For Bruce Logan (NZ Herald, February 10), diversity and inclusion are a seductive cult, tolerance is sentimental codswallop in disguise, and all three are a "provisional parasite", whatever that is.
I grew up in Auckland in the 1970s before leaving in 1984 to live overseas before returning in 1993. The contrast between 1984 and 1993 was startling.
The dull, provincial, heavily regulated, uptight Britishness of the Muldoon years and prior had gone.
Asian faces were common in Queen St and a proliferation of cafes and restaurants serving international food had replaced instant coffee and "meat and three veg".
Homosexual sex was no longer a crime and the prime minister no longer told us which kinds of music qualified as culture.
The dawn raids were only 15 years in the past, but seemed to belong to a shameful, primitive and unenlightened time.
More recently, an influx of people from the Middle East and South America has added to the mix of cultures and further improved the choice of food.
Law changes mean we no longer persecute sex workers and we allow people to marry whomever they like.
For Logan, New Zealand has been divesting itself of a shared and confident vision of nationhood for much of his lifetime. For much of mine, it has been growing and developing that vision.
Rowan Hill, Mt Eden.
Bruce Logan's article on retaining our National Anthem (NZ Herald, February 10) is the most incisive piece of writing I have seen in a very long time.
His views are totally on point and I applaud his reasoning. The call to change it is fraught with blinkered ideology.
Congratulations Bruce, for balancing the argument with some good old fashioned patriotism and common sense.
Gavin Sheehan, Greenhithe.
The national anthem, like our flag, will always be difficult to please everyone. But older countries like America and France are quite happy to retain anthems written hundreds of years ago about something pertinent at the time.
The words of our second verse seem particularly appropriate today and, since we sing the same sentiments twice in our two national languages, why not have the first verse, as now, in Māori and sing the second, "Men of every creed and race ..." in English? The words there seem particularly applicable for our multi-cultural country of today. The only change probably desirable would be to have "we" or "those" instead of "men".
As more of us learn te reo, we would understand all the sentiments expressed. The other improvement I would recommend would be to have it played and sung at a faster clip. The tune is not suited to the slow speed we often hear.
P Belsham, Mt Albert.
Bruce Logan argues that we must retain the current National Anthem because he states "it was written with genuine affection during a period of national and cultural coherence". The National Anthem was written in 1876, in the aftermath of the devastating New Zealand wars. The national and cultural coherence Logan wistfully talks about, only exists if you totally disregard the viewpoints of Māori, and many non-English settlers.
Albertien Chignell, Mt Eden.
The runway problems at Auckland Airport could be solved if there was a second one. There has been provision for a second runway for many years but, alas, it has been delayed by resource consents and a desire to save birds and trees.
We could blame AIAL, but I suspect that they are not completely at fault; but rather hamstrung by minority groups, councils and politicians arguing over pointless drama and things that don't actually exist.
A second runway is vital to the New Zealand gateway of Auckland. Whilst it remains on paper, infrequent but costly delays are going to continue, as will the handwringing.
John Ford, Taradale.
Auckland Airport is by far the major entry and exit point into New Zealand, a role vital for the country.
The absolutely priority for the board and management must be to keep it operational at all times. They have failed to do this by not ensuring the runway is maintained in top condition, resulting in closures (NZ Herald, February 8).
This is an appalling situation. Shane Jones - once again in his direct, straight-talking way - has quite rightly castigated the board for their failure.
I visit the international terminal at Auckland airport regularly, and it has been obvious in recent years that a great deal of investment has been made in yet more duty free shops and restaurants.
This earns the airport money, more than investment in the runway. It is another example of highly paid chief executives running riot with their egos when in charge of essential public facilities. Radio NZ is another.
Russell O Armitage, Hamilton.
In reply to Veronique Cornille's letter (NZ Herald, February 11) suggesting Auckland Airport made a poor choice in ripping out a free for all viewing area, replacing it with, in her own words, "high yielding commercial space", I suggest that's the answer right there. The new space earns revenue, the old model did not. How is this not a sound business decision for all concerned?
Leanne Schou, Onehunga.
I read Aucklanders are asked to take four-minute showers to help stretch a dwindling resource (NZ herald, February 10).
Since living in Western Australia where water is expensive, I have been taking a "submarine shower". That is, step in, turn water on, wet and turn off. Lather up, then rinse.
The water runs for less than one minute, saving the city an additional 60 million litres a day.
While you're at it, ditch that hand held shower head on the dangly hose. It takes a minute for any temperature adjustment to take effect. That's water down the drain.
Clearly water is too cheap.
Ian Swney, Morrinsville
Following my letter on the standard of driving in New Zealand (NZ Herald, February 7), people have commented personally and in print that they agree with me. Several have also asked what I would do about it.
Road deaths and injuries could be significantly reduced by the stroke of a governmental pen. $80 for the use of a hand held mobile phone is trivial and we need to bring that closer to that applying to other countries; let's start at $300 - $400. Likewise, $30 for driving at up to 10 kph over the limit is not worth the effort of collection; $300 would get people sitting up and taking notice and the same for running a red light or a stop sign would also grab people's attention.
I've chosen these offences because, in addition to being a major cause of accidents, they also can be detected by cameras but while they attract penalty points when observed by offices, these are not sheeted home to offenders. However, Australia adopts the approach of allocating these to the registered owners who can rightly be considered responsible for the actions of any driver. If they choose not to identify the actual driver they are required to accept the points themselves. Unfair? No, perfectly just.
One further suggestion to address the slaughter which occurs on ever holiday and every long weekend is to follow the NSW lead and at these times the mantra is "Double the fine, double the points" for all offences.
Rod Lyons, Muriwai.
The University of Canterbury has been trialling a method of scanning the brain too see whether a person has information stored that contains known criminal activity.
This technology uses an EEG (electroencephalogram) to detect brainwaves that indicate whether or not a person has specific knowledge contained in their brain. The knowledge may suggest that the tested person was involved in criminal behaviour.
It's guaranteed that government and corporate authorities will use this information by force, as is always the case. This is truly another dimension of invasive meddling. The film Minority Report is upon us. Dystopian fears coming true.
However it was only a matter of time before this sort of human behaviour would evolve.
Unfortunately, it's not a step forward but a huge leap backwards in human liberty.
The thought police are upon us. Beware.
Mark Lewis-Wilson, Mangonui.
Letters: Driving habits, beach party, road workers, Radio NZ, Auckland Airport and Israel
Letters: Roadworks, cone possibilities suspect timing and superior thinking
Letters: National anthem, public space, building inspections, the Blues and teen pressure
Justice is a precious commodity and we all understand how important it is to be seen to be done. But there's another side to that transparency: justice also needs to be heard to be done.
For the second time in a month, I today attended (as a family member of a victim) Waitākere District Court – and for the second time in a month neither I nor my wife could hear much of what was discussed in open court between lawyers, prosecutor, probation officers and judge.
The sound system was totally inadequate and soft, muffled voices (generally uttered with backs turned to the public seating) were eaten up by the high ceilings.
The court later told me they have special loops on request to connect with the sound system if people cannot hear – but who is to know that? There are no signs giving such information.
The concept of open justice hinges to a large extent on the ability of the public to hear what the hell is going on. Simple solution: speak up, or boost the sound system volume.
At the moment, in this court at least, lawyers and judges seem to be running their own private club with no special regard for those outside the loop.
Bruce Morris, Mt Albert.
Short & sweet
In NZ today, 62.3 per cent of NZers own their homes only 33 per cent (and rapidly falling) of those are mortgage free.The slippery slope in NZ mortgage debt owing to banks gets worse when you make a comparison with 1991 when 73.89 per cent of New Zealanders owned their own homes, 83 per cent of which were mortgage free. Gary Hollis, Mellons Bay.
Is it a case of if China sneezes we get a cold. Just look at our Education and Tourism sectors right now. Milton Wong, St Heliers.
On Jojo Rabbit
New Zealand cartoonist David Low was making fun of the Third Reich before World War II even began. So, yes, Nazi Germany is a fair target for satire. C C McDowall, Rotorua.
First World CEO salary. First World shopping services. First World car parking fees. Third world runway. "Auckland we have a problem". Roger Bale, Pukekawa.
My family walked around Mission Bay by the fountain last Saturday. There was rubbish everywhere. What a disgrace, especially given that Mission Bay is a popular tourist destination. A Forsyth, Kohimarama.
Is Trump's "Peace plan" some kind of sick joke? It was never ever going to benefit the Palestinians. Eric Bennett, Red Beach.
An anthem based only on whatever the currently fashionable trend was would see it changed every generation. David Gibbs, Beach Haven.