Letter of the week
I am offended. A friend told me Santa Claus won't bring me any presents this year because I haven't been a good boy. I don't believe in Santa Claus, I don't follow him on Twitter and I don't believe in getting presents for being a good boy. However, I am highly offended at this blatant discrimination against bad boys and demand Santa be censored for his hateful ideology and speech. This kind of discrimination has no place in today's modern society.
Kent Millar, Blockhouse Bay
I read with interest the Easter message in Saturday's Weekend Herald (April 23) from 26 leaders of Auckland churches.
In the opening sentences, they express their condemnation of the Christchurch massacre, and their horror that such an atrocity could occur in New Zealand.
The article then goes on to expound their beliefs about Jesus and extols the life he lived and the values he preached. We are told Jesus urged us to love our neighbours as ourselves, to show compassion, mercy, goodwill, and to live in peace. The article concludes with the message that "love overcomes hatred".
Since the Christchurch massacre we have witnessed an outpouring of such compassion and love towards the victims of that terrible day - it came from New Zealanders of all persuasions, young and old, religious and non-religious, Maori and Pakeha, long term citizens and recent arrivals. And a week after the massacre we listened, and were overcome by the words of forgiveness and reconciliation that came from leaders of the Muslim community, including those who were victims of the tragedy. They showed us "love overcoming hatred".
But our church leaders, in Saturday's article. offered no such words of sympathy, no expressions of condolence to the victims of the massacre, no reaching out to them in the hope that this event will draw us together. All the words they wrote were empty and meaningless without the words that cried out to be uttered when such an opportunity was given them by the Herald
Laurie Wesley, Birkenhead
Recent events in this country have shown the vulnerability of those who choose to exercise their right to worship with freedom. Indeed, many of our churches have had an armed police presence outside during Easter services. Churches did not request this, but the police felt it necessary because of the ongoing level of threat, with places of worship as a likely target. Over Easter weekend in Sri Lanka, bomb attacks on churches have shown that these actions are not limited to one faith.
We are at a delicate point in our social history. Faith can be a source of further division, or part of the power to unite. Muslim people were present at Auckland's Anglican Cathedral on Easter Day because of the friendship and respect that we have for one another. They handed out Easter eggs to worshippers after the service. In a few weeks, our cathedral will host Muslim friends for a meal during Ramadan when they break their fast for the day. These are examples of the power of faith to unite across difference, and to build understanding and respect. It has greatly saddened me that this was so disrespected by the Emmerson cartoon at the holiest time of the year for Christian faith.
Ross Bay, Anglican Bishop of Auckland
I am absolutely disgusted by your cartoon of the crucifixion and comparing this to capital gains tax. In view of what recently happened in Christchurch where the Muslim faith was embraced it seemed like New Zealand was finally moving in the right direction in becoming respectful towards religion. Unfortunately this does not include respect towards Christianity as it seems an acceptable thing in New Zealand to mock the Christian faith. I cannot see our Muslim, Jewish, Hindu brothers and sisters and members of any other religion accepting their religious beliefs being mocked in such a way.
Audrene Samuel, Hastings
Your correspondent Jens Meder (Weekend Herald, April 20) acknowledges the vital role of capital in our economy. Quite so, because without capital we would still unload ships using block and tackle. The writer then proposes to have the capital evenly distributed
among all citizens. This has already been tried in an experiment that involved 300 million people and lasted 70 years, during which the "workers owned the means of production". It was called communism, and we all know how well that went.
K. H. Peter Kammler, Warkworth
A quick word
The photo of our Prime Minister on Page C2 of Saturday's Weekend Herald looks like a painting by one of the old masters. Let us be brave in this age of foolish confusion about gender, and openly admit Ardern is a beautiful woman. And no, I did not vote Labour.
John Hampson, Meadowbank
How insensitive of the Herald to print Saturday's cartoon! In light of recent events we are all supposed to be respectful of each other's beliefs. This was anything but respectful.
Norma Penman, Hillsborough
Rod Emmerson omitted his customary "With apologies to…" in Saturday's cartoon. Some readers may have mistakenly thought the cultural reference was to the death of Jesus, a Galilean rabbi executed by the Romans nearly 2000 years ago. The biography of his less well known contemporary, a man called Brian, was written by the distinguished historian Monty Python. Emmerson should have realised not everyone has seen the dramatised documentary about the life and death of this Brian.
Arch Thomson, Mt Wellington
It's ironical and hypocritical at a time like the present when groups everywhere, including the Government, are pleading for tolerance and respect for people's beliefs, that the Weekend Herald newspaper should choose to print a cartoon at Easter that is defamatory and offensive to the Christians of our nation.
J E Martin, Cambridge
Didymo is destroying our precious waterways and human movement is the known cause for its spread. Why are we not then shutting access to all the waterways in the country?
Min Lo, Remuera
Even though the polls show 76 per cent want to retain the name Crusaders, watch the other 24 per cent go to work to stop the majority getting their way. Their idea of democracy.
Jock MacVicar, Hauraki
Thanks to the John Key-led government following the GFC our country was left financially sound. Hate to think what might have happened under the current bunch of ineptitudes.
A J Petersen, Kawerau
While Jacinda Adern is moralising the world on hate speech, she seems to have forgotten her home country's disgusting record of violence and neglected wellbeing. It would be nice to think that our Prime Minister would address NZ's issues first, before accusing others of neglect and being immoral.
Neil Hatfull, Warkworth
The best bang for your buck for high-end shopping would be your local gang headquarters – stolen goods, illegal drugs, semi-automatic rifles; they must have quite a catalogue now.
Glenn Forsyth, Taupo