Wednesday, March 9, 2016

anything is not better than nothing

Differing viewpoints are valuable. Hone Harawira has a view on the flag debate
“The NZ flag is the one flown by every government since the 1860s that has ever stolen our land, laughed at our Treaty rights, destroyed our spirituality, stomped on our culture, imprisoned our people, and tried to kill off our language.” 
“It’s the flag of colonialism, given to us and every other colony by the Poms back in the 1800s. 80% have since dumped it; only the colonial urchins like Aussie, the Cooks, Tuvalu and us still fly that ugly little Union Jack that represents the country that called us to war when they needed help and dumped us when they wanted to join the European Union.
That is all very true and this is the truth of the situation. The Union Jack represents so much suffering for Māori, so much lost and destroyed. It is the best representation of that imo because it directly relates to those times and connects us visually and internationally as a colonised country. The Union Jack must go - of that there is no doubt.
The question then is what will replace it - and the poor attempt and rigged selections are not the answer to that. The cost, the vanity project of the PM, the lack of consultation and real discussion, the celebrities, the endorsements, the play on emotions, the contrived nature of the whole process including the final design say that NO this is not the correct or even near desired alternative. It simply is not good enough for anything.
As I said on another post
I'm pleased that I have voted for our current flag against the other one put up by key and his supporters. For me the tino rangatiratanga flag is my flag. The union jack has so many connotations relating to the colonisation of this country and I cannot get enthusiastic about it at all - I don't like it. But until we as a country are ready to embrace our past and move forward in partnership, as promised by The Treaty, then I will vote for the flag that actually represents us the way we are - warts and all. And there are lots of warts indeed. There is much work to be done to pave the way to allow a true flag for this country to come forth - I'll be working towards that.
and it is worth noting that Hone are in 100% agreement on a few things
“I’ve already chosen the flag that fits best with my heart, my soul, my life – the Maori flag. It’s the one that we designed, it carries the colours of my world, and it speaks of our history, our place in the cosmos, and the possibilities that lie ahead of us all.” 
“And it was the flag that Maori people overwhelmingly chose when we ran our own flag referendum (government spent $28.57 on the whole shebang).
and sometimes not 100%
“And don’t buy the drivel about us losing the Treaty if we change the flag. We lose the Treaty the day we lose the balls to stand up and fight for our rights, not because somebody wants to change the NZ flag.” 
“Changing the flag is a conscious decision to say goodbye to our colonial past and say hello to a brighter future. Maori people have already done it. Might be time for the rest of New Zealand to follow suit”
Changing the flag imo will make it harder to implement The Treaty. It will be another blocker that those who don't want true partnership will use to delay and disrupt that implementation. Sure they will do that anyway but why give them another tool to use.
Difference of opinion is valuable - it helps to see and hear other views. It is healthy and necessary. I feel good within myself about my decision - I want to change the flag so, so much but until we have a proper flag that truly represents us I will stay with the one we have.


Tiger Mountain said...

good sentiments on this blog and from Hone, the “Tino” flag is “the one” for a lot of us, but I voted this time for the existing flag–grotesque Union Jack and all

uncoupled from a full republican and treaty debate Key’s rebranding is both pointless and dangerous, the current flag is a daily visual reminder for us in the post colonial era of British Imperialism’s bloody colonial takeover of this country, it would be tragic if that goes down the memory hole before Māori achieve real justice

a million NZ born live offshore and a ‘neo swamping’ by immigrant is happening before our eyes, both those groups could care less about indigenous struggles, sure a flag is not the be all and end all of that but a TPPA nation with a beach towel flag would not help

Marty Mars said...

Kia ora TM

Tautoko - I certainly agree with your comment.

travellerev said...

Hi Marty,

Here my response to Hones open letter on facebook: Dear Hone,

I respectfully disagree. I agree with the fact that the old flag is a colonial rag. I agree that we should say goodbye too the colonial era and forge a new future. I will always stand by your side to fight for that future.

But I have read and read and researched and researched and written and written about geo-politics and how it connects to Aotearoa and I'll be damned if I vote for a flag brought to us by the latest wave of colonial terrorists represented by John Key, the banking scumbag send here to make sure we don't break away from the empire.

Also had a great laugh when you called the shill te Reo Putake a brownwashedlyingbogusnamedwanker. Very correct but I hope you won't stay away from the Standard!

travellerev said...

Oops, I meant of course you not Hone calling TRP a brownwashedlyingbogusnamedwanker

Marty Mars said...

Thanks ev, we are of like mind on this one and lol - voice of reason may have listened if Hone had of said it.

travellerev said...

Ha, they might have!