We didn't have to wait long for another example of gross racism from a Government official...This time a Minister of the Crown!
This weekend, Minister for the Prevention of Family and Sexual Violence Marama Davidson proudly declared on camera: “I am the prevention [of] violence Minister, and I know who causes violence in the world, and it’s white cis men.”
As alarming as it is to once again be confronted by how easily and happily our Government differentiates us based on skin colour, it is also an example of how this kind of racialised politics doesn't help anyone.
It certainly doesn't help all of the victims of family violence that was not caused by a white man. Does the minister not consider them in her work? New Zealand has some of the worst statistics for family violence in the OECD!
Her abhorrent statement is actually receiving endorsement from groups and individuals who clearly have a warped and inaccurate picture of the world and no understanding of how family violence dominates our violent crime statistics.
If Chris Hipkins fails to sanction Minister Marama Davidson, he will be demonstrating that his Government endorses racism and hateful behaviour so long as it is directed at the 'right' people.
Last week our Prime Minister boldly proclaimed: “My message is anybody exercising their right to free speech, whatever the circumstances are, should be mindful we don’t want to incite hateful behaviour or violence, in fact its illegal to do so, and I think everyone should bear that in mind.”
What will he say about a minister of his Government inaccurately painting a racial group as a unique threat to the safety of New Zealanders?
Our Government and media see no harm in dividing New Zealanders by skin colour, inferring different rights dependant on which side of the classification you stand.
While every effort is being made to convince us that the delivery of public services will be enhanced by racially split governance arrangements, it is clear that this is a wedge that is being used to divide our diverse population.
When legislation and policy establish systems that do not demand the delivery of better outcomes, but do demand that citizens be treated differently based on race, is it really surprising that a minister would voice those same stigmatising views?
Violence and issues of law and order are serious concerns for New Zealand as we see gun violence and gang crime escalate. The Government has been unapologetically soft on crime and now their failed policies are bearing the fruit of unsafe communities. How convenient that ministers like Marama Davidson can blame colonisation and "white cis men" for the situation instead!
It seems that this racism will continue unless we do something about it. The time to stand up to racism in all its forms is now.
I denounce Marama Davidson’s claims. They are blatantly false. All kinds of New Zealanders are represented in the crime statistics. Yes, men commit a lot more violent crimes than women, but "white cis men" are far from the only perpetrators.
With over 14 years of police service, mostly in South Auckland, I witnessed violence and incomprehensible cruelty. Allocating accountability to a skin colour is offensive to the victims, to the vulnerable, and to those who are trying to deliver solutions. Not to mention to men who happen to have white skin!
- When we called for the Race Relations Commissioner to denounce racism and the endorsement of violence against people of white skin, the response was an eerie silence.
- When we expressed concern about the potential for increased intolerance and violence, the Race Relations Commissioner used the defence of the “trauma of colonisation”.
- When we tried to go public and expose the lack of accountability and lack of response from Meng Foon, NZME refused to publish our commentary through paid advertising.
- When we demand equality before the law, we are confronted with legislation that is founded on differentiating rights based upon when your ancestors arrived in the country.
- When we demand a conversation about co-governance, it is we who are called racist.
- Enough is enough: we cannot allow our nation to be ripped apart by those who hide behind a shield of faux-moral superiority.
We are in an election year and as the political posturing gains momentum we must send a clear message that we have had enough. We cannot allow the media and those seeking to be elected to tell us what the election issues this year will be. We must tell them what matters to us.
Join the fight to end racism. All racism. Not just Marama Davidson's version.
A fair and equal New Zealand that tolerates no racism, of any kind, is my bottom line.
Every New Zealander must be afforded the same dignity and respect. The same rights.
With your help and continued support our voice can only grow louder.