Scott & Sarah Kennedy

Thursday, August 14, 2003


I got some fish today. I've named a few of them. Trogdor is this really cool black one with a red tail, and he has fangs (and majesty). He kinda hangs out at the back of the tank underneath the filter, or between the filter and the heater. Then there is "Arrowed" (a male guppy) and "Sworded" (the pregnant female guppy).

Real Issues - Maxim Weekly Email

This came out in real issues. Ms Turia is the type of 'radical Maori' I was talking about in a post a few days earlier. I refuse to be called a guest. I am tangata whenua. I belong here, and this is my country, as much as it is any other New Zealand citizens.

Are Pakeha guests in New Zealand?

Are Pakeha merely guests in New Zealand? Associate Maori Affairs Minister Tariana Turia has made it clear she believes that to be the case. She wants the name 'Maori' to be replaced by 'tangata whenua' - the people of the land - to emphasise they are the hosts.

Ms Turia is a member of a government trying to promote Maori and Pakeha as partners. But we can't have it both ways. What she is implying in talking of 'hosts' and 'guests', is, that the host is in charge and guests have to comply with their way of doing things. This is not a partnership. The question remains: are Pakeha guests, settlers, or conquerors? Historian Michael King, who has strong links with Maori, offers another perspective in his book Being Pakeha Now:

"Like the ancestors of the Maori, [my ancestors] came as immigrants; like Maori too, we became indigenous at the point where our focus of identity and commitment shifted to this country and away from our countries and cultures of origin. Again like Maori, our culture - mainstream Pakeha culture - altered here in response to a relationship with the land and its flora and fauna. Ultimately that culture was transformed by interaction, history and experience into something whose proportions and combinations bore only a distant relationship to the original ingredients. People who live in New Zealand by choice as distinct from an accident of birth, and who are committed to this land and its people and steeped in their knowledge of both, are no less 'indigenous' than Maori."

Also, like other ministers, Ms Turia is attempting to change the language shaping our understanding of present and past issues. In a Civil Society, however, both our language and grasp of history needs to be clear, objective and accurate.


Post a Comment

<< Home