Māori Party fearfulness demeans our collective Democracy as much as threats towards them do

Racism in Tauranga makes it ‘unsafe’ to enter by-election, Māori Party says

The Māori Party says it considered standing a candidate in the Tauranga by-election, but opted not to over concerns about safety and racism in the region.

Party president Che Wilson said racism and hate speech in Tauranga made it a “safety issue” for the party to participate in the upcoming by-election.

“The first hate-speech conviction and the belittling of te reo Māori at a public event took place in Tauranga, even our co-leaders have been the recipient of threats and hate speech by Tauranga residents,” he said, in a statement.

“By standing in the by-election, we would be consciously sending our people into an unsafe environment and can only imagine how hard this is for our whanaunga and iwi of Tauranga Moana.”

Māori Party fearfulness demeans our collective Democracy as much as threats towards them do

I think of the courage of Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner and their murder trying to enrol African American voters in Mississippi.

I think of Hone Harawira and MANA activists that still went to work for the people despite gunshots being fired into our electoral office.

I think of the mana of the Māori Battalion in forging a sacrifice for citizenship.

Then I think of the Māori Party refusing to run in an election because someone with mental health issues said mean things online.

A tepid, brittle and timid response to threats will rob us of the strength of our commitment.

Democracy is not for the easily triggered and it doesn’t allow for emotional support pets into the Speaking Chamber.

Māori Party fearfulness demeans our collective Democracy as much as threats towards them do

 

Increasingly having independent opinion in a mainstream media environment which mostly echo one another has become more important than ever, so if you value having an independent voice – please donate here.

If you can’t contribute but want to help, please always feel free to share our blogs on social media

Original Source: https://thedailyblog.co.nz/2022/05/13/maori-party-fearfulness-demeans-our-collective-democracy-as-much-as-threats-towards-them-do/

Related Posts