribution of funds from this position.

For example, if you look at this whole fiasco taking place in Tasman, where for some reason, they have managed to get their hooks into some of our influential councillors at great cost to the region financially and race relations. The latest example of this saga is now the Nelson Arts Festival (where this should simply represent all the art of the region) now has to have a specific Maori component and the council has seen fit to employ a co-ordinator at our expense. Read related article "Nelson Arts Festival to Factor in Maori" on Until we all realise/understand what is going on here, this situation will never end.

native   #17   12:00 pm May 05 2012

@hmmmm#14, just answer the questions. Or perhaps you have but just don't want to admit it.

atrout   #16   09:57 am May 05 2012

Well reasoned and well written Ian. It takes a fair amount of courage to shrug off the accusations of being racist and to speak honestly as you have. It is a resounding pity that others among your NCC colleagues have not taken the time and found the strength to research Treaty issues and see that institutionalized racism is counter productive in terms of good societal outcomes. The relatively new concept of Treaty Partnership was never envisioned as part of the process in 1840. No form of separate status for Maori was ever seen as being intended or just. When the proponents of separate status for Maori claim that the Treaty have consistently let Maori down and that it has created the apparent disparities in health, crime and education, they conveniently ignore the fact that poor statistics come from social processes within socioeconomic groups and are self reinforcing. To blame the Crown and the Treaty are just too simplistic to be relevant. Perhaps the blame should be laid at the feet of individual politicians and other so-called leaders. It would be great to think that a few local body politicians such as Ian Barker might lead a movement back into rational and calm government free of built in racism.

Bob   #15   via mobile 09:29 am May 05 2012

Thank you Ian for what is a ray of sunshine in a continual fog perpetuated by out dated minds like Rangi, Native and certain like minded councilors. Native, there is the one sided Maori biasedWaitangi Tribunal, lowered pass marks in many subjects for Maori, grants hand outs etc. Perhaps the worst effects of a Maori activision is the effect of locking impressionabl young Maori minds in an out dated victim mentality. Perhaps if the likes of Harawira (Hatfield), Sykes (Irish Father) and all the other clever self serving activists ans replaced with modern positive role models that expell what great opportunities young Maori have, perhaps the ugly Maori crime statistics may alter. You say your sons are 30% more likely to be arrested than Pakeha, that is like saying the police are racist. Perhaps those coucillors pushing bi culturalism instead of multi culturalism might accept their part in this continuing saga of racial seperatism.

hmmmm   #14   08:12 am May 05 2012

@ native #1 So just put aside democracy, human rights and the views of anyone else, and then we can see things your way huh.

janie   #13   06:58 pm May 04 2012

Rangi#8: Re: your comment regarding Jason Wawatai you are so right he does play the "Maori" card and always has,to the point of using his real "maori" name and "Jason" whichever name suits the occasion.

janie   #12   06:04 pm May 04 2012

Jason Wawatai was remembered for many things in Nelson!! and was never backward in telling all that he would never have got or thought of going into council if it had not been for the people he was associated with or where he was working at the time.Larger than life person with a gift for the gab. No Moari should stand like everyone else and take there chances with the voters.

rayNelson   #11   05:17 pm May 04 2012

the early Europeans done their best to rid NZ of the Maoris, they'd be horrified that over 100 years on they're still around! Maori have being copping it since they arrived and nothings changed. They tried to make them pakehas to make them do what they want, that didn't work. Just because a hundred years have passed why do people think Maori aren't now what they were back then? does time make a whole culture go away? apparently not. Maori are Maori, that's it, Europeans interupted them, Europeans are the rude ones...

Kerin   #10   05:08 pm May 04 2012

Thank you, if more people like you had spoken out earlier I may not be now living in Brisbane,

Ash Wells   #9   05:01 pm May 04 2012

Bravo,Ian, you you have presented so well what the majority think but in this nonsensical PC world are afraid to say. At least someone is game to put the truth out there.

Rangi   #8   04:43 pm May 04 2012

The point is always missed. The ToW was between Maori and the Crown only. It has only ever been the Crown who have defaulted on treaty matters. It has only ever been the Crown who seeks to change things to suit them. Where did the introduction of NZ's parliament come into it at all??? How has Maori ever sought to alter the Treaty?

It is not the fault of Maori that issues of governance seem to have a racist falvour. Maori merely seek to uphold a Treaty they were forced into, which the Crown has abandoned.

FYI Jason Wawatai was a councillor over 20 years ago, I know him well & he is only "Maori" when it suits him. This is a totally reasonable approach given Nelson's attitude.

We have 200yrs of proof that British "democracy" fails Maori and advances Pakeha. Why would Maori seek to continue this if there are alternatives?

john No.1   #7   04:13 pm May 04 2012

BRAVO - Can Ian Barker PLEASE PLEASE replace Micky Mouse? - Is this the only Councillor who talks sense?

native   #6   03:44 pm May 04 2012

@ dea #4, sorry you lost me. I am not looking to blame others at all. Just because I question people's beliefs and opinions doesn't make me a victim. It seems to me though that people make comment about issues such as the Maori ward thinking that their position is in some way neutral. I merely framed those questions to highlight the fact that that is false. Many hold views that are underpinned by notions of white supremacy, but fail to recognise it. What I am saying is you don't have to call someone a n@gg#r to be racist. I doubt Don Brash or John Ansell have ever used that word but there is no doubt they believe in the superiorty of their culture and worldview.

Kate   #5   03:35 pm May 04 2012

Thank god. You shouldn't get a seat handed to you because your maori. You should become a counciller because the people of Nelson voted you in and belive you deserved a place.

I don't see any Burmese, Chinese, Italian people requsting a personal seat. And I couldn't give a crap if you were a Burmese, Chinese, Italian counciller. Just as long as you do your job and try and make Nelson a better place. When did being a counciller ever come down to the colour of your skin?

dea   #4   03:06 pm May 04 2012

@ Ian well said,@ native you are a racist. I answered your questions and you are looking to blame others. Do answer your questions honestly if you can ?

evans   #3   02:50 pm May 04 2012

Hear hear....My thinking and position precisely....

native   #2   02:10 pm May 04 2012

I have a challenge for people who are opposed to a Maori ward. Forget the 'one man one vote' stuff, forget the nice quotes from the declaration of human rights and the south african constitution, forget all the comments on the threads. Sit back and ask yourself: Did my ancestors come here and make this country what it is? Should Maori be grateful with what they have? Are Maori not succeeding because they are lazy? Are Maori unfairly advantaged? New Zealand is not a racist country?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, congratulations you are a white supremacist.

Nikki Romney   #1   01:41 pm May 04 2012

Absolutely fantastic! Well said Ian. Spoken from the heart, a simple & fair view of equality that is shared by many New Zealanders I would say. Couldn't have said it better myself. Thanks to The Nelson Mail for publishing this opinion piece. I'm going to frame it and also send a copy to John Key.