Tuesday, May 24, 2011

one step at a time

It has been helpful to take a micro-break from blogging. Of course i did have 4 assignments due, from RMA to te Tiriti, the role of hapū to te reo Māori. Phew!

There has been the budget and for me it is just the budget they give before Don Brash gets the Finance Minister reins and introduces extremely nasty programs that the gnats will be able to distance themselves from, whilst introducing them. The election is the goal everything else is secondary to that, including the latest budget. And the reason the election is so important is because of reports like this one, showing that maori spend two times as long on benefits than others.

The study, tracking 1265 people born in Christchurch in 1977, found that Maori spent an average of 21 months on welfare between the ages of 21 and 30 compared with just 8.5 months for non-Maori.
and what are the causes of this inequality?
The study said the gap could be explained by Maori having more behavioural problems as teenagers, leaving school without qualifications, abusing alcohol, having babies before age 21, and coming from poorer families with mothers who smoked and drank in pregnancy and parents who punished their children too early or neglected them.
What is the underlying cause - because that sounds a little like blaming Māori to me and there certainly seems to be some gross, racially-based generalisations in that statement (i'll go and read the report in case I have got it all wrong). Māori don't punish their children too early or neglect them - of course individuals do and they are from some community, but that line of thinking is too simplistic. Look around the world in places where Māori don't live and you will find the same abuses occuring. There are higher instances of these negative statistics with all colonised peoples and that is where the answer is too - if we want to front up to it.

I've been pleased that Hone has been quiet, just getting on with the job - he is on breakfast TV tomorrow so tune in for some fun.

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