WITH great fanfare, the Government announced additional funding to support veterans and their families to the tune of $4.1 million.

My initial reaction was wow! Then it became clear this was spread over four years, making it just over $1m a year, somewhat diminishing the wow factor.

There are some 31,000 veterans in New Zealand. Divide the $1.025m by 31,000 and it equates to around an additional $132 per veteran per year. What an insult. I wonder how far $132 goes toward ongoing specialist treatment that is often required?

This Government needs to realign its priorities. These veterans have given their all to ensure we, including the politicians at the trough called the Beehive, can live in a peaceful and safe environment.

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Stop giving the likes of Shane Jones $1 billion to waste on hare-brained schemes in Northland and the likes, and give our veterans the worthwhile recognition they deserve.
They should not have to rely upon public-funded welfare handouts from the RSA.

ROBERT ALLEN
Durie Hill


Compassion drives bill

Moira Floresta (Letters, April 25) says David Seymour is spreading "misinformation" about his End of Life Choice Bill.

This is certainly not the case — he simply refuses to be influenced by unsubstantiated views and beliefs from groups who oppose medically- assisted dying, instead reflecting the wishes of the 70 per cent plus of New Zealanders who want this legalised here.

This bill is based on exceptionally thorough research by lawyers, doctors, palliative care specialists, researchers and hospices from jurisdictions that allow medically assisted dying. The fact that not one of these jurisdictions has repealed their assisted dying laws should be testament that they are working, democracy is prevailing and the people are relieved they have a choice, should circumstances at the end of their lives become unbearable.

Compassion for those who do not wish to die in unrelievable pain, with loss of bodily control and quality of life is the driver for this bill. Thanks to David Seymour for recognising that this is needed and wanted.

HELEN CARTMELL
Silverstream, Upper Hutt


The problem with Folau

The media beat-up of Israel Folau over his "anti-gay and transgender social media postings" (Stuff) has been a fascinating insight to media bias, the workings of the Press and the very post-modernist proverb, "never let the truth get in the way of a good story".

Folau's postings have been variously described as an "outburst", "tirade" "rant" and "anti-gay slur".

The unmentioned fact is that in 2014, Folau was the promotional face of the Bingham Cup, the biennial world championships for gay and inclusive rugby. A Bingham Cup spokesperson is quoted as saying that "at the time Folau was a strong advocate for ending all forms of discrimination in sport".

The problem with Israel Folau is that he believes the Bible and has the affront to speak and remind all people to repent from their ungodly ways and to turn to Jesus Christ for salvation. If you don't believe that God exists and that you won't be judged for your thoughts and actions, that shouldn't cause you any problem.

And if you don't believe in an actual hell, talk of hell is merely empty words, not hate speech. And if the resurrected Jesus Christ is merely a myth and those who trust in Him for salvation are deluded, then more fool them.

What is truly offensive is that Folau, and others, even dare to warn our culture of what the Bible says. Are we afraid it might actually be the truth? Now, that is an unspeakable anathema. Shut it down by all possible means.

If that involves fabricating a shock story that sells papers, discriminates against believers in Jesus Christ and fuels talkback Christophobia, so much the better!

The irony is the poster boy for inclusiveness in sport is himself being excluded from the sport.

JOHN MALCOLM
St John's Hill


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