Scratch the surface, and you see deep-seated racism alive and well in New Zealand.
Unfortunately for those of us on the environmental left, it is alive and well in the Labour Party which, I guess, is another good reason to be Green.
Hone Harawira was attacked by Phil Goff – not for the stupid sexist “rape” and “motherfucker” terminology in his ill-advised email (for which he has apologised) – but on this basis:
When you come out and you make a comment like that, where you brand a whole ethnic group in this country in the most obscene and vile way, and then apologise for the language, but not for the meaning, there is no place in parliament for that.
Harawira’s actual words were:
“White motherfuckers have been raping our lands and ripping us off for centuries…”
Which is true. Harawira didn’t implicate white people in general. But some white colonists and their descendants did precisely what Harawira describes – starting with legislation designed to alienate Maori land in the 1860s and, shamefully and most recently, Helen Clark and Michael Cullen – both of whom I otherwise hold a lot of respect for – through the Foreshore and Seabed Act.
It pains me that otherwise astute and well researched commentators such as Marty G at The Standard have bought into the Goff line. I’m not sure if they actually believe it, or if it is just blind loyalty to the Labour Party.
As Zetetic, another commentator at The Standard says:
It’s clear that Turia and Sharples will always go with the elite. Harawira represented the Maori working class.
Harawira’s clearly been deeply unhappy with the direction Turia and Sharples have taken the party. Betraying the Maori working class on issues like tax cuts and ACC. Cuddling up to the bosses’ party.
Right on! Despite his silly choice of language, Hone is one of us.
So I’m sure he won’t mind me posting this song by a bunch of white motherfuckers, albeit leftie and environmentalist ones, for him: