We can't let Moko Rangitoheriri's death be forgotten - or be a vengeful mob storming the Taupo police cells to lynch Moko's evil killers.
One of many marches around the country took place in Lower Hutt and there were some brave men who spoke out. I quote Anaru Moke: "I was bashed myself. Who wasn't?" He says he's breaking the cycle with his own 11 children. He's a Mob member. Good on him for speaking out. Here's Star Olsen: "I knew I had to say something that was at the pit of my stomach. The hardest word for some Maori males to say is sorry." Including when they just helped torture and murder a child.
It's a waste of breath to scream that vile punishments should be inflicted on Tania Shailer, 26, and David Haerewa, 46. We'd just be drawn into an endless cycle of violence begetting more violence. But we Maori have to ask why we totally dominate statistics in the killing of more than 200 infants in the past two decades. Why us? The leaders - I mean the cowardly ones staying silent and not joining any of the marches, the ones flying business class to dubious "conferences" overseas - will never do anything to help change the significant percentage of Maori at the bottom of the heap from falling further down into the abyss.
Some Maori have no moral values because they're not taught them. Violence is perfectly acceptable behaviour, indeed admired; whether it's king-hitting a stranger in a pub, beating up the wife or partner, thrashing their children.
Families should be issued books on parenting. It must be instilled in everyone's brains from a young age that certain behaviours are totally unacceptable. Love must be taught as the founding base for a successful family. Education as the way forward. Every act of violence except in self-defence must be socially outlawed, considered a shameful let-down of the entire community.
Cultural leaders should review the entire kapa haka syllabus, I believe. I'm sick of the screaming, eye-popping haka. The standard of predictable, simplistic singing should be lifted. In everyday life, my opinion is girls should be brought up like the French are: to be feminine, take a pride in how they dress, walk with dignity and grace wherever they go out in public and always keep the standards. Boys should be taught to respect females.
Every Maori should get to parenting age knowing a whole set of values on how best to raise a child. It should have been burned into their consciousness that sacrifices for your children are not only an obligation, but a sacred duty.
We need an outlook of always encouraging our children. Not discouraging, running the kids' efforts down.
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There would be no shame in taking a leaf out of the Chinese book where parents, family members, all work hard to push a few more up into the educated or business-owning bracket. Reading has to be an essential part of that home environment.
Pre-European Maori culture was simple and no blame is attached. But I think it is when this too basic societal model is applied in the 21st century.
Adolescent boys - and girls - who admit to violent bullying at school or after school have to be punished. Not physically, but grounded, shamed for a period out of the family group. They must have it burned into their brains that violence sucks.
The vast majority of Maori saw the movie based on my book. I went from zero to hero in just a few weeks. Why? Because every Maori - most of whom had not read the book - came out of the theatre in a state of shock and said, "Yeah? What's the problem? That was our life up on the screen." Everyone had a Jake as a father, older brother, any number of uncles. Some were women.
Why oh why are we pushing this societal model and calling it our Renaissance? It is no such thing. It is simply a perpetuation of a culture that is irrelevant to this age. We need an outlook of always encouraging our children. Not discouraging, running the kids' efforts down. From day one at primary school, Maori children should be indoctrinated that it is not done to discourage others from having aspirations.
And someone has to point out that cultural activities do not get them a job or a mortgage.
I am going to ask our Duffy Books in Homes trustees if we can produce some books on parenting to be given out free to all 100,000 homes on our programme. It just can't go on like this, waiting for the next headline: another child - invariably Maori - tortured and murdered.
March, Maori, march. And change your ways. Real men apologise. Real men look in the mirror and change. Real men don't beat up kids or wives or anyone else. Real men love. And their children, wives and society advance with them.
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