More letters to the editor show concerns about our changing planet and its effects on life. It is a powerful way for writers to remind, coerce and inform, hoping someone will strike the right chord to bring all countries together in this crisis. I applaud the Herald's decision to print many of these letters and to keep up their choice of commentary on the matter from excellent news sources worldwide.
Saturday's paper had Washington Post's journalist Helaine Olen's comments on the United Nations report. Headed: "We are threatening the biodiversity that makes our way of life possible", she sets out to explore comments, reflections, behaviour and effects on all forms of life. But, in the end, it is down to us, the voters of the world, to make the choice for the future.
Our young have begun this massive movement for change and we, the older citizens, must join them. We need to take hold, take back the cancerous intrusions we are all perpetrating on this planet and force the changes necessary. We also need a leader of quality and command to stand on this moral platform to lead the way.
But do we have the inclination? It would require a huge change in not only what we do in our daily lives, but also how we grow the economy. It would require businesses to promote a more life-sustaining process. What is going on in politics today is important, but the energy going in to make these changes, meeting other world leaders, should really be on behalf of our environment and climate change. Fiddle while Rome burns comes to mind. When millions start leaving their devastated homelands for safer venues, what will today's concerns matter?
As Helaine Olen concluded: "To refuse to make the changes is a giant insult to all of humanity, but especially our children and grandchildren who will be forced to live with the consequences of our current inaction."
Emma Mackintosh, Birkenhead.
The referendum on decriminalising cannabis follows recent publicity regarding the meth scourge. A Christchurch Health and Development study revealed cannabis use was associated with educational delay, psychosis, depression, increased motor accidents and greater risk of other illicit drug use.
Canada's new law on legal cannabis attracted comment from the Canadian Medical Association, "an uncontrolled experiment in which the profits of cannabis producers and tax revenues are pitched against the health of Canadians", and Radio Canada revealed the financial backers of some producers had links to organised crime, a contradiction for NZ reformers to consider. This evidence suggests liberalising marijuana laws is the wrong path to pursue if we care about public health and safety and our young people.
P. J. Edmondson, Tauranga.
Bravo to Steve Braunias, whose Secret Diary of Trevor Mallard was the best piece of political commentary I've read in years. His inference that Mallard is hearing-impaired is both cleverly conceived and hilariously exposed, with the added benefit of providing a plausible excuse for the Speaker for the allegations of bias and bullying against him.
Letters: Wharf extension, Israel Folau and Child poverty
Tax changes, cannabis referendum, Israel Folau and Simon Cowell
R N Mirkin, Muriwai Beach.
Inequality, war, climate change and ecological degradation, ill-health, violence and community breakdown, drug misuse — these are all symptoms. Until we focus on what the disease might be, we are lost.
Joy Edwards, Coatesville.
Recently I attempted to book a holiday. Brochure stated $1789 per person, share. The travel consultant came up with $3002 because I was single. What terrible discrimination. Hotels and accommodation providers glaringly discriminate against singles yet we use less bed linen and fewer towels, so what else is the reason. Profit? Singles are also discriminated against hugely by supermarkets when they state spend over $200 or $300 and get certain discounts. As a single person I will never spend that much, so I miss out on discounts. Grossly unfair. So come on singles, let's demand no discrimination. ME ONE.
Keith Aldrige, Birkdale.
A shop doesn't determine an avocado price, nor does the grower or seller. It's determined by a lack of supply to the current demand from consumers as to where the cost will ultimately reach.
If you don't want to part with 10 bucks for an avocado , walk past them; it is not the season for them anyhow. The best way to stretch your dollar for fresh fruit and vegetables is buying in season throughout the year.
This may mean eating less glamorous items from time to time, but you'll also get produce that is at its peak for flavour and nutrition.
Glenn Forsyth, Taupō.
A new high-density subdivision being built near Ōtāhuhu on the quarried away site of Te Apunga-o-Tainui/McLennan Hills Volcano has been named Richmond. How inappropriate! Mt Richmond/Ōtāhuhu Volcano is 1km away to the southwest. How many residents moving in will realise that their precinct has been wrongly named? Why has Auckland Council accepted this name? Are they trying to hide the fact that many of Auckland's volcanoes have been damaged or destroyed by us? Why not use the Maori and European names commemorating the landing of the Tainui canoe on its shores 600 years ago, and Ewan McLennan, local MP, 1925-28.
Bruce Hayward, Remuera.
Regarding ME awareness: Millions of folk around the world suffer from this serious and complex illness. Indeed there are thousands in New Zealand. It has had a bad rap over the years. Patients have been gaslighted, isolated and treated abhorrently in the medical profession due to the stigma surrounding it. However there is light at the end of the tunnel. New research is proving it to be a biological not psychological condition, comparable and even worse than having cancer or HIV. The Herald has just spent a week reporting on cancer. I would like to see a week of reporting on ME. Millions are missing.
Sharon Jameson, Cambridge.
The young person who offered the Prime Minister $5 to fund research into dragons and psychics approached it all wrong. If they had asked the Government to set up a working group they'd have had their money by now.
Jonathan Jepson, Torbay.
The 2019 Political Believability Index survey finding that New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is more believable than any of Australia's major politicians is hardly surprising. Many Australians will tell you that!
Rajend Naidu, Sydney.
Beauden Barrett is an All Black first-five starter, so is Richie Mo'unga. Other than that, in Super Rugby, all other first-fives are equal to one another. However, the Blues should get Jordie Barrett as their starting No10. Trust me, he is exactly like Beauden and Damian McKenzie, awesome at fullback, then move to first-five. The only difference is he can do longer penalty kicks than anybody else, which is a bonus. The only downfall is 1: Hurricanes will lose a great fullback and 2: The Blues will probably have to pay about $1,000,000. Conversely, for the 2019 Rugby World Cup, I know Jordie will be on the bench as a fullback and first-five for the hard pool games. Furthermore, he will start as fullback in the easy pool games. In conclusion, Super Rugby would be way more hyped up if it was Beaudy v Jordie at fly-half!
Sento Mehlhopt, Albany.
I see the Herald is now referring to world leaders by their first name in its headlines. I look forward to seeing what Theresa, Donald and Emmanuel get up to next week. Alternatively, you could gently educate your sub-editors.
Adele Little, Mt Eden.
I'd like to put my hand up on behalf of all the adulterers, thieves, drunkards, liars, fornicators, atheists and idolaters — sorry we have been quiet until now.
We're a busy lot and because of the nature of our activities we are also pretty understanding of people casting aspersions about us; it comes with the territory.
We practise tolerance and we would like to be treated with tolerance when we get caught — rather than having to drunkenly shimmy down a rain-pipe, our undies round our ankles, with arms full of loot. We prefer not to highlight how different we are from other members of the community as we believe in a low profile and inclusiveness. We don't kick up a fuss every time someone complains about crime (we know they are talking about us) as this becomes counter-productive. And we're not paranoid but there really are people after us.
Many of us plan on making a quick, and probably spurious, confession to a convenient idol or thin air, whatever does the job — just before we shrug off this mortal coil, thereby we can dodge hellfire and damnation — so take that, Israel.
Dr Mike Schmidt, Dunedin.