This Is Who We Really Are

Written By: - Date published: 1:05 pm, April 5th, 2019 - 146 comments
Categories: Anzac Day, Deep stuff, discrimination, history, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, war - Tags: , , , ,

 

Growing up, I always believed that Anzac Day was far more than a memorial service honouring the brave men that fought and died at Gallipoli.  Thanks to my Grandad, it encompassed a broader meaning – one of a shared vision, putting aside differences and coming together for the greater good.

He would say, of uniting with his Aussie ‘enemy’, “We stopped being bastards to each other and became brothers for a bit.

He’d laugh, fall silent and a look I could never quite define would settle in his eyes.  I think that look was a mix of fondness and grief.

I wonder how he’d feel today if he saw the news that the RSA have had to scrap plans for a Muslim cleric to share a prayer at the Porirua Anzac Day service due to frightening threats.

I’d like to think he’d be appalled, that he’d speak up and tell everyone to stop being bastards for a bit but I’m not so sure he would.  It seems this intolerance we have is so very deep, that it writes to our core in some primal way. And I understand why that is;  I just don’t know why we haven’t gotten our shit together yet and what it’s going to take to tip the scales because fifty lives don’t seem to be enough.

I wonder if any of the gutless arseholes who who made the threats realise what an act of tolerance it is for a Muslim to prayer at an Anzac Day service?  Do they get that they’re strapping our lives to weaponised history as they cling to the skirts of their Islamophobia?

And this is who we really are – mostly immigrants ourselves, who choose to embrace our past, our grievances, our “rights” to a bit of stolen dirt and yeah, you can come inside but don’t you dare get comfy.

It’s time to make a choice.  We either move forward as a multicultural country and stop being selfish bastards or we tear ourselves limb from limb in blind ignorance.  

146 comments on “This Is Who We Really Are”

  1. Darien Fenton 1

    Thank you. Beautifully said. I am over selfish bastards and I thought (wrongly) we had turned a corner. Keep hope alive.

    • Maggie 1.1

      I think we saw the corner but have yet to walk it. I have faith in NZ, I know we can do this but it will require many voices and a constant reminder to check ourselves. Thank you for your comment Darien.

  2. greywarshark 2

    Vietnam veteran Dave Brown, a former manager of the nearby Porirua RSA, emailed the Titahi Bay branch protesting against its initial decision to invite Newlands Mosque imam Mohamed Zewada to say a prayer at its dawn service on Titahi Bay Beach.

    “What took place in Christchurch was shocking and we all agree that it was completely out of order in every way,” Brown said.

    “I believe that the appropriate measures have been taken to recognise that and to show the Muslim community that they are part of us and we are part of them.

    This comment from Mr Brown shows what a lot of dunderheads many NZ soldiers are – they haven’t thought about their experiences or learned anything from them. This despite the sacrifices made by so many veterans, who were not able to return home, or came back injured.

    Why do I say that Mr Brown is a disgrace and a fool? Because the Vietnam soldiers themselves when they returned home were refused full acknowledgment by 1st and 2nd World War veterans. They were not able in some locations to parade on Anzac Day with the older men and women veterans.

    Here’s a report of how it was:
    In Christchurch, in April 1971, 6000 turned out to deliver prime minister Keith Holyoake a simple message: “We want peace – now”.

    Holyoake had reluctantly followed the United States into the Vietnam War in 1965, initially committing a civilian surgical team, then a non-combatant team, then the military.
    Thirty-seven New Zealand military personnel and two civilians would die in the conflict.

    Many more would return home, shell-shocked or wounded. The effects of notorious defoliant Agent Orange would pass down a generation and the reception back home was less than welcoming.
    The men who had gone to fight, for honour or adventure, were labelled baby killers, rapists, and murderers.

    “You never mentioned that you were in Vietnam because you would be rubbished,” returned veteran Paddy Driver later recalled.
    [Paddy Driver was exposed to Agent Orange while in Vietnam.]
    “If you went to a party and said you had been in Vietnam, the next thing people would be hooking into you, calling you all sorts of killers and things like that. So you just didn’t say anything about that.”

    He had left Invercargill for war at the age of 18. When he returned, he went to the Returned and Services Association on his first night back and was told to leave.
    Driver – haunted, fresh from seeing death at close hand, and being exposed to Agent Orange – was told police would be called if he stayed.

    The World War II veterans who ran the place did not consider Vietnam a real war.

    Here’s Peter Arnett NZ celebrated war correspondent talking about how he was caught up in events in Vietnam (or nearly).
    https://natlib.govt.nz/schools/topics/5be4fbaffb002c6e45fc28ef/new-zealand-and-the-vietnam-war

    https://natlib.govt.nz/schools/topics/5be4fbaffb002c6e45fc28ef/new-zealand-and-the-vietnam-war

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10415627
    Dec 2006
    Too little, too late, for too few
    These are soldiers whose bonds were forged not just in conflict but by its aftermath – a battle for recognition which so far stretches 35 years. The Vietnam veterans were treated like pariahs when they came home to a post-60s society.

    Shunned by the RSA, they were ignored by the Government. Then, when debilitating illnesses and cancers began to show up, in the veterans and in their children and grandchildren, they were lied to about their exposure to Agent Orange, the defoliant laced with 2,4,5-T and dioxin, and other dioxin-contaminated herbicides. There were cover-ups, whitewashes and inaction.

    • Maggie 2.1

      Fantastic addition GWS, thank you so much.

      “I believe that the appropriate measures have been taken to recognise that and to show the Muslim community that they are part of us and we are part of them.”

      ^^That right there is…beyond words. To think that such a brutal event can be tidied up and packed away in a couple of weeks as though that’s going to fix anything. Does he think our Muslim community gets to go back to an ordinary life as though nothing happened? Imagine if we refused any more Anzac day services. Imagine if we said ‘We’ve already taken appropriate measures, recognised their service and now it’s time to call it a day’. Lest we forget… yeah right.

      • D'Esterre 2.1.1

        Maggie: “Imagine if we refused any more Anzac day services. Imagine if we said ‘We’ve already taken appropriate measures, recognised their service and now it’s time to call it a day’.”

        Well now. Given that, in this household, we’d prefer a simple memorial service for WW1 soldiers only (which will never happen), and given the jingoistic nationalism which has increasingly pervaded ANZAC day, we’d be quite pleased, were that to come about. A relative remarked today that, because WW1 soldiers are all dead, there’s little point in continuing with public commemorations. I’m inclined to the same view.

        I’m guessing that other people with close family connections to the Gallipoli troops may well feel the same way.

  3. D'Esterre 3

    My family has a direct connection to the disaster of Gallipoli. Three of my uncles fought there; two were killed. No recoverable remains: their names are on the NZ memorial there.

    In this household,the instantaneous reaction to having an imam at the Porirua ANZAC service was negative. Our view is that it ought solely to be for NZ and Australian soldiers who served in WW1.

    “And this is who we really are – mostly immigrants ourselves…”

    I’m not really sure what this has to do with anything in this post. Every last one of us is either an immigrant, or a descendant thereof. There have been Muslims here in NZ since the 19th century, but NOW people want them included in ANZAC day services?

    “We either move forward as a multicultural country…”

    There’s nothing a priori virtuous or normative about multiculturalism. It’s a necessary plank of neoliberal globalism, though: in order to accept globalism, people must be persuaded to accept multiculturalism.

    “…or we tear ourselves limb from limb in blind ignorance.”

    And this is the thing: we in NZ have so far been pretty good at not tearing ourselves – or each other – limb from limb. Unless, of course, we count our appalling record of domestic violence. Which is as much a problem among recent migrants as it is in the rest of our society.

    By dint of being a secular state, we’ve managed to avoid the sectarian violence which has plagued the ME. Christians have been persecuted out of that area over centuries, though the tempo of it has increased since the beginning of the 20th century. The Christian population there is now very low, compared with what it was.

    Another thing to reflect upon: since the beginning of the west’s insane invasions of ME countries in recent times, people here have been presented by the msm with propaganda regarding western motivations, the governments of ME countries, ISIS atrocities and the flood of refugees and migrants out of the area and into Europe. People have also seen reportage of Muslim attacks in Europe. It’s not surprising that they might be a bit sceptical, when our news media and sundry talking heads claim that Islam is a religion of peace.

    In my view, it’s much too soon to be lecturing other NZers about who and what they should be accepting.

    • WeTheBleeple 3.1

      Gee, let’s play that game, where we swap out religions and find them lacking.

      “Once a particular Christian sect or creed gained state backing religious violence increased. This took the form of persecuting adherents to rival Christian beliefs and other religions. In Europe during the Middle Ages Christian antisemitism increased and the Reformation lead to an increase in interdenominational violence. As with modern examples it is debated as to what extent these acts were religious as opposed to ethnic or political in nature.”

      “It’s not surprising that they might be a bit sceptical, when our news media and sundry talking heads claim that [Christianity] is a religion of peace.”

      “Hindu extremists killed nearly 100 impoverished Christians with iron rods, guns, axes, bicycle chains, swords, knives and fire, according to local non-government organizations (NGOs). The media records stories of dismemberment, men buried alive and attackers wearing a victim’s intestines like a garland. Mobs raped and molested a reported 40 women and girls, including the rape of a young Hindu dalit girl, because her uncle had converted to Christianity.

      “It’s not surprising that they might be a bit sceptical, when our news media and sundry talking heads claim that [Hinduism] is a religion of peace.”

      “In Southeast Asia, Thailand has had several prominent virulent Buddhist monastic calls for violence. In the 1970s, nationalist Buddhist monks like Phra Kittiwuttho argued that killing Communists did not violate any of the Buddhist precepts.[38] The militant side of Thai Buddhism became prominent again in 2004 when a Malay Muslim insurgency renewed in Thailand’s deep south. At first Buddhist monks ignored the conflict as they viewed it as political and not religious but eventually they adopted an “identity-formation”, as practical realities require deviations from religious ideals”

      “”It’s not surprising that they might be a bit sceptical, when our news media and sundry talking heads claim that [Buddhism] is a religion of peace.”

      “And this is the thing: we in NZ have so far been pretty good at not tearing ourselves – or each other – limb from limb. Unless, of course, we count our appalling record of domestic violence. Which is as much a problem among recent migrants as it is in the rest of our society.”

      Well that’s not accurate is it. Pull it out of your head?

      The (2013) NZ report ‘Toward Freedom From Violence’ shows 0.37 deaths from family violence per 100K for white kiwis, 1.5 for Pacific Islanders, 2.05 for Maori. All others were classified as asian* (0.88) and all (0.7).

