I would like to thank the people who took the time and effort to clean the graffiti off the pro-life sign on State Highway 3.

Many times when travelling to Palmerston North, I have been cheered to see the noble face of the young mother whose cheek caresses the cherubic face of her child.

Who, I wonder, could take offence at such an uplifting vision?

Who could be so incensed - or maybe so troubled - as to take the risk of trespassing on private property and defacing such an innocuous image?

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What has caused some people to be so bitter and troubled that they would strike at women and children, the very ones for whom wars have been fought and trials have been suffered in order to protect.

The graffiti on the sign said: "Against abortion? Don't have one." I wholeheartedly agree, please don't have an abortion.

However, I believe our responsibility goes further. We especially ought to care for the weak and vulnerable, such as someone facing an unexpected or crisis pregnancy.

Since we do love our neighbour, we want to care for and protect both the mother and child.

It makes me think that when people feel so bad about their actions, they want to draw others in so that it seems "normal" by being a common experience. When I was growing up this was referred to as "misery loving company".

May we assure the person involved there are many folk in our caring community who would be overjoyed to help you.

I would encourage the person who defaced the sign to seek that help - far from being vindictive or angry, we forgive you.

A E VAATSTRA
Whanganui East

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Alien signals
News out of Australia tells us there are 20 possible alien signals that their cosmic listening devices have detected.

Presumably they have eliminated the bleating of sheep in their dry, barren country or that of their population having to cope with a fundamentalist prime minister who is just another in what is now a long line of dysfunctional people in the position.

Could it be that after 2000 years of silence, "God" and his host of angels are returning from the outer reaches of our universe, if not alternate universes, at over the speed of light? Dying on crosses for the cause on billions of habitable planets does take a bit of time, after all.

Presumably this time around, "God" - if the deity is the source of the signals - could set up an email address and a social media account to make its intention more transparent to us ignorant masses.

One would assume such a deity would be able to deal with the inevitable trolls, who are probably the spawn of Satan anyway.

PAUL C EVANS
Aramoho


Rising fuel prices
Rod Anderson (Chronicle; November 2) blames "Queen Jacinda" for "the increased cost of driving the kilometres it takes to get the goods to their destinations", citing diesel road tax increases.

As much as we all love our prime minister, she is only a minor player in determining the cost of diesel and petrol.

Since Donald Trump's May 2018 Iran sanctions, prices have risen steeply at New Zealand service stations, Saudi Arabia's economy is prospering again and Mohammed bin Salman can afford to pay for his American weaponry.

FRED FREDERIKSE
Papaiti


Rich source of food
Just in case speculation may become "history", the great Polynesian explorer Kupe would never have gone hungry in what is now Castlecliff.

In those days, the mouth of the Whanganui was a large delta containing shellfish beds inland to the vicinity of what is now Landguard Bluff.

Kokohuia, the large wetland which is now the industrial hub of Castlecliff, was named after the mating ritual of the now extinct bird.

And Kokohuia was also a mahinga kai, a food gathering place - inanga, tuna, kakahi, kereru, tui, pukeko, rakau ti (cabbage tree) raupo kai and building material from one plant.

That wonderful wetland was called a swamp (worthless) by the early settlers - even though their first houses were built with raupo.

In the 1940s, both sides of Heads Rd were already rubbish dumps containing all the old one gallon petrol tins. How sad.

Oh, I forgot about the kokopu - kokabully to the pakeha - the mature whitebait. No, no one ever went hungry here in those days.

POTONGA NEILSON
Kaihau Kupe (Castlecliff)


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Reader Pic:

This could be Whanganui if the anticipated hot, dry summer eventuates, but for now it's a photo from Joan Firmin-Jones of her grandchildren, Page, Amber and Caleb riding camels in the Sahara desert, Morocco.

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