Recently, I took the opportunity to have my five minutes as a resident to speak at council. What a great idea brought back by Mayor Hamish.

My request was seeking a council-led community discussion around the private sale of fireworks, notably around Guy Fawkes night.

It's become an irrelevant, annoying celebration with fire callouts, hospital admissions and — my beef — distress to thousands of animals.

Sales start November 2 and one can save them and use them at will for another 364 days. My reality for others having their 15 minutes of fun was three weeks of unpredictable noise and animal distress.


Green MP Gareth Hughes has presented to Parliament an 18,000-signature petition seeking a ban on the private sale of fireworks. The Prime Minister has stated she is open to councils' input. So, let's do this.

The very British story of Guy Fawkes was, in fact, an act of terrorism by a radical group of religious zealots. The next night it was King James who lit a bonfire and burnt an effigy of Guy Fawkes (and the Pope) — commemorated since November 