      *nothing to see here, they all look the same to the National Govt.

      http://ethniccommunities.govt.nz//sites/default/files/files/Towards%20Freedom%20from%20Violence%20-%20NZ%20Family%20Violence%20Statistics%20Disaggregated%20by%20Ethnicity%20-%20Office%20of%20Ethnic%20Affairs%202013.pdf

      And why, might I ask, did you feel the need to bring this up?

      Here’s a quote from the above document to show how much we care about others:

      “The ethnicity of nine victims was unknown.”

      Ethnicity of perpetrators of family violence deaths in New Zealand, 2002 to 2008
      inclusive (N=209)

      Killed intimate partners:

      NZ Euro 33%, Maori 25%, Pacific 12%, Asian 11%, Other 1%.

      YOU WERE SAYING???

      • D'Esterre 3.1.1

        WeTheBleeple: “Gee, let’s play that game, where we swap out religions and find them lacking.”

        Good grief. This entire comment is a bit of a rant, no?

        You’re preaching to the converted, as it happens. In virtue of what would you assume that anyone here would think otherwise?

        However. In the context, it’s Islam that is of moment. Not Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity. Or any other religion.

        And the persecution by Muslims of Christians out of the ME is indisputable. There are no plaster saints among religious sects, unfortunately.

        • WeTheBleeple 3.1.1.1

          “And the persecution by Muslims of Christians out of the ME is indisputable. There are no plaster saints among religious sects, unfortunately.”

          Ah, thanks for clarifying, amazing how a little prod gets the truth out. You’d like to blame the Muslims for an Australian white supremacist terrorist attack against New Zealanders and NZ’s guests on NZ soil.

          ” In the context, it’s Islam that is of moment.”

          No, it is white terrorists and white racists we’re examining. Did you not get the memo?

          • D'Esterre 3.1.1.1.1

            WeTheBleeple: “You’d like to blame the Muslims for an Australian white supremacist terrorist attack against New Zealanders and NZ’s guests on NZ soil.”

            And here you are, attributing to me motivations I don’t have. Examine your own conscience: leave me out of it.

            “No, it is white terrorists and white racists we’re examining.”

            No. It isn’t. Take another look at the subject of this post: it is that to which I have responded, not to whatever is in your mind.

      • Maggie 3.1.2

        +100 WTB Thank you!

      • D'Esterre 3.1.3

        WeTheBleeple: “Well that’s not accurate is it. Pull it out of your head?”

        Shakti. No smoke without fire, qu’on dit. See this: https://womensrefuge.org.nz/get-help/migrant-and-refugee-women/

        I listen to the radio a good deal: always have. I recall years ago, hearing programmes about this organisation. So: domestic violence is an issue of moment among refugee and migrant women. Well: hold the bus. Regrettably, it’s part of the human condition. Which, of course, is why NZ law criminalises it.

        • maggieinnz 3.1.3.1

          Hasty conclusion and unreliable source D’Esterre

          Media is frequently biased and there most definitely can be smoke without fire.

          A better response would have been to point out that there’s likely to be an under-reporting of domestic abuse by (foreign born)Muslim women because 1) They’re raised in a culture that’s somewhat tolerant of spousal abuse and 2) They’re less trusting of government agencies, especially ones that aren’t guided by their own philosophies, and 3) They’re less inclined to speak of “private” home/marital matters.

          Because of those considerations we can safely infer that the rates of IPV are higher than reported for Muslims but can’t conclude that IPV is more problematic amongst Muslim communities.

          • D'Esterre 3.1.3.1.1

            Maggie: “unreliable source”

            Eh? You’re characterising Women’s Refuge as an unreliable source? That’ll come as a surprise to them.

            “Because of those considerations we can safely infer that the rates of IPV are higher than reported for Muslims but can’t conclude that IPV is more problematic amongst Muslim communities.”

            Say what? Are you saying that Muslim women are less likely to complain because they don’t mind getting the bash? People used to say that about PI women too, back in the day. It wasn’t true of them, either. I repeat: Shakti. It doesn’t exist just for decoration.

            • maggieinnz 3.1.3.1.1.1

              “Eh? You’re characterising Women’s Refuge as an unreliable source? That’ll come as a surprise to them.”

              You offered the page as proof that IPV is a big problem for Muslims yet it’s only informational support for migrant and refugee women so they know what our laws on IPV are. It in no way proves, disproves or quantifies rates of IPV. That makes the source unreliable for refuting statistical evidence already supplied to you.

              “Are you saying that Muslim women are less likely to complain because they don’t mind getting the bash?”

              Don’t be ridiculous. That would be like me suggesting your comment “it’s part of the human condition” means that domestic violence is a normal part of being human.

              “I repeat: Shakti. It doesn’t exist just for decoration.”

              Show me where I said Muslims don’t experience IPV. No one is disputing that but you’ve run out of arguments so you’re polarising comments instead. All that serves to do is make you look silly. By all means, continue.

    • Maggie 3.2

      “Our view is that it ought solely to be for NZ and Australian soldiers who served in WW1.”

      How does having a Muslim cleric praying at the service change who the service is for?

      “I’m not really sure what this has to do with anything in this post. Every last one of us is either an immigrant, or a descendant thereof.”

      It has everything to do with it. Even though Muslims have been here since the 19th century there are those who still treat them as outsiders as is evidenced by your comment. If you follow the links in the article you’ll see one explaining the endowment effect.

      There have been Muslims here in NZ since the 19th century, but NOW people want them included in ANZAC day services?”

      Yes, NOW. Why? because we’ve arrogantly and selfishly excluded them from our community for far too long. Why has it taken this long to include them? Why did 50 people have to die for us to ‘see’ them?

      “There’s nothing a priori virtuous or normative about multiculturalism.”

      Normative statements and the values we give them are constantly evolving. Multiculturism is now normative in New Zealand and has been for some time.

      “By dint of being a secular state, we’ve managed to avoid the sectarian violence which has plagued the ME. Christians have been persecuted out of that area over centuries, though the tempo of it has increased since the beginning of the 20th century. The Christian population there is now very low, compared with what it was.”

      Sectarian violence has plagued every religiously dominated country at some time or another. Some of the most extreme violence has been committed in the name of Christianity. Country after country invaded, its inhabitants slaughtered, women and children raped and/or enslaved. Then the proud white christian surveys his handiwork and says “it is good”. That is what religious intolerance does – it seeks to promote one over the other and justifies its brutalities by claiming an invisible being told them to do it. Hypocrisy and insanity at its finest.

      “Another thing to reflect upon: since the beginning of the west’s insane invasions of ME countries in recent times, people here have been presented by the msm with propaganda regarding western motivations, the governments of ME countries, ISIS atrocities and the flood of refugees and migrants out of the area and into Europe. People have also seen reportage of Muslim attacks in Europe. It’s not surprising that they might be a bit sceptical, when our news media and sundry talking heads claim that Islam is a religion of peace.”

      Yes, and the media has shown incredible bias in presenting Muslims as the leading threat to western safety when, in truth, that threat is homegrown and white.

      Terrorist attacks BY Muslims receive 357% more press attention – https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2928138

      Statistics on domestic terrorism in the US from January 2008 to the end of 2016:
      – 87% of terrorist perpetrators are American, 13% are foreign.
      – Of the 201 terror incidents between 2008-2016 only 3 perpetrators (or suspected perpetrators) came from countries listed in Trump’s travel ban.
      – There were 115 cases of terrorism by right-wing extremists, of which 35% were foiled.
      – There were 63 cases of Islamist domestic terrorism of which 76% were foiled, meaning no attack took place.
      – 65% of right-wing extremist terrorism involved fatalities, for a total of 79 deaths.
      – 13% of Islamist terrorism involved fatalities, for a total of 90 deaths.

      A Department of Homeland Security analysis likewise found that citizens of nations named in Trump’s travel ban are “rarely implicated in U.S.-based terrorism.”

      “In my view, it’s much too soon to be lecturing other NZers about who and what they should be accepting.”

      In my view, we’re 50 lives too late.
      Resistance to change is nothing more than the endowment effect and what is being asked of our community is nothing more than what we ask and expect of a child – to share their toys.
      Will it feel good? No, sharing is hard.
      Is that a good enough reason to expect others to accommodate their feelings and continue to exclude Muslims? No.

      It’s time to step up, shut up and do the right thing.

      • Cinny 3.2.1

        Maggie, just wanted to say, I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts and comments. 🙂

        • Maggie 3.2.1.1

          I really appreciate hearing that Cinny.

          Some of my favourite things about TS are that 90% of the comments and posters are intelligent and well thought out, debate is vigorous and productive. I’m learning so much by being able to look through another’s eyes.

      • D'Esterre 3.2.2

        Maggie: “How does having a Muslim cleric praying at the service change who the service is for?”

        My folks weren’t Muslim. It’d be downright weird, having a Muslim pray for them. I’m absolutely certain they would have taken a very dim view of it.

        “Even though Muslims have been here since the 19th century there are those who still treat them as outsiders…”

        Speak for yourself. How do you think I know about Muslims having been here for as long as they have?

        “…because we’ve arrogantly and selfishly excluded them from our community for far too long.”

        Again: speak for yourself. The inclusion of Islam in the ANZAC service is the subject of this post: nothing else. I’ve already expressed my distaste for what ANZAC Day has become. My folks were Christian: Islam had no relevance to them.

        “Multiculturism is now normative in New Zealand and has been for some time.”

        Did you read what I said? For good measure, here’s Angela Merkel on the subject, from a few years back:
        https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/angela-merkel-german-chancellor-says-multiculturalism-is-a-sham-a6773111.html%3famp

        Multiculturalism is a furphy. In NZ, we haven’t even been able to achieve biculturalism. Do you speak te reo? I don’t mean just a few words and phrases, but fluency. I learned it many years ago, but I’m guessing that I’d be among relatively few pakeha to have done so.

        History says that homogeneous societies work best. The next best thing is an integrated society, in which migrants adapt to prevailing customs and learn the common language. This is how post-WW2 migrants managed when they arrived here. It doesn’t mean that they gave up their language and aspects of their culture, but to a considerable extent, they adopted Kiwi ways as well.

        Interestingly, it is the problem of not having a common language which has thus far prevented India from phasing out English. There isn’t an alternative language acceptable to everyone.

        “…presenting Muslims as the leading threat to western safety when, in truth, that threat is homegrown and white.”

        It’s not clear what you’re referring to here. The ChCh shooting was carried out by an Australian. I’m not aware of any mass shootings, either here or in Australia, carried out by white supremacists (who tend to be all talk and no action). The attacks in Europe were by Muslims: they were homegrown, because the attackers were born in Europe.

