Right to accept Suhayra and children
In a number of countries, the definition of "terrorist" as being anyone suspected of being associated or belong to any Muslim radical group was introduced by the US after the 9/11 attack. Nowadays, to be labelled a terrorist is considered sufficient grounds to detain such people without charge as the US did at Guantanamo Bay.
In America the Klu Klux Klan is a white supremacist terrorist hate group whose primary targets are African Americans as well as Muslims and Jews. Yet in the US members of that group are not charged as terrorists. What's the difference?
Here, the Government has announced accepting the return of a woman linked to the ISIL group and her two young children, after Australia revoked the former dual national's citizenship last year.
Her transgression is apparently being associated to the ISIL group. But has she been charged or found guilty of any crime against others? Members of gangs in New Zealand are not treated as criminals and nor should members of other radical groups, as such, be considered as criminals.
It is only right and just for us, being compassionate people, to accept back Suhayra and her children as our own.
Brian Alderson, Glen Eden.
Dragging the chain
Jamie MacKay argues (NZ Herald, July 27) that farmers are doing the right thing and need more time.
The truth is farmers have been let down by their leaders and their political representatives.
Governments started talking seriously about climate change and the necessary measures in the 2000s. Remember a farmer driving a tractor up the steps of Parliament in protest?
But farmers have been exempted from almost every requirement of adherence to the Emissions Trading Scheme, and have had many carve outs and put-offs on environmental protection measures over nearly 20 years now.
Why is that a problem? It makes the necessary adjustments that need to be made even harder. It is easier to make these changes over a period of time and the more they are put off, the harder it gets.
As we see from the recent floods in the South Island, exacerbated by climate change, "time waits for no man".
It would be far better if those who represent farmers buckled down to getting progress, rather than obstructing it at every stage.
Peter Davis, Kingsland.
A recent Claire Trevett article used the online headline "Dismiss protesting farmers as rednecks at your peril, Prime Minister" (NZ Herald, July 24).
This was mischievous and misleading. The Prime Minister never used that term about the farmers' protest. Besides, our PM would not sink to such crude language. It cannot be excused by saying it was the writer's intention to issue a warning to the PM not to use that term. Despite any such warning being impudent, a warning is only given when there is some evidence that something is about to happen. Trevett had no such evidence as none existed. An apology should be made to the Prime Minister.
Russell Armitage, Hamilton.
After the anti-lockdown demonstrations in Sydney and Melbourne, I thought that Australians might have a mortgage on stupidity.
However, upon hearing that 75 per cent of people offered places in a mass vaccination event by MIT had not responded, I am not so sure.
And when I heard that one of the reasons for the low uptake was a lack of a "festive atmosphere" I am really beginning to wonder about my fellow New Zealanders.
Maybe if we had not been so successful in our Covid response, people would take things more seriously.
Greg Cave, Sunnyvale.
Dose them all
Many commentators now speak of a long-term future in which our lives are perpetually limited by Covid. Are we really going to allow a minority of unvaccinated people to keep us locked onto the Covid rollercoaster, with our economy, tourism, isolation facilities and health system under stress?
It is time for a bold step - make vaccination compulsory for adults. Only those with medical exemptions would be exempt.
About 99 per cent of those dying of Covid around the world are unvaccinated. With all adults vaccinated, Covid would be no more dangerous than flu.
Andrew Tichbon, Green Bay.
Is our Labour Minister of Transport blinded by ideology and as far out of his depth in his portfolio as his predecessor?
It would seem so, observing the way he is trying to breathe life into the proposal to run light rail from Auckland's CBD to the airport and distancing himself from any responsibility for the businesses being destroyed by continuing delays to the city rail link project.
Was a small snippet in the Herald advising of an information day on light rail at a Māngere market recently a start on his promise of public consultation? Will there be more information days elsewhere widely publicised? Will he take any notice of negative feedback including the fact that so far it doesn't stack up financially?
Coralie van Camp, Remuera.
Simon Wilson serves it up to Leo Molloy (NZ Herald, July 27).
I heard Leo talk recently about his aspirations, should he become Mayor of Auckland, and he made some very good points - light rail to nowhere – up a narrow Dominion Rd; the farcical cycling and walking Bridge proposal.
If someone moves 1cm to the right, Simon gets energised and out comes his true colours. His knowledge of 1981 music was very good although he did miss a big one: Under Pressure, by Queen and David Bowie.
Mark Evans, Oratia.
What a brave man Mackenzie Skinner (NZ Herald, July 26) is to have gone public with the harm this disgusting incident has caused him.
Even worse in my view (and I'm sure I'm not alone in this) is the paltry sentence these two people were handed-four weeks community service and a $1000 fine.
How can this possibly deter any other cretins from doing something similar as a great way to end a Saturday night of drinking
You have all my sympathy, Mackenzie.
Susan Wilson, Waiheke Island.
On reading the very interesting article (NZ Herald, July 26) about the kauri research by Richard Winkworth and the ancient origin of the die-back fungus phytophora agathidicida, one wonders whether the relentless logging of the best trees in the 19th and early 20th centuries did not deprive the population of healthy seedlings and left the remaining plants with a low resilience that is only becoming apparent today. Therefore, there could also be a genetic cause for the kauri die-back.
Bernhard Sporli, Epsom.
Armed for safety
The arming of our police (NZ Herald, July 23) is so very overdue. As a result, we see more injuries and, unfortunately, deaths of our officers and this should no longer be tolerated.
Over the years, respect for our police has steadily become less and less, and we often see or read about the many one-sided situations they have to confront.
Surely the numbers of people wishing to pursue a career in the forces will decrease if action is not taken promptly to arm our officers, as will the public's confidence in our protectors?
John Heald, Milford.
The TV1 Olympics coverage is so one-eyed it's cringeworthy. Necessarily, we need to see as many events as possible which contain New Zealand contestants but, instead of filling the rest of the time with other events, we see the same and analysis of the New Zealand competitors over and over again until the TV is turned off through boredom.
This ruins the whole spirit of the, already compromised, Olympic Games which contains such a vast number of other events.
Another example of New Zealand peering at the world with tunnel vision.
Richard Kean, Ngongotaha.
I do commend the inspirational "Travel" supplements on "things to see and do" in New Zealand. With the hold put on overseas travel, it has been a treat to see all the wonderful places available to everyone, right here in our beautiful country.
While camping in the South Island, we were chatting with a couple from Auckland who had travelled the world before touring New Zealand. They were truly blown away with the grandeur and declared this the best scenery they had ever seen.
Each "Travel" supplement is yet another treasure to explore.
K. Gore, Pyes Pa.
Short & sweet
Great column from Simon Wilson (NZ Herald, July 27). Leo, love what you stand for. You've got my vote. Ian Cunningham, Bayswater.
I like this present Labour Government but they're being entirely too lackadaisical about our Covid-19 vaccine rollout. The next election isn't all that far away. Robert Myers, Auckland Central.
It is surprising our athletes still wear black outfits in the searing Tokyo heat. How much would their performances be enhanced if they wore silver (even reflective) with a black fern? Dave Miller, Tauranga.
I wonder, how much more coal we will need when most of our vehicles are fully electric?
Barrie Cavill, Henderson.
I can hear the Huntly Power Station running day and night. Thank you townies, you can feel pious while you run around in your electric vehicles. Lonnie Johnston, Huntly.
Auckland's cycleways deliver 10 times better value-for-money than new cycling bridge. For the mathematically illiterate, 10 times nought equals nought. Andrew Montgomery, Remuera.
The premium debate
New Zealand farmers are the most emissions-efficient in the world. Why would you put the brakes on them so other countries have to produce food with higher emissions (or starve)? Grant H.
I am a city dweller but agree with the farmers. We seem prepared to destroy so much when our contribution to global emissions is so very tiny. If any of our farmers' production moves overseas, then that will actually increase emissions. Ian U.
Maybe if farmers hadn't opposed any and all controls on pollution for decades, whether greenhouse gas or river water, more dramatic action wouldn't be required now. And maybe don't push discord about rural or townies, maybe it's just corporate polluters we need to focus on. Matthew H.
As noted, most farmers are happy to do their bit in reducing emissions ... just over a sensible timeframe and when the technology allows. As it says in the Paris Accord, countries should not compromise food supplies in their emission-reduction programmes. Nick C.
There seems to be evidence that good farmers are doing good things, but do we have the luxury of time to give other farmers another decade to change? Won't better environmental practices across the board make Kiwi farmers' products even more attractive to export markets - we market ourselves as clean and green don't we? I also wholeheartedly agree that urban dwellers need to play our part and it seems we need penalties to do that too. Rachel B.
The next time the farming community have a protest they could show a little more class and taste in the placards they use. Some of them were nothing short of ugly, misogynistic, racist and disrespectful to say the least. Janet H.
Many of us are aware change is required during our lifetime but it should be managed in a way we all can support any changes rather than them being dictated to us. Desmond H.