David Fisher is a senior reporter for the NZ Herald.

Pushing the message about violence

Ron Bishop wants to get people thinking. Photo / Michael Craig
Ron Bishop wants to get people thinking. Photo / Michael Craig

It is a provocative message: Eliminate jails - take no prisoners.

The message is even more stark with a picture of a rifle between the words.

The message appears on T-shirts being sold by Sensible Stuff, the commercial wing of the Sensible Sentencing Trust.

Director Ron Bishop said the message did not reflect the trust's policy but was intended to get conversation going about law and order issues. Another T-shirt featured a statement suggesting prisoners be made to break rocks.

Bishop became involved in the trust after his son Dean Browne was beaten to death with a hammer in 2010. Mikhail Pandey-Johnson and Karl Nuku were convicted and are serving life sentences.

As a parent, he has one simple reaction in relation to Dean's killers: "I'd pull the trigger myself. And when people found out what happened to our son, most said they should shoot the bastards."

Bishop acknowledged his views were coloured by his experience and said sentiment was against the death penalty - but he thought society had yet to find an appropriate way to reduce violent offending.

"The shirt is a way of getting New Zealand talking about what we should do."

- Herald on Sunday

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