        “A Department of Homeland Security analysis likewise found that citizens of nations named in Trump’s travel ban are “rarely implicated in U.S.-based terrorism.”

        Which is precisely the point I was making earlier: the msm has propagandised this issue, both here and elsewhere, such that ordinary citizens believe everything they see on the media. Also the point I was making: it’ll take a good while to change people’s perspectives. And it’ll take more honesty in reportage from the msm than I’ve seen thus far.

        “In my view, we’re 50 lives too late.”

        I remind you: he was an Australian, not a NZer. Surely the reaction nationwide tells you that white supremacist views haven’t taken root here to any extent? Be thankful for that. I sure am.

        • Ad 3.2.2.1

          “I’m not aware of any mass shootings, either here or in Australia, carried out by white supremacists (who tend to be all talk and no action).”

          Surely you mean “…of any other mass shootings…” ?

        • tabletennis 3.2.2.2

          +100 D’Esterre

          • WeTheBleeple 3.2.2.2.1

            Toilet tennis: see other wall.

            Toilet tennis: see other wall.

            Might take you a few sets to figure it out.

        • maggieinnz 3.2.2.3

          “My folks weren’t Muslim. It’d be downright weird, having a Muslim pray for them.”

          All things are weird when first introduced. Our brain is most comfortable with what it sees around us every day so it’s normal to be weirded out by something new but it would be wrong to refuse new things on the grounds of “weirdness”. In fact, it would be downright silly. What’s more, it’s arrogant and ignorant to assume that what you’re most comfortable ought to be the social norm for everyone.

          Also, your comment doesn’t answer my question: How does having a Muslim cleric praying at the service change who the service is for?

          “Speak for yourself. How do you think I know about Muslims having been here for as long as they have?”

          Knowing something as factual is not the same as respecting or understanding it.

          “The inclusion of Islam in the ANZAC service is the subject of this post: nothing else. I’ve already expressed my distaste for what ANZAC Day has become. My folks were Christian: Islam had no relevance to them.”

          Everything requires context for meaning. What I hear from you, repeatedly, is that your feelings and your family’s feelings are of primary concern. What is best for this country and it’s people don’t even feature. You’re entitled to feel however you want about the subject but expecting others to honour your feelings over everything else is selfish and juvenile.

          “Did you read what I said? For good measure, here’s Angela Merkel on the subject”

          LOL, so because she called their attempts at multiculturalism a “sham” then it doesn’t exist? You introduced the term, not me and now you’re saying it’s a lie/fake/non-existent thing?

          Let’s look at multiculturalism.
          The word multicultural, and multiculturalism itself, is a vague blanket term used to describe a variety of ways in which countries attempt to reconcile cultural differences with an eye to crafting a healthy society. In its most basic form, a multicultural society is one that incorporates ideas, beliefs or people from multiple different countries and cultural backgrounds. It isn’t dependent on success for meaning but does require an inclusive method rather than one of domination or assimilation.

          It is an entirely lacking term for the description of the principles, philosophy, methodology and goals employed by countries but as you introduced it I decided to continue with it because you clearly lack the ability to objectively comprehend the complexity of societal make-up and its needs outside of your own. You proved this with your comment regarding Te Reo as though being able to speak it fluently or not dictates an understanding, appreciation or acceptance of Maori culture.

          “History says that homogeneous societies work best. The next best thing is an integrated society, in which migrants adapt to prevailing customs and learn the common language. This is how post-WW2 migrants managed when they arrived here. It doesn’t mean that they gave up their language and aspects of their culture, but to a considerable extent, they adopted Kiwi ways as well.”

          There is so much wrong with this statement I’m wondering where to begin.
          I’ll try to keep it simple.

          “History says that homogeneous societies work best.”

          Define what “work best” means? What does success look like? If you were to measure “best” by peacefulness then yes, homogeneous societies can be more peaceful but you have to look at WHY they’re more peaceful and what that peace costs society in terms of development.

          Also, it’s worth noting that for homogeneity to be successful in society it must maintain strict authoritarian control and be physically and ideologically exclusive because any individual freedom of speech and thought might result in differing opinions which, in turn will be threatening to the beliefs held by that society.

          Homogeneous societies tend to have many values and beliefs in common. This is because they’re raised together in a homogeneous environment.

          For the human race, homogeneity is fatal; both physiologically and developmentally. In all of history it’s been proven that exposure to and the sharing of different information, systems, cultures and values promotes intelligence and creativity thus equipping societies with the tools and ability to solve problems.

          But, the benefits of diversity are paradoxical in that they can inhibit the free exchange of ideas, information due to intolerance. In an effort to keep the peace some sharing of information, culture, values and ideas is limited so then the benefits of diversity are negated.

          At the crux of this issue is the human himself, success or failure rests in his hands. Einstein says it so much better than I can:
          “A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”

          “The next best thing is an integrated society, in which migrants adapt to prevailing customs and learn the common language. This is how post-WW2 migrants managed when they arrived here. ”

          Both your multicultural models rely on assimilation with no concession from the dominant culture. That’s hugely hypocritical considering that the early Europeans who came to NZ didn’t make any attempt to integrate to Maori culture. Instead, they dominated and subjugated them, and made every attempt to erase their culture.

          “It doesn’t mean that they gave up their language and aspects of their culture, but to a considerable extent, they adopted Kiwi ways as well.”

          This rests on the premise that the dominant culture is superior and it absolutely does mean they have to give up parts of their culture. I agree that a common language is important for all but the only modification of their culture ought to be parts that conflict with our laws. In all other aspects we should afford them their cultural freedom, not as an act of charity but simply because by doing so we enrich our own lives, our own culture.

          “The ChCh shooting was carried out by an Australian. I’m not aware of any mass shootings, either here or in Australia, carried out by white supremacists”

          The chch shooter was a white supremacists neo nazi. The fact that he’s Australian makes no difference because we’re talking about European supremacy.

          “The attacks in Europe were by Muslims: they were homegrown, because the attackers were born in Europe.”

          And what does that have to do with anything. Did I say there were no home grown Muslim terrorists? No. The statistics and report I quoted were evidence of media bias, nothing more. If you want to debate the statistics in the report I offered then do so otherwise keep your red herrings to yourself.

          “I remind you: he was an Australian, not a NZer. Surely the reaction nationwide tells you that white supremacist views haven’t taken root here to any extent? Be thankful for that. I sure am.”

          Are you kidding? I think you’re severely out of touch with reality. The massacre was an extreme act of white supremacy, one we aren’t used to seeing but the disease that spawned his actions is rife in NZ. It’s insidious and worms its way into our every day lives through sentiments like those you’ve expressed.

          Perhaps you should google white supremacy in New Zealand.

          https://thespinoff.co.nz/society/21-03-2019/how-expressions-of-white-supremacy-seep-through-our-society/
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Zealand_National_Front
          https://www.radionz.co.nz/programmes/black-sheep/story/2018688225/the-story-of-white-supremacy

          I don’t know if you’re aware but your rhetoric smacks of supremacist ideology. The idea that somehow there is nothing to be gained or learned from other cultures is a major red flag then you focus on pointing out only Muslim terrorist statistics whilst ignoring the rest.

          It doesn’t matter whether we were mislead by the media and that’s why we hold false beliefs. The fact is that now we know they’re false and need to be ruthless in digging that shit out.

          It’s time to accept that the only reason we can reach the top fruit is because we climb on the backs of minorities.

    • joe90 3.3

      Our view is that it ought solely to be for NZ and Australian soldiers who served in WW1.

      Hundreds of thousands of Muslim soldiers were conscripted from colonial Africa and pre-partition India to fight along side allied forces in Europe. Can we not remember them, too?

      • Maggie 3.3.1

        Apparently not Joe. The thing is, if Muslims had said they didn’t want christian prayers at their memorial service there would have be a full-on meltdown. Head would have literally exploded with indignation.

        • D'Esterre 3.3.1.1

          Maggie: “The thing is, if Muslims had said they didn’t want christian prayers at their memorial service there would have be a full-on meltdown. Head would have literally exploded with indignation.”

          And you base this claim on….what exactly? It’s wildly implausible.

          • McFlock 3.3.1.1.1

            I wouldn’t be so sure about that. “Literally” would be a big call (rage-induced aneurisms notwithstanding), but, I suspect we are talking about the crowd who will bust a nut when Hone Harawira speaks but remain silent over HDuPA.

    • bastables 3.4

      I see we’re playing the Geneology/identity game. Well I’ve got my Great grandfathers and my Grand father’s medals from WW 1 and 2.

      I turn up to ANZAC day with my own operation medals, I’m also a Muslim.
      I really don’t see a problem with having anyone other than a Anglican give prayers during ANZAC day.

      Buddhist, Sikhs, Catholics, and Muslims have been part of the NZ army for a while now. It should be reflected in our commemorations now.

      • WeTheBleeple 3.4.1

        Right on point. Thank you.

      • maggieinnz 3.4.2

        Exactly Bastables. I have asked the question “How does having a Muslim pray at an Anzac service change who it is for” without response. I even emailed senior members of the RSA and asked them. Whilst I did get a response to my email they didn’t answer that question.

        • bastables 3.4.2.1

          It’s a dark idea D’estrre try’s to hide his Islamophobia behind too, this idea of ANZAC purity of NZ as it stood in the early 19th century. I mean should female soldiers provide catafalque parties? After all females were only allowed into the Infantry Corps early this century. Should Maori infantry soldiers be allowed to march and provide catafalque parties? Maori were not allowed into the infantry Corp in WW1 and could only serve as infantry in WW2 in racially seperate units. Why are they allowed to march during Anzac Day with infantry?

          Oh that’s right NZ is a progressive country and we and our army have changed reflecting that.

          • Poission 3.4.2.1.1

            What a load of shit.

            Te Rangi Hiroa was infuriated that the Maori could not fight.

            “Our ancestors were a warlike people … the members of this war party would be ashamed to face their people at the conclusion of the war if they were to be confined entirely to garrison duty and not be given an opportunity of proving their mettle at the front.”

            https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11432673

            https://nzhistory.govt.nz/files/styles/fullsize/public/maori-turks.jpg?itok=JjtadJif

            • bastables 3.4.2.1.1.1

              Dude you do know the Maori deployed in wwi not as a infantry battalion right? They were pioneers, not infantry.

              • Poission

                the status was irrelevant as they engaged in battle in the frontlines at gallopoli.

                Of 461 ordinary rank Maori contingent soldiers and 16 officers who fought at Gallipoli, only two officers and 132 men remained at the end.

                you do not understand the importance here is an extract from the great man of sciences Te Rangi Hiroa obituary.

                New York Herald Tribune”:

                Te Rangi Hiroa—such was the Maori name of a great man of science, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at Yale, Director of the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, who died in Hawaii on Sunday. Sir Peter Buck he was called in English. He would have always remained merely “Dr. Buck” but for the ironical fact that Polynesian blood bars even heads of American institutions from becoming naturalized citizens of the United States.

                At the recent 250th anniversary of Yale, Sir Peter was one of twenty-five scholars chosen for the accolade of an honorary degree—one recipient for each decade in the life of the university. He was selected to respond for the group and, as he said, having listened too much to a classical language that few present could understand, he proposed to continue in the same vein. Thereupon he switched from English to his native New Zealand tongue, soon bursting into a chant of Homeric power. For hundreds of listeners it will remain the most memorable event of the convocation.

                His books, such as Vikings of the Sunrise, an epic long ante-dating the history of trans-Atlantic voyaging, are familiar to countless laymen. Less widely known is his heroic role as a medical officer in the first world war. Ask a Maori, “Do you know Te Rangi Hiroa?” The reply may well be: “We were together at Gallipoli, where he won the – hearts of the pakeha (Europeans) and the Gurkha as firmly as he already held those of his own people.”

            • bastables 3.4.2.1.1.2

              Yeah they were not allowed as part of the infantry Corp, they served as a replacement contingent due to high losses and then were made to serve as pioneers as a racially seperate force. Why during ANZAC day do we have women and “other” races marching or present at all?

              Oh that’s right even during ww1 we were more progressive than the empire at large.

          • Anne 3.4.2.1.2

            I don’t know why people are being polite to this individual D’Esterre. He is not worth it.

          • maggieinnz 3.4.2.1.3

            He’s not hiding much at all. The more he talks the more he reveals.

            Your comment perfectly highlights his flawed reasoning.

          • mauī 3.4.2.1.4

            Anzac Day isn’t about showing how progressive NZ is though is it? If you want that go to various events on Waitangi Day that celebrate diversity.

            I thought Anzac was predominantly about catering to old/older veterans so they could remember their lost mates, and for their relatives to join in and pay their own respects. It’s steeped in tradition and patriotism and those values come before all else.

      • Ad 3.4.3

        +100 Bastables

  4. esoteric pineapples 4

    I’ve felt Anzac Day has been taking on a nationalist tone over the past few years, as it regains its popularity as a commemoration service. Almost like people who don’t like Waitangi Day because of its association with treaty issues, have decided Anzac Day is our national day.

    • D'Esterre 4.1

      Esoteric Pineapples: “I’ve felt Anzac Day has been taking on a nationalist tone over the past few years…”

      My view as well. That’s why I’d prefer that it return to its original purpose.

      Nationalism is what it is: not bad or good. But nevertheless I see it as inappropriate for the ANZAC service. That’s how we in this household feel about it.

      • aj 4.1.1

        In Australia ANZAC Day has been completely co-opted by the right side of politics and focuses almost totally on Gallipoli. You would almost think the rest of WW1 didn’t happen.

        https://independentaustralia.net/australia/australia-display/the-anzacs-ransacked-by-the-right,12128

        • D'Esterre 4.1.1.1

          AJ: “In Australia ANZAC Day has been completely co-opted by the right side of politics and focuses almost totally on Gallipoli. You would almost think the rest of WW1 didn’t happen.”

          Heh, indeed. They also ignore the NZ part of ANZAC. A relative there thought it should be renamed AAC day.

          A couple of years back, we were in Queensland for a family occasion. Our trip coincided with ANZAC day. I was cautioned by relatives not to be too outspoken about how the locals went about the ANZAC day events. I wasn’t entirely able to button my lip! Those Aussies: they can dish it out, but they sure can’t take it….

    • greywarshark 4.2

      In a way I feel that Anzac Day should be a bit nationalistic – for the reason that the dead soldiers did go as a national force. It seems that NZs don’t show a love of country in normal life; they know what they don’t like and get excited, as in 1080, but having better roads seems the only thing that get most going.
      So backward in our thinking are we, that it seems we have run out of momentum, and have fallen past 2000 and are showing signs of declining further.

      And for D’esterre to say that we shouldn’t have this or that at Anzac Day and it is for remembering WW1 I throw my hands up. Go on shoot me, you hardened, narrow person. All the people from NZ who have been to war to their detriment, and not much good come from that, have gone because we haven’t respected the WW1 lesson and never will now I guess. Or the WW2 one, Vietnam and the ones that we are forced to join in as part of The Coalitition of the Willing or something.

      When I went to Anzac I was going first for my dead birth father from WW2 of course, but second to pray for no more wars. Once I suggested that we inject some personal input, have a school read a poem, or someone give a short summary of a forgotten hero or heroine. That didn’t last long at the Civic Ceremony. Another time I asked those in charge to make sure they had a sound amplifier; it was bad enough that they repeated the same thing every year by rote, but that they didn’t even care if no-one could hear seemed insulting. We
      are a secular state, and that opens up our options to include anyone we wish, not to act like some narrow-minded sect. There are some I wouldn’t wish to be associated with, but the Muslim tradition is long and important with similar good intentions as Christianity.

      To honour this Muslim speaker would have been something of integrity. He is only here because of tensions that have arisen that inspired guerilla groups and terrorist acts and his homeland was no longer safe to be in. Heather Grimwood, I don’t understand your comment.
      Just as we have seen our P.M. lead a surge towards it [enlightenment], comes this reactionary behaviour towards a forward- thinking RSA leader.

      Is the RSA leader forward-thinking?
      Is reactionary behaviour being shown towards the leader?

      • D'Esterre 4.2.1

        Greywarshark: “In a way I feel that Anzac Day should be a bit nationalistic – for the reason that the dead soldiers did go as a national force.”

        Your view, and fair enough. Though I understand from older relatives that our soldiers were motivated more by allegiance to GB than to NZ. For that reason, I’d prefer ANZAC to be just a memorial services for the WW1 soldiers, as it originally was.

        “And for D’esterre to say that we shouldn’t have this or that at Anzac Day and it is for remembering WW1 I throw my hands up. Go on shoot me, you hardened, narrow person.”

        This my view. We don’t have to agree, you know. But there is really no need to get overwrought about it. There are many differing societal views on this issue, and we’d be bonkers not to listen to them.

        • Maggie 4.2.1.1

          “Though I understand from older relatives that our soldiers were motivated more by allegiance to GB than to NZ. For that reason, I’d prefer ANZAC to be just a memorial services for the WW1 soldiers, as it originally was.”

          Just not ALL WW1 soldiers right?

          And you never answered my question… How does having a Muslim praying at the service change who the service is for?

          I welcome differing views so long as they aren’t hit-and-run opinions that have no backbone.

          https://heterodoxacademy.org/

          “Constructive Disagreement occurs when people who don’t see eye-to-eye are committed to exploring an issue together, alive to their own fallibility and the limits of their knowledge — and open to learning something from others who see things differently than they do.

          When people lack the skill or the will to disagree constructively, disputes about theories, methods, data, analysis,or solutions can take on the character of zero-sum power struggles rather than opportunities for mutual growth and discovery. People become more polarized and closed-minded.

          They grow less likely to share and cooperate, and more likely to withhold key information, or engage in bad-faith for competitive advantage.

          Mistakes and failures are more likely to be weaponized against scholars rather than being understood as an unavoidable part of the iterative process of exploration, trial, error, discovery and revision that lies at the core of the scientific method.

          People grow less likely to take risks or tolerate uncertainty. Under these circumstances, increased diversity can become a liability — a source of additional paranoia and strife — rather than an asset.”

          • D'Esterre 4.2.1.1.1

            Maggie: “Just not ALL WW1 soldiers right?”

            No, of course not. All other combatants in WW1 have their own memorials.

            “And you never answered my question… How does having a Muslim praying at the service change who the service is for?”

            Yeah. I did.

            “I welcome differing views…”

            It looks to me as if you welcome just those views with which you agree.

            “..so long as they aren’t hit-and-run opinions that have no backbone.”

            I think I could gloss that as “opinions with which I disagree”.

            • maggieinnz 4.2.1.1.1.1

              You shouldn’t equate welcoming with agreeing. I’m passionate when I debate a topic and I won’t accept an opposing view if and until it’s made it’s case rationally. Saying things like “because it’s weird” isn’t a rational argument.

        • greywarshark 4.2.1.2

          So when all the old soldiers die who only cared about GB anyway according
          to you, then we will stop having Anzac Day.

          I consider all the money spent on new monuments for people who died or were wounded 100 years ago a disgraceful waste of money when there are other soldiers still alive hurt in other wars. We had perfectly good statues and inscribed walls and monuments etc. This spending has occurred because of a particular date which was an interesting as a milestone but also interesting was the wae remembrance of 100 years ago was more important than many children of our proud country who are homeless, and diseased with preventable debilitating maladies.

          If the RSA is only interested in glorifying ww1 then i won’t go to any more services or buy any more poppies.

          • D'Esterre 4.2.1.2.1

            greywarshark: “So when all the old soldiers die who only cared about GB anyway according to you, then we will stop having Anzac Day.”

            Did you actually read what I wrote? Seems not.

            “If the RSA is only interested in glorifying ww1 then i won’t go to any more services or buy any more poppies.”

            I’ve expressed my distaste for what ANZAC day has become, glorifying war in general. For that reason, I’d prefer a return to just the memorial to ANZAC soldiers.

            I don’t now go to ANZAC day services; nor do I buy poppies.

            • greywarshark 4.2.1.2.1.1

              What an irrational approach D’Esterre. Wars hang together, and the people who have suffered one, find companions in the next ones. They go together – war and injury and death and outrages (often). If you want to stop your concern at WW1 you should hop back into your TARDIS flying machine and go back in time.

              You cast yourself as having distaste for war. Fair enough, so do many of us. There are some called conscientious objectors who could see the harm that wars bring; Archibald Baxter was one. He was tied to a post near the front line. You may have suffered too, for your anti-war determination. Could you tell us how it has been for you, Have you been ostracised, abused?

              You don’t buy poppies that raise money to assist the Forces people who need extra help that the government has felt unable to assist with. That is not very compassionate to the living and damaged people today.
              So I shouldn’t say I won’t buy a poppy, that is abdicating responsibility to my injured fellow man and woman.

              We know wars have continued since WW1 and usually because of a lack of balance in the wants for resources by countries, being advancing wars, or with concern for themselves strategically, being defensive wars.
              (Russia says it has concerns that agreed buffer zones around it have been reneged by NATO setting up strike-mechanisms around it.)

              The wars have continued, we who have been on the winning side in NZ suffering little damage,and that has enabled people to have a good life, you included D’Esterre. So please have respect for those who have served you and all of us.

  5. Heather Grimwood 5

    I’m thinking that the age of enlightenment is seemingly a long way from being fulfilled. Just as we have seen our P.M. lead a surge towards it, comes this reactionary behaviour towards a forward- thinking RSA leader.
    I’m sure he has not the slightest intention of detracting from the mourning of lost relatives, but lost relatives belonged to both opposing armies, both pawns in the continual global greed for resources, be they minerals or land.
    As an attendee at Anzac Day events from early 1940’s when people were closely involved in the wellbeing of soldier relatives and the bereaved in the community, I agree with esoteric pineapples at 4, that nationalistic elements have grown more dominant.
    Later in the ’80’s at an RSA Anzac service in well-to-do area of Auckland , I wore a small peace badge, could not believe my ears at the sermon, and was astounded that the venerable clergyman concerned walked up to me afterwards and chided me roundly for wearing the badge.
    My point is that propaganda abounds in many ways.
    Another aspect that has worried me is that an Anzac day teaching unit is used with regularity in primary schools I’ve been in….much time taken up and too much glorification in my opinion. How refreshingly different the Weta Workshops’ production recently at Te Papa which should have a lasting home somewhere. I saw schoolchildren getting the message in stunned silence….wonderful to watch,
    In conclusion, I commend heartily the Crusaders’ management who are seemingly doing their part, albeit costly for them, to further progress of enlightenment.

    • D'Esterre 5.1

      Heather Grimwood: “Just as we have seen our P.M. lead a surge towards it…”

      I agree with the PM’s handling of the awful shootings’ aftermath, except for her wearing of the hijab. That was a serious misstep, in my view.

      This is a secular state: whatever its actual status, the hijab is seen by many as a symbol of Islam, therefore religious. It wasn’t appropriate for her – or any other non-Muslim woman – to wear it.

      “…comes this reactionary behaviour towards a forward- thinking RSA leader.”

      I suspect your man Strombom hadn’t thought this issue through. Returned services people tend to be older and fairly conservative. Not surprising that some reacted the way they did.

      As I said above, it’s much too soon to be lecturing people about what they ought to accept.

      • WeTheBleeple 5.1.1

        Those old conservatives are all about to kark it and if they’re the ones stirring this pot they wont be missed. Sure the potty old racist uncle is ‘hilarious’ at Hosking family functions but really, he’s pathetic.

      • Heather Grimwood 5.1.2

        To D’Esterre at 5.1: I wasn’t lecturing!…mourning if anything …. that enlightenment is such a slow progress.

        • D'Esterre 5.1.2.1

          Heather Grimwood: “I wasn’t lecturing!…”

          That comment wasn’t aimed at you, but at the original post. I simply repeated it. It is, however, vitally important not to lecture – or be seen to lecture – Joe Public about views that they have probably unreflectively held since forever. It’s not how to change hearts and minds.

          • Heather Grimwood 5.1.2.1.1

            To D’Esterre at 5.1.2.1: I apologise then, but thought it being directly after mine, it was in reply.
            I point out though that beliefs held ” unreflectively” have surely arrived through some sort of brainwashing, be it role modelling, actual teaching, or subliminal or hard propaganda…..certainly not from the reasoning of free thought, and critical response resulting.

            • D'Esterre 5.1.2.1.1.1

              Heather Grimwood: “beliefs held ” unreflectively” have surely arrived through some sort of brainwashing, be it role modelling, actual teaching, or subliminal or hard propaganda”

              I agree. People acquire beliefs from a multiplicity of sources, and those beliefs can be very resistant to change.

              “..not from the reasoning of free thought, and critical response resulting.”

              Nope. But – in fairness to most people – critical thinking depends upon having those skills, plus access to dissenting views and revisionist history. Nobody gets that from the msm, which is for most people the only source of the information which informs their beliefs.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 5.1.3

        I agree with the PM’s handling of the awful shootings’ aftermath, except for her wearing of the hijab. That was a serious misstep, in my view.

        That’s a valid view, but not my view, and obviously not the PM’s view.

        It’s a grey area, and Ardern’s gesture was not welcomed by some Muslims (for various reasons), but on balance it was a genuine and visible expression of support, IMO.

        But many have come to Ardern’s defence, with one person on Twitter saying she set an “unparalleled precedent of tolerance and co-existence by wearing [the] black scarf, to condole the bereaved Muslim families.”

        https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2019/03/christchurch-terror-attack-judith-collins-praises-jacinda-ardern-for-wearing-hijab.html

        https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-22/headscarves-in-solidarity-with-muslim-women-after-mosque-attack/10929734

        • D'Esterre 5.1.3.1

          Drowsy M Kram: “It’s a grey area, and Ardern’s gesture was not welcomed by some Muslims (for various reasons), but on balance it was a genuine and visible expression of support, IMO.”

          While for many NZers and Muslims, the hijab is a symbol of Islam, it’s also seen by many muslim women as a symbol of the oppression of females. This was noted by commentators at the time.

          The PM claims to be a feminist. What was she thinking? A well-intentioned gesture, no doubt, but the wrong thing to do nonetheless.

          • Drowsy M. Kram 5.1.3.1.1

            Appreciate your opinion D’Esterre – can we agree to disagree?

      • Maggie 5.1.4

        “I agree with the PM’s handling of the awful shootings’ aftermath, except for her wearing of the hijab. That was a serious misstep, in my view.

        This is a secular state: whatever its actual status, the hijab is seen by many as a symbol of Islam, therefore religious. It wasn’t appropriate for her – or any other non-Muslim woman – to wear it.”

        Jacinda wore a scarf out of respect. It’s exactly the same as many older customs we perform as a sign of respect – like taking a hat off inside. Your perspective slants the act as religious but even in doing that you’ve failed to acknowledge that the cross, a profoundly christian symbol, is frequently used as an adornment regardless of religious affiliation.

        You argumentum ad populum responses to this and other comments suggest your opinions are fixed in personal feelings and not rational judgement which is why we’re in this mess in the first place.

        • RedLogix 5.1.4.1

          To my understanding there are only three regulars here who have lived and worked for any length of time in the Middle East and experienced a core Islamic nation in the whole, PsychoMilt, Stuart Munro and myself. It’s no accident we share a common skepticism around this wholesale embrace of Islam we are seeing in this country.

          The left routinely openly mocks and demeans Christianity when it suits them, while anyone who dares express reservations about Islam is labelled an Islamophobe.

          The double standard is noted.

          • KJT 5.1.4.1.1

            Bollocks.

            Plenty of the “left” are critical of all, religions.

            The opiate of the masses, remember!

            Also have empathy for all people regardless of religion.

            The “left” however, unlike the “right” in the West, are not a bunch of group thinking, authoritarian followers.

            I’ve not worked in the middle east, but i have worked all my life with people from all over the world. Religious fanatics, of any stripe, are a rare breed.

            And Adern wearing the hijab, in this case, was a sign of caring towards a bunch of people who had just lost relatives and friends.
            Why the insistence, into reading anything more to it.

          • Stuart Munro. 5.1.4.1.2

            I’m afraid I don’t quite fit that description RL – I had great experiences teaching Muslim refugees here in NZ, so my inclination on encountering difficulties in Saudi was to ascribe them to the young monarchy, rather than the religion.

            I’m not sure either the religion or the monarchy can be blamed for the cheating I encountered however, and my friends who’ve taught at Otago med school tell me that they too ran across it. And the bureaucracy – black blood of the earth!

            • D'Esterre 5.1.4.1.2.1

              Stuart Munro: “…the cheating I encountered however, and my friends who’ve taught at Otago med school tell me that they too ran across it.”

              I’ve heard the same thing about Otago uni, and not from the med school. Anent the latter, though, a member of this household remarked that competition for entry is fierce, and cheating is part of the human condition. So: some students will do it if the pressures are great enough. Or it’s culturally unexceptionable.

              • Stuart Munro.

                I believe in the case of Saudi students it’s a bit of a cultural thing. If one has time of course, one can make assessments that can’t be gamed. My friend was saying that the attitude he encountered was along the lines of “We’ve paid a lot of money for this qualification, and so we expect to get it” – understandable from a customer perspective, but very much at odds with the traditional elite selecting trope of med schools. Just one of the perils of chasing foreign students for institutional income.

          • marty mars 5.1.4.1.3

            “… wholesale embrace of Islam we are seeing in this country.”

            What a joke. You’re mean spirited at least – i think we have been remembering the murdered Muslim New Zealanders – 50 women, men and children murdered by a white supremacist while they prayed. And to show respect to that community, to all affected kiwis, we as a country have made some small gestures to stand with our people. To show that we care.

          • The Al1en 5.1.4.1.4

            Make that four. I’ve spent plenty of time in Tunisia, Morocco and Hounslow. You aint so special.

            There’s much I don’t like about islam, equal to the shit I don’t like about about christianity and other religions – Don’t even get me started on jedis and scientologists. There’s no double standard here, I think you’re all nutbars.

            Wearing a scarf in a mosque is a mark of respect, akin to not wearing a bikini to midnight mass or demanding pork sausages and shrimp cocktails at a bar mitzvha. I applaud the humanity JA (and the nation) has shown, and even though on a higher philosophical plane I’d object out of reason, it’s nothing I wouldn’t have done myself as a committed non believer in any god,

            Red Logix, you seem to have devolved somewhat.
            You’re like, paul/ed, adam, morrisey and ure to me – Jokes, but not the funny kind.

          • Maggie 5.1.4.1.5

            There’s a clear difference Red, mocking isn’t fear based.

            I have no respect whatsoever for the Islamic faith. I find all religion repugnant. I simply refuse to treat someone as the enemy because he or she believes differently than me.
            Do you seriously consider wearing a headscarf out of respect as “embracing” a faith? Is affording someone the freedom to say a prayer embracing a faith?

            “no accident” – Doesn’t really explain why those that haven’t been have the same paranoia.

            I’m not naive Red, I know what to look out for. The problem is, because you expect it to happen everything will look like a sign.

            • RedLogix 5.1.4.1.5.1

              In hindsight the phrase ‘uncritical embrace’ would have conveyed my intention better.

              I have no respect whatsoever for the Islamic faith.

              Now try going to Saudi and saying that in public.

              (Without wearing the walking tent.)

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                I respect the right of theists to worship whatever deity/deities they ‘choose’, and acknowledge that religious faith and tenets can be of great comfort and encourage/enforce behavioural rectitude (Thou shalt not kill, etc.).

                My personal belief is that all religions (or at least those that incorporate a core belief in supernatural entities/processes) are human fictions.

                I know that I might be wrong, but that’s my (atheist) belief, and a very firm belief at that.

                One difference between theists and atheists (as groups) is that theist belief systems are quite diverse – different belief systems arose and continue to arise in different cultures and in different regions of the world. And even within particular regional cultures, religious belief systems are susceptible to internal splintering (why might that be?)

                Whereas atheists are atheists – our lack of faith may not define or unite us, but neither does it divide, or ‘other’ us (from other atheists.)

                From comments here, I’m picking up on an opinion that some types of (Christian) theism (Church of the East, Oriental Orthodoxy, Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, and Protestantism (Anabaptist (Amish, Hutterites, et al), Anglicanism, Calvinism, Counter-Reformation, Dissenters, Nonconformism, Lutheranism, Polish Brethren, Remonstrants, Presbyterianism, Evangelicalism, Liberalism, Pentecostalism – apologies to those left out!))), are somehow superior to other types, or at least better suited to NZ society (we don’t like change).

                That seems peculiar (to me), but an atheist would say that, wouldn’t they?

              • maggieinnz

                “Now try going to Saudi and saying that in public.”

                Why would I deliberately provoke them in their own country especially given their laws?

                Even here (NZ) I’m selective as to when and where I express my opinions. I speak fairly freely in environments where people have a choice to listen or not.

          • WeTheBleeple 5.1.4.1.6

            Go to the Southern States and declare your atheism. Jim-buck and billy-bob gonna want to skewer your ass. But you’re into this yourself aye, so the others are your enemy. They upset your sensibilities. Not christians – bad.

            Evil? You think?

            I’ve never had a Muslim at my doorstep pushing nonsense but the Christian’s are there about once a fortnight. Just to remind me we still have a large portion of public that require a placebo to sleep at night. Not long ago we still jailed homosexuals though there came a point even the cops thought it was stupid. Bashings were frequent. Christians having a good ole Friday night. How do you feel about queers, really, deep in your heart after reading ‘the good book’?

            If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. (Leviticus 20:13)

            Now you keep trying to point at countries as being barbaric, rather than the leadership. I do this unfairly with the states, there’s still plenty of good people but Trumpian history makes us think American = dumb redneck.

            There are many Muslim countries that are not extreme but they do not fit into white people’s bullshit – who point the finger at everyone but themselves.

            “The left” yes, all tarred with the same brush aye, they’re others too. Homos and blacks and wimmin! Uggh!

            “Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.” Titus 2: 3-5.

            “Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.” 1 Peter 2: 18.

            How epic is the bullshit in that book – it’s biblical!

            • RedLogix 5.1.4.1.6.1

              declare your atheism. Jim-buck and billy-bob gonna want to skewer your ass.

              Possibly if you make a noxious ass of yourself in some tough bar; but will you have the federal authorities on your case?

              The Bible is an collection of narratives from our past; no modern western nation makes Leviticus the basis of it’s legal system. Very few Christians or even Jews would advocate implementing it the context of a modern secular state. And many would be loud in their condemnation of any attempt to do.

              Leviticus belongs in the past; and using it to smear the modern Christian churches is a tatty trick lacking all originality. And believers everywhere are expected to passively absorb this disrespect for their faith without limit. Hell I find it tiresome and I’m not even a Christian.

              March 21 a Muslim bus driver kidnapped a bus load of 50 schoolchildren, removed the hammers to smash the windows, locked the doors, confiscated their phones (bar one fortunately), drove until the police stopped him, poured petrol into the bus and lit it. He fully intended to burn 50 schoolchildren alive.

              https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-47653500

              It was sheer bravery and fast police work that everyone survived, but the perpetrator’s failure to kill makes him no less a monster than our March 15 mass murder who succeeded in his evil plan.

              Now consider the responses to each of these very recent events; one has occasioned a mass collective guilt trip with demands that endemic racism must be rooted out, shamed and punished everywhere. The other …

              • WeTheBleeple

                You are completely missing the point. I was just throwing your reasoning back at you. You cite what one ‘side’ did, I cite what ‘the other’ did…

                Extremist nutbars LOVE Leviticus as inspiration/justification to be assholes; or (insert offending verse of ill-favored religion here).

                You make sweeping statements about how Christianity has moved on. I can reciprocate about Zoroastroism if you like…

                And it could escalate.

                Again. You are completely missing the point. Repeating centuries of the same foolish arguments, which we could bang on about for centuries more. At what point is it ok to say – fuck off with your grudges.

                History has got nothing to do with this terrorist attack except as a trove of excuses. History provided his ‘Leviticus moments’ of thinking in which he prattles on for 70ish pages trying to justify being a hateful self entitled murderous scum.

                • RedLogix

                  At what point is it ok to say – fuck off with your grudges.

                  Oh I don’t know; I’ve been saying that here since forever, but I keep getting told fuck off all the white man’s fault.

                  I can reciprocate about Zoroastroism if you like…

                  Actually almost all the Zoroastrians became Baha’is.

                  • WeTheBleeple

                    Many white men do need to address their holier than thou shit doesn’t stink attitudes though.

                    We have systemic institutionalised racism. Sure, some people of all persuasions hold racist views. In NZ however, a white majority has berated and belittled minorities for a long time. It does need to be challenged. Our court systems, media and even healthcare systems have been shown to hold cultural bias.

                    We can clean our own shit up. Leading by example is much better than trying to take some nonsensical high ground based on places and people elsewhere in time and space.

                    • Stuart Munro.

                      We do indeed need to clean up institutional racism. Going after ‘white guys’ in general however, will only lose the Left getting on for 40% of the vote. Example persuades, kvetching not so much.

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      Nobodies going after ‘white guys in general’. There will be over the top reactions as people work through the anger stage of grief.

                      The institutionalized racism in NZ is real. It enables ‘acceptance’ (by bullies) of casual racism – it also makes everyone who is not racist uncomfortable (the racists are already uncomfortable, feeling all oppressed in their own special way). Racism for headlines, for laughs, for bottom lines.

                      Some white guys are very defensive about ceding anything. And those guys, you know, the ones who can’t compromise or even try to see other views…

                      Not a good thing.

                      Extremists adopt religion to sanction extremism. Look out wherever they gain power. It doesn’t have to be religious extremism, however in many places religion is opportune.

                      Extreme capitalism… imperiled planet.

                      Any belief system will do if it’s built for the opportune.

                    • Stuart Munro.

                      “Nobody’s going after ‘white guys in general”.

                      Tell that to a guy who’s lost his job, in the aftermath of Key admitting half a million unskilled and often underpaid workers to the country for him to compete with. It will take twenty years or more for the labour market to recover, during which time he’ll be eating the bread of poverty and chewing on the rough end of the stick. If you top that off by trying to fit him up for racism you can expect to experience a bit of free range dentistry.

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      “Tell that to a guy who’s lost his job, in the aftermath of Key admitting half a million unskilled and often underpaid workers to the country for him to compete with. It will take twenty years or more for the labour market to recover, during which time he’ll be eating the bread of poverty and chewing on the rough end of the stick. If you top that off by trying to fit him up for racism you can expect to experience a bit of free range dentistry.”

                      Oh I see you are angry at imgrints and want to smash people in the face who call you racist.

                      Got it.

                    • Stuart Munro.

                      If you insist on middle class values, you need to provide middle class economic security. Where do you think Trump’s voters came from? But hey roll on Clark’s electoral suicide Mk II. Let’s all die in a ditch for something that won’t put an ounce of bread on anyone’s table.

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      You are coming across as a fearful angry white guy who thinks hes a total victim because the word racism has made it into the public narrative and keeps relating his concern back to migrants/politics/history/other scrambled stuff.

                      It’s not good. Go hang with some friends, get help.

                      Why are you so mad? Out of a job ‘because’ of migrants? Friends out of work? Broke? Pressure to be a breadwinner? Feeling like your promised piece of the pie has been stolen?

                      Afraid? I think we’re all a little afraid. If you’re not a bit afraid you are not paying attention. At the whim of globalists and their markets, planets life-support systems imperiled, bloody terrorists in our back yard. That’s some heavy crap, all of it. But for a moment imagine having background fear all your life. That’s what it’s like as a minority living with ‘accepted’ racism. People hurt you and others laugh. Try that for security.

                      You might have concerns but you are not being forthright about them. Taking a stance for the working white man who’s worried about immigrants and thinks its justified to punch folk in the face for calling racist – total BS. Check your shit, seriously.

                      All of us here, by politics and circumstances and genealogy that got us here, are here. We have to live with what we got and one might hope improve on that. We’ve got huge tasks ahead of us with a planet to retrofit. That’s worth blowing off steam for, that’ll require all hands on deck.

                      “Let’s all die in a ditch for something that won’t put an ounce of bread on anyone’s table.”

                      Let’s not aye. And screw your ounce of bread don’t be so self absorbed. You are not the victim.

                    • Stuart Munro.

                      “And screw your ounce of bread don’t be so self absorbed. You are not the victim.”

                      Shows what you know. I lost my career to the slave ships – the fake PC crowd cheerfully accommodated them. Tried to rebuild it doing ELT but other countries protect their own folk, regardless of competence. I’m heading for retirement completely fucking broke with no prospects whatsoever. There’s no point in doing a PhD – NZ hates intelligent.

                      So I understand perfectly well what it is to have the boot of a completely fucking useless faux PC government on my neck. A lot of my former colleagues are dead. I’ve got nothing left to lose, and I’m still better off than a lot of guys I used to work with.

                      Fearful? It’s all already happened to me.

                      I want that ounce of bread.

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      Lost your career to the slave ships – what, you were a slaver?

                      “Going into retirement with nothing. NZ hates intelligent.”

                      To be honest you’ve not shown much proof of that at all you sound more stupid as you go.

                      You are gonna get your piece of pie huh?

                      Who stole it?

                      Authorities should watch your self absorbed self-entitled ass closely. you sound like a real jerk.

                    • Stuart Munro.

                      My piece of pie is long gone WTB.

                      No, I wasn’t a slaver – that’s why I lost my job, moron.

          • Psycho Milt 5.1.4.1.7

            To my understanding there are only three regulars here who have lived and worked for any length of time in the Middle East and experienced a core Islamic nation in the whole, PsychoMilt, Stuart Munro and myself. It’s no accident we share a common skepticism around this wholesale embrace of Islam we are seeing in this country.

            That’s true, but given the tendency of some people to conflate dislike of Islam as an ideology with dislike of Muslims as people, it needs a disclaimer: my problem is with totalitarian ideologies, not with any particular people. Unlike some commenters here, I wouldn’t punch a fascist (at least, not just for being a fascist), never mind a Muslim.

            I don’t see any problem with having an imam saying prayers at an ANZAC service, because we already have religious superstition well represented at ANZAC services (the term “service” being a bit of a giveaway) and it makes no sense to favour one over another.

            However, as a general principle we secularists should be trying to drive out the last bits of religious observance from official events, not promoting further intrusion of religion into official events. That’s what bothered me about the government broadcasting an adhan to the nation – we wouldn’t make the Lord’s Prayer or the Nicene Creed an official broadcast, It is possible to support the victims of a terrorist attack against Muslims without having to pretend their religion has genuine merit.

            • solkta 5.1.4.1.7.1

              I would prefer the Lord’s Prayer to the national anthem. At least that talks about forgiving others and avoiding evil acts rather than just protecting a political entity.

            • maggieinnz 5.1.4.1.7.2

              Really good points Psycho.

        • Poission 5.1.4.2

          jacinda wore a scarf out of respect. It’s exactly the same as many older customs we perform as a sign of respect – like taking a hat off inside.

          Well in 1925 Turkey wearing the wrong type of hat would get you jailed flogged or hung.

          https://www.researchgate.net/publication/236752944_Kemalism_on_the_Catwalk_The_Turkish_Hat_Law_of_1925

        • D'Esterre 5.1.4.3

          Maggie: “You argumentum ad populum responses…”

          Heh! I’d set my responses against your reductio ad absurdum claims any day.

        • D'Esterre 5.1.4.4

          Maggie: “you’ve failed to acknowledge that the cross, a profoundly christian symbol, is frequently used as an adornment regardless of religious affiliation.”

          The cross is worn by people from a Christian background, even if they’re no longer churchgoers.

          Muslims never wear it.

    • Maggie 5.2

      Heather, your comment really gives me hope. You’ve picked up on the bigger issues at play and accurately identified key problems. Our kids aren’t being taught to approach history with a critical eye. There is little to no room to challenge why these things happened, were they right and good, how have these events shaped our present day. I think this leads our kids to blindly accept adult “wisdom” as truth – a folly further espoused by the obedient soldier doing his duty for his country.
      I have the utmost respect for those who serve but that respect doesn’t entail a total acceptance of the rationale or reasoning at the time.

  6. Heather Grimwood 6

    I’m thinking that the age of enlightenment is seemingly a long way from being fulfilled. Just as we have seen our P.M. lead a surge towards it, comes this reactionary behaviour towards a forward- thinking RSA leader.
    I’m sure he has not the slightest intention of detracting from the mourning of lost relatives, but these lost relatives belonged to both opposing armies, both pawns in the continual global greed for resources, be they minerals or land.
    As an attendee at Anzac Day events from early 1940’s when people were closely involved in the wellbeing of soldier relatives and the bereaved in the community, I agree with esoteric pineapples at 4, that nationalistic elements have grown more dominant.
    Later in the ’80’s at an RSA Anzac service in well-to-do area of Auckland , I wore a small peace badge, could not believe my ears at the sermon, and was astounded that the venerable clergyman concerned walked up to me afterwards and chided me roundly for wearing the badge.
    My point is that propaganda abounds in many ways.
    In conclusion, I commend heartily the Crusaders’ management who are seemingly doing their part, albeit costly for them, to further progress of enlightenment.

  7. McFlock 7

    General question for everyone regarding a wee snippet from D’Esterre:

    There have been Muslims here in NZ since the 19th century, but NOW people want them included in ANZAC day services?

    Given the long-standing history of Muslims in NZ, how do we actually know that none of our WW1 soldiers were not Muslim?

    Even in a support role? Even one or two?

    • marty mars 7.1

      I put this up last night. Not specific enough for your query I think. but interesting imo

      https://amp.theguardian.com/world/2017/nov/12/forgotten-muslim-heroes-fought-for-britain-first-world-war

    • Maggie 7.2

      Exactly McFlock. And if, as is stated, the service is for NZ and Australian service recognition why Muslims are excluded. At what point do they become “real” New Zealanders who get to share our culture?

      I’m still baffled as to why having a Muslim say a prayer somehow changes what the service is about and who it recognises.

    • D'Esterre 7.3

      McFlock: “…how do we actually know that none of our WW1 soldiers were not Muslim?”

      I assume that you mean none were Muslim. Probably not particularly likely, given the circumstances: Gallipoli and all that. I’ve read the lists of the soldiers with whom my uncles had served: no names other than what one would expect from NZ volunteers at the time.

      If any were Muslim, they’d Anglicised their names. Who knows…

    • D'Esterre 7.4

      McFlock: “Given the long-standing history of Muslims in NZ, how do we actually know that none of our WW1 soldiers were not Muslim?”

      A member of this household with specialist knowledge of this sort of thing is of the view that they wouldn’t have been allowed to enlist. The colonies were quite hardline about that. No doubt to a greater extent than Old Blighty.

      • McFlock 7.4.1

        Both comments perfectly valid, yet given the 150 NZers of Chinese ethnicity who served in WW1 (including Gallipili -empires put everyone on the frontlines) I can’t help but ponder that the Nu Zuld reactionaries are going off half cocked.

        It would really suck if the desire to commemorate a stereotype of NZ ANZACS means that they deny the existence of real soldiers.

  8. peterlepaysan 8

    For heavens sake Gallipoli was a monumental mistake of THE BRITISH EMPIRE.

    NZ and oz were a corps of the BRITISH ARMY. That is what anzac stands for. Cannon fodder for the british empire.

    Thank heavens that britain can no longer send our citizens to their deaths.

    The fact that Turks are mainly, not entirely, moslem is irrelevant. The Turks were defending their land against a foreign invader. Religion is irrelevant.

    Anzac day celebrates a defunct empire embroiled in brexit.
    Given the contempt that ozzies show new zealanders I fail to see any anzac spirit worth defending.
    Britain embraced the EU at NZ’s expense.
    We still celebrate a WW1 imperial (long defunct) disaster?

    Time we all grew up.
    I appreciate that familial considerations matter, and I respect them, and that the day matters is important.

    What is also important that intolerant bigots do not take control of an anniversary.

    • Maggie 8.1

      “What is also important that intolerant bigots do not take control of an anniversary.”

      Exactly! Thank you.

    • D'Esterre 8.2

      Peterlepaysan: “For heavens sake Gallipoli was a monumental mistake of THE BRITISH EMPIRE.”

      Yeah, we’re aware of the history.

      There’s this, though. Had the Gallipoli campaign been a success for the Empire, there would likely have been no Armenian genocide.

      But the Turkish victory at Gallipoli emboldened them to embark upon that genocide.

      So: something else to regret about the Empire’s defeat. In addition to the waste of my uncles’ lives.

      Although in truth, even had there been an imperial defeat of the Turks, my uncles would doubtless still have died.

      • peterlepaysan 8.2.1

        We were discussing anzac day. Not armenia.

        You really are suspect as an honest discusser. Maybe you should stand for a ntional party seat.

    • D'Esterre 8.3

      Peterlepaysan: “The fact that Turks are mainly, not entirely, moslem is irrelevant. The Turks were defending their land against a foreign invader. Religion is irrelevant.”

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mehmed_V

      “‘Mehmed V’s most significant political act was to formally declare jihad against the Entente Powers (Allies of World War I) on 14 November 1914, following the Ottoman government’s decision to join the First World War on the side of the Central Powers.[4] He was actually said to look with disfavor on the pro-German policy of Enver Pasha.[5]'”

      Islam wasn’t irrelevant.

      • peterlepaysan 8.3.1

        Germany effectively trapped/ blackmailed turkey into entering ww1.
        Forget islam and jihadism.

        Do you work for crosby/textor?

  9. Macro 9

    Actually you don’t have to be muslim to be excluded from the RSA. My dad served in WW1 and as an 18 year old was wounded in the trenches in France. He suffered a permanent disability to his left arm and hand for the rest of his life. On emigrating to NZ in the 1920’s he thought he would go along to the RSA . He went once. Totally shunned, as he was not considered worthy.
    I’m disappointed that attitudes have not changed much.

    • peterlepaysan 9.1

      i am 76. Ihave very vivid memories of the british intolerance of the RSA. My father fought for the Allies ,both in the navy and army. He was among other things, an engineer experienced in oil field work and railway work. When the push back against Japanese occupation of Burma began he was very popular.

      We moved to NZ when I was 6/7. Pop was never accepted. He was brown skinned and never served in a NZ or oz force. RSA did not want to know.

      • D'Esterre 9.1.1

        Peterlepaysan: “He was brown skinned and never served in a NZ or oz force. RSA did not want to know.”

        It wouldn’t have been skin colour. It was the fact that the RSA was originally set up for former ANZAC servicemen. Others – including the Brits – weren’t welcome. It was many years before that changed.

    • Maggie 9.2

      Thank you for sharing that Macro. Can I say that regardless of the actions of the RSA I deeply appreciate the service your father gave and am sorry he wasn’t recognised for it.

      Greywarshark was kind enough to share similar stories to yours of Vietnam veterans who were treated the same way.
      What is concerning is that all the original returning soldiers have died yet this attitude remains. Will it ever die a natural death if it’s being taught and romanticised in schools, passed down as oral tradition and rubber stamped by our government?

      I’m wondering why, we as a nation, still support the Anzac service when it is so entrenched in exclusivity and I’m seriously considering whether I’ll personally support Anzac celebrations from here on out.

      • Anne 9.2.1

        I have not attended an ANZAC ceremony in years Maggie. What I do is visit my local memorial later in the day and plant a poppy for my father who was deserving of more recognition for his endeavours during WW2 than he ever received.

      • D'Esterre 9.2.2

        Maggie: “What is concerning is that all the original returning soldiers have died yet this attitude remains.”

        I’ve pointed out that the RSA was originally set up exclusively for ANZAC servicemen. Since all the ANZACs are dead, it’d be pointless for it to exclude other servicemen and women. Last I knew, membership was open to all those people.

        “Will it ever die a natural death if it’s being taught and romanticised in schools”

        What is this “it” of which you speak, and what do you mean by it being taught and romanticised in schools? I wonder if you’re aware of the NZ history curriculum in high schools. Good luck with romanticising any aspect of history: teens’d see right through that and call it out.

        “Passed down as oral tradition and rubber stamped by our government?”

        What is it that the government is rubber stamping, and how?

    • Anne 9.3

      Interesting comment Macro @ 9.

      My father saw action in the last year of WW1 as a young lad (who lied about is age) and all of WW2 as an Army Officer. My parents arrived in NZ in 1939 and in all that time until he died in 1982 he shunned the RSA – would not have a bar of them. Now I know why.

  10. If I was around I might turn up and shout ‘insh’allah’. As it is I’ll be bicycle touring, is there anything better?

    My first name is Hebrew
    My last name is German
    My upbringing is European
    My belief is atheist
    My schoolmates were Muslim
    My upbringing is Christian
    My ideology is, tolerate anything but intolerance
    My music is punk and new age
    Today I’ve enjoyed a Te Reo class

    Y’all can just bugger off into your suburban picket fenced suburbia if you don’t appreciate some pacifism.

  11. Mark 11

    People do enjoy a sense of tradition and continuity. They should not be condemned for this. It would be inappropriate, say, to intrude on a Japanese tea ceremony with loud rap music or perhaps include the Lord’s prayer in the funeral rites of a Buddhist. We can enjoy various cultural expressions in a multiracial, multicultural society, but that does not mean they have to all be put into the same room all at once.

    If I go to KFC, I don’t expect to be able to buy chinese dumplings, and I don’t expect southern fried chicken at Barilla dumplings on Dominion road –even though I love both.

    However ANZAC day is a national ceremony belonging to the whole nation. Some will then argue that it should necessarily be inclusive of as many cultures and beliefs as possible. However, it also has a legacy and tradition that connects the country to its past. If it is continually updated and modified, it will very soon lose its poignancy and relevancy.

    Indeed the ceremony should be inclusive to the extent that it welcomes and celebrates people of all backgrounds attending the ceremony. Newcomers will enjoy and appreciate the ceremony and service more, if it is held in an authentic way that is historically accurate.

    • Maggie 11.1

      I understand the ceremonial aspects of the service but still don’t see how having a Muslim say a prayer changes anything. The comparisons you’ve offered are like for like, as in, comparing two foods, two religions etc. and the inclusion of a prayer as a singular event isn’t updating or modifying anything.
      I would have thought that if their concern was breaking with tradition they would have said so. Instead they clearly said Anzac was for NZ and Aussie soldiers only.
      This isn’t the first time there’s been a fuss either. They got their nose out of joint over Maori performing an impromptu haka last year, even referred to it as “insulting”.

      https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-11/hakas-future-at-anzac-day-events-in-doubt/9732512

    • peterlepaysan 11.2

      “However ANZAC day is a national ceremony belongoing to the whole nation.”
      Rubbish.
      It is a date that marks a british imperial disaster when Turks, australians and new zealanders were needlessly killed.

      It is possibly the date when NZ started to question british imperial rule.

      I will drink a toast to that. NZ defence chiefs, in WW2, kept their commands under NZ control.

      OBTW I will also drink a toast to the fact that it is public holiday. That is anice way to celebrate a brish imperial disaster. Cheers!

  12. Observer Tokoroa 12

    1) As usual with Britain
    Anzac was a monumental Military Mess. An Imperial Stupidity.

    It is fitting that the Brits should remember their shambles and their numerous Colonial Dead.

    The Only persons who should be banned from Anzac day are the English Generals who caused the appalling Gallipoli Massacres. They are deceased.

    2) In a democracy all activities should be declared as Suitable and Desirable and given A License.

    This includes Religions, Churches and Schools. Every Business Venture, including Gambling, Sky Diving and Religion must be Licensed.

    Every activity whether a charity or a Public Holiday must have a License.

  13. Ad 13

    No, there won’t be any “tearing limb from limb”.

    Take pride that our processes leading outrage to reconciliation are some of the best and most thorough that the world has ever seen. The event has unified our country in all ways good ways.

    It’s disappointing but not unexpected that an RSA would react that way. They should have been bigger than that.
    But they’ve use Christian prayers and hymns to memorialize their dead, which is their language and syntax and music of memorialization for a century. The bandwidth of its meaning is pretty narrow, and very precise after the 5 years of official memorialization of WW1 that we’ve just gone through.

    I would have preferred to see the lives of the Christchurch dead on something like the National Memorial in Wellington, but, as with the Erebus disaster memorial, we’ll now have to wait suitable decades for everyone to agree on how this tragedy will be memorialized, where, and who will pay for it.

    I would however like to see the Muslim communities form an annual memorialization of their own – one which has strong government funding and engagement. It would be a massive diplomatic opportunity to offer that to the leading Muslim nations to support such a venture. And it would be good for all of us to remember that day as powerfully as Parihaka, Matariki, ANZAC Day, Labour Day, Waitangi Day, or any of the other ones.

    Maybe: Christchurch Day. Or simply: March 15 Day.

    • Cinny 13.1

      Ad you’ve got me thinking…..

      I’d be down with a Día de Muertos (Aotearoa styles aka blended styles).

      That could be rather epic in a way.

      Mental health benefits maybe… (feelings less likely to be bottled and explode with an annual holiday day to remember anyone that’s passed on). All of those passed/fallen no matter the circumstance. Inclusive.

      The way I see it, as it stands, ANZAC day is the only active death remembrance public holiday on our calendar.

      Easter doesn’t count as a death remembrance public holiday for me, that date is subject to change which is guided by phases of the moon, another rebranded pagan festival.

      A public holiday remembrance day for those fallen, inclusive like the melting pot of cultures in present day Aotearoa, meaningful.

      New for a young country like ours, but not so new at all,

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Festival_of_the_Dead

      • Ad 13.1.1

        Now you’re getting into our old national melancholy.
        It’s the right place to be with both Easter and ANZAC Day coming up.

        Easter may well be altered in date, but there’s no getting around it’s focus on death and resurrection whatever mythology you choose.

        ANZAC Day follows the similar dark script, and is as equally scripted by Christianity.

        Waitangi Day is for the most part also a remembrance of tragedy and redemption.

        Same with Guy Fawkes and Parihaka. Mean tragedies redeemed through history.

        I wouldn’t want any melting pot remembrance for March 15.
        The Muslim community deserve their own, as specific as all the others we have.

        • Cinny 13.1.1.1

          Totally get where you are coming from Ad.

          I guess I’m just trying to come up with a solution that includes all and excludes none.

          Personally I’ve no problem with an extra prayer on ANZAC day.

      • solkta 13.1.2

        Once upon a time we had Halloween. But like Easter that became a celebration of sugar.

  14. Ike 14

    Maybe the muslim community should be welcomed to ANZAC commemorations and the British community excluded. https://www.globalresearch.ca/world-war-i-the-gallipoli-campaign-the-untold-story/5445098

  15. maggieinnz 15

    We each deal with our own Red. Our shit is ours to sort. Theirs is theirs. There’s even a bible verse for that..you know, log, spec, eye…

    “Very few Christians or even Jews would advocate implementing it the context of a modern secular state. And many would be loud in their condemnation of any attempt to do.”

    Rubbish. Nowadays they wrap their religion in politics. Look at how the US is trying to bring women back under men’s control. Look at Russia who sought a “return to family values” by decriminalising domestic violence. So now, husbands can choke and punch their wives into submission so long as he doesn’t break bones. Bruises, cuts, scratches are all AOK.

    When I was 17 I lost my virginity to rape. I was made to stand up in front of our congregation and “confess” to not being pure. Their justification for doing this was James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to each other..” and 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
    And even though god had apparently forgiven me of that “sin” and makes me clean again, in the eyes of the church I was still and would always be “second-hand trash no self respecting man would want to marry”.

    The funny thing was, it was only ever the sexual sins that we had to confess.

    About a year ago my cousin’s kid went off the rails a bit. Took up with an older guy. When she came back they were going to make her confess her “sin” in church. I argued black and blue for that girl and luckily my cousin saw sense and didn’t make her go through with it.

    And if you think those things the church did to me was what caused me to become an atheist you’d be wrong. I continued to believe and attend church up into my 30’s.

    Even you should know that having a pissing contest over who’s the most evil isn’t a rational argument Red. That sort of thing is simply a way to move the heat off you onto someone more “deserving” in your opinion.

    • Cinny 15.1

      That’s messed up as Maggie, am stunned. What brand of church thought that was a good idea?

      • Maggie, your story about that Church and demand for public shaming by you, rings true. A female friend of mine related a story of her niece being raped by her father. Their church persuaded the nice not to go to the police as it was “better to forgive” instead.

        The father was active in that Church.

        The niece never went to Police. Her fragile state of mind couldn’t survive a court case and harsh cross-examination. The father, though, is shunned by the entire extended family (if that’s any consolation).

        The church, though, was never held to account.

    • The fact that bad people do bad things regardless of their philosophy doesn’t alter the fact that there differences in the relative merits of different philosophies.

      For example, most people who study totalitarian ideologies conclude that fascism is a worse one than communism. However, both fascism and communism have resulted in the mass murder of categories of people just for falling into that category (which is one reason I tend to treat apologists for Soviet communism with the same contempt as apologists for Nazi fascism). The relative merits of the two ideologies made no difference to the people they killed, but it does make a difference in any political discussion about those ideologies.

    • Even you should know that having a pissing contest over who’s the most evil isn’t a rational argument Red. That sort of thing is simply a way to move the heat off you onto someone more “deserving” in your opinion

      It reminds me of ten year olds pointing to each other, trying to shift blame by saying their mischief was worse.

      The underlying aim, of course, is to minimise the actions of the (alleged) Christchurch terrorist/gunman and attempting to manufacture a cause-effect by pointing to extremism elsewhere.

  16. vto 16

    .
    religion
    .
    military
    .
    politics
    .

    these are the world’s three monsters, none of which deserves respect in these times

    they have each wound themselves into death spiral knots with each other

    where it will end

    i think we

    know
    ..
    very dangerous times

  17. Beautifully written. I believe the sentiment is shared by most New Zealanders who are fair minded and believe in giving people a fair go.

    The vitriolic response from a (hopefully) tiny, raucous minority shows those individuals in a poor light.

  18. greywarshark 18

    How we really are at home. We don’t realise what the war was like, we don’t want to know. Can’t seem to put our mind to it, and then can’t listen to what it was like for our family members much less the war as a whole. There should have been small meetings held every week where soldiers gave first-hand account of some chosen aspect of the war. Whether many people would have understood the opportunity this provided and gone so as to inform themselves and lighten the burden of memories of the Forces men and women I don’t know.

    But this sort of propaganda fun stuff makes it look like a theme holiday camp.
    The Andrews Sisters – they were good value.

    Vera Lynn – she keeps going. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vera_Lynn
    Soothing and promising.
    Auf Wiedersehn Sweetheart
    (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WsuLH4sulA

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