Hello and welcome to New Zealand's Herald: Let's Talk, our new feature which offers you the chance to comment on today's news and views.

We want to hear your opinions - and help answer your questions - on anything about the big issues of the day.

A huge talking point today has been dicsussion about the future of Wallaby star Israel Folau after a recent social media most. Some commentators say his career hangs in balance - could he be sacked over his post?

Politics? Business? Taxes? We're happy to let you debate them all. All you have to do to offer a comment is to click into the live blog immediately below and follow the prompts. Alternatively, you can email letters@nzherald.co.nz


To get you warmed up, here's a selection of letters to the editor from today's Herald. Do you agree with our correspondents? Or are your hackles raised? Well, have your say! (Please note comments will be moderated before publication. Comments may be edited, abridged or discarded.)

Anzac Day decisions deeply sad

In my many years on this planet, I don't think I have felt so deeply saddened and deeply disappointed. Deeply saddened for the innocent victims of the Christchurch mosque catastrophes and for the loss of innocence of our peaceful New Zealand. And deeply disappointed with New Zealand's reaction to this outrage. Despite a history of nearly 150 years of heroic and immeasurable sacrifice, our courage has crumbled and because of this act of terrorism.

It would seem we have surrendered our freedom to make our own choices, design our own laws, and at our own time and pace. Cancelling and curtailing Anzac Day parades shows that even the RSA, the one organisation that should understand what its members fought for, has succumbed to fear. I will be attending the Dawn Parade and refuse to cower in the shadows, afraid of some pallid creep that thinks he or she has more rights than the rest of us. Otherwise, they will have won.
Ashley Clarke, Beach Haven.

Silent vigils

What message do we send if we have to go into hiding? And why then, are we not cancelling other gatherings, the market days, the sports functions, and close down picture theatres concerts and shopping malls? Perhaps the answer is for us to go to the war memorials where the service has been cancelled and stand there in silent vigil. By doing so we are indeed able to say with hand on heart, "at the going down of the sun, we will remember them".

Bruce Owen, Bombay.

Letting aggressors win

I felt incredibly sad on hearing the Anzac services throughout the country were to be scaled back for security reasons. This is a sacred day for most New Zealanders so do we let a tragedy stand in the way of normality? I am not suggesting we push the Christchurch shootings out of our mind, but we do need to move on and remember this at the appropriate time each year. I speak as a daughter of an Anzac veteran and the niece of another Anzac veteran who gave his life for our freedom. Scaling back of services that we hold in memory of people like them seems to me to let aggressor(s) win.

Margaret Wyatt, Tauranga.

On Census

Not to worry, or brag, but statistically my holiday home doesn't exist either, along with many others.


S. Symes, Eastern Beach.

Vaccination value

Thank you Hylton Le Grice for bravely telling us your story of contracting poliomyelitis in your teenage years and of its consequences. When I read of this in your really insightful and interesting letter, with which I agree, it brought to mind the wonderful book I read many years ago. Over My Dead Body was a captivating story of a very brave woman and perhaps this book should again be in circulation. If the anti-vaccination parents take the time to read it, the story may change their minds about the ill-advised decision they have made and save many lives now and in the years to come.

Andrea Dorn, Meadowbank.

On anti-vax

Much of the misinformation about vaccination is spread by young mothers over the coffee cups. Fortunately my daughter thought to tell me. Perhaps it's time to ban all unvaccinated children from play centres and childcare facilities.

Pamela Russell, Ōrakei.

Kauri's fate

Phil Goff's new salary of $300,000 per annum is equivalent to $1000 for every year of growth achieved by the precious taonga of a Titirangi kauri. As a healthy specimen of a threatened species, that tree is particularly valuable but its doom is imminent. A mayor who entered office vowing to green Auckland should be preserving our urban flora. Or were Goff's promises mere Guff?

Jane Margaret Sadler, Remuera.

Travelling companion

The interview by Jane Mulkerrins with Joseph Fiennes in the Weekend Herald about his Egyptian adventures with his uncle Sir Ranulph Fiennes contains a small but important error. It says Ranulph, on his 1979-1982 Transglobe Expedition, travelled around the world on its polar axis using only surface transport and "remains the only person to have ever done so". In fact through every part of that magnificent journey he was accompanied by Charles R. Burton (1942-2002).

I used to know Charlie Burton, a fine fellow, and don't want to see him robbed of his share of the enduring glory.

Brian McDonnell, Grey Lynn.

On Prince

I'm not sure it's appropriate for a future king to cozy up to a country's security services but if it is, no doubt Prince William, who will one day be our monarch, will be given the opportunity to spend time with our security services.

Mike Jarman, One Tree Hill.

Pipedream project

I have considerable sympathy for Phil Twyford over the rolling debacle that is KiwiBuild. It was never a policy, it was a back-of-the-envelope election slogan conjured up by a party which didn't think it had the slightest chance of getting into Government. Now it has the impossible task of trying to implement a utopian pipedream. The shambles would have been the same no matter who was in charge.

Brian O'Neill, Chatswood.


Correspondent Andrew Tichbon blames "religious nonsense" for the overwhelming negative public response to the End of Life Choice Bill. Secular New Zealand is in constant danger of being hijacked by anti-religious bigots. I suggest a more tolerant secularism is preferable and, in a secular democracy, this means religious Kiwis can vote and make submissions to select committees.

Gavan O'Farrell, Lower Hutt.

Petrol inquiry

The Christchurch massacre and the gun law change news has completely swept the petrol price issue off people's radar. There is no news now of the committee formed to investigate the subject.

No outcome yet even though it has been a long time since and the prices are still high. Can the process be restarted to get a favourable outcome soon, please?

Sunil Saxena, Manurewa.