Cast racial division aside

I write in support of C Humphreys (Letters, May 7).

Thank goodness there are a few leaders in our community like her expressing majority public opinion. Seems some current councillors are from a different planet from us ordinary folks. I also worry sometimes about balance in the press.

I often say, central and local government politicians should spend four hours a month standing on a street corner, talking to people of all races and denominations, and reconnecting with ordinary Kiwis.

Some friends and I sat on the street for some days then knocked on over 600 doors in Katikati with a petition, connecting with our people, the ones that fund the council. If current politicians did this and abandoned what is, in my opinion, the politically correct theories, staff wishes, the racial nonsense, the manipulation of the real Treaty, and instead represent truth and reality and the aspirations in 2018 of Kiwis of all races in our multiracial society.

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Racial division should be cast aside and divisive politics abandoned. We should embrace one law for all and equal rights independent of skin colour, religion, or politics.

We are all one people, let's recognise that, and next election cast aside those local body politicians who live in the past and play the race card. Here's to a good future together. (Abridged)
Norm Mayo
Katikati

Agendas

One does not have to review the print media for long to realise that most seem to operate agendas lacking objectivity, not open to free speech.

Opinions that may vary from those of their editorial staff, journalists and contracted opinion writers are virtually never printed. Whether it is on political, cultural, national or domestic issues usually only their aspect is presented.

This opinion will doubtless lack confirmation as it will never see the light of day.
Bryan Johnson
Omokoroa

Utilise minibuses

I read with interest that there are unemployed people in the Tauranga area who are looking for work but lack transport.

I do not know if the following has been tried but It could be that the growers or packhouse managers gather together and run say two or three minibuses to collect and deliver pickers to and from a number of set points.

Employees could be drivers and paid for their driving time as an incentive.

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To my mind, there is little point in criticising the unemployed for not seeking available employment if there is no way of them reaching the venue. I realise that there is justified negative attitudes by the employers, given the poor attendance rate in the past, but sure any strategy is worth a try.
A D Kirby
Papamoa

Minority of a minority

Based on the final council byelection results, there were 95,826 voting documents sent.

Worked out from the percentage given, the majority, 67,174, people did not vote. Voter return was 28,652 votes.

The minority voted. Of that minority that voted, 23,354 voted for a candidate other than John Robson. Of that minority that voted, 5298 voted for John Robson. Congratulations John.

As the story goes: The majority did not vote, the minority voted, and the minority of that minority elected John Robson.

The council has already said the museum is still on the table, even after the referendum went against it. One man cannot stop that.

Expect considerable rates rise and therefore rent rise too. The museum will be built. From the day it opens its doors it will lose millions of ratepayer dollars.

The minority of voters voted against what would have been about $70,000 after tax going to important charities such as but not limited to the rescue helicopter. That is what happens when good people do not vote. In some countries, from memory, if at least 90 per cent of people do not vote, the election is void.

As for me, two months campaigning, a punch in the eye, a rock hurled at my windscreen, and accusations of bullying on the front page of the Bay of Plenty Times. (Abridged)
Robert Curtis
Hamilton

Blame erosion, not mangroves

The debate on whether the spread of mangroves is good or bad for wildlife is focusing on the wrong issue.

At the recent hearing on the mangrove bill in Thames, the experts from both sides of the table agreed that mangroves are spreading because of sedimentation.

New Zealand is losing 200 million tonnes of soil each year which flows downstream straight into our coastal areas where it settles as mud. The massive shell-fish die off at Okura Bay in Auckland this week shows exactly what this means for wildlife.

Mangroves are a natural response to sediment, stemming the damage pouring from our land-based activities. They're an effective natural solution to a very human problem. Tearing up mangrove forests will not address either the cause or effects of their growth, because they will simply grow back. Instead, we need councils to put in place strong rules to prevent development, forestry, and farm erosion.

We need replanted river banks. Streams must be fenced off from stock. If you see rivers running brown, send photos to the council demanding better. Because the issue is erosion, not mangrove forests.

And it can be fixed without causing further environmental damage.
Dr Rebecca Stirnemann
Forest and Bird Regional Manager