Harry Brasser (Letters, March 31) thinks that Maori language signage in the library is "absurd".

The Maori Language Commission encourages the use of te reo Maori signs for two reasons: it raises the status of the Maori language and it encourages use of the language.

Think of a couple of children leaving a school at which they have been speaking Maori all day. They go to a library that has only English signs. They learn that outside school and home their Maori language is not respected and is not used. They switch to speaking English.

Maori is a language for everyone, everywhere in New Zealand. It has survived many challenges and now needs active support to revitalise. The signs help, especially in a city that has declared itself bilingual.

Mr Brasser has lost nothing. Those who seek to use New Zealand's own language and pass it on to future generations have gained something. Some of those in the future, Maori-speaking, generations are very likely to be Mr Brasser's own descendants. By supporting revitalisation of te reo Maori he could support their right to a language that anchors them in their own land and is a mark of national identity and pride.

Tumuaki (chief executive), Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Maori

Congratulations to your correspondents Wairangi Jones and Elaine Shelton (Letters, April 5), for their positive stance on bilingual signs in the Rotorua Library.

Bilingual signage abounds in Scotland, Ireland and Wales, as well as throughout Europe. Moreover, has your correspondent Harry Brasser forgotten that Rotorua is New Zealand's first official bilingual city? (A fact of which we should be proud).

I suggest that he, and other correspondents of his ilk, do their homework on this important issue.



Forget the fairy tales

According to a person on Facebook feedback (Rotorua Daily Post, April 4) the Bible is a book of fairy tales.

In that case if people don't believe in the reason for Christmas and Easter, why don't we just drop these holidays from the calendar and let those who believe quietly celebrate what the Bible says is the reason for them.

As a Christian, I am sick of Christmas being taken over by a fairy tale man in a red suit and reindeer who fly and Easter by a fairy tale fluffy bunny that apparently lays eggs everywhere.

I much prefer the Bible reason and I don't think I could survive without the Reason for the Seasons in my life.

As they say, "each to his own".


The 1929 rail map. Photo/Supplied
The 1929 rail map. Photo/Supplied

Railway tracks

I was at the museum in Nelson earlier this year and came across two very interesting maps of the North and South Islands showing the railways tracks that were in use in 1929.

What struck me was the amount of tracks (3200 route miles) and the numbers of people carried (in the two years up to 1929, 52 million people) I assume that based on the numbers per trip.

Of interest also was the areas these tracks covered.

Having seen this it is a shame that so many rail tracks have been destroyed. Just imagine if they were still available, the transport system in this country would be very different.

Lake Tarawera

Since when can an employee (Geoff Williams, chief executive, RLC) tell his bosses (councillors, RLC) when and how they can consult their customers (ratepayers, RLC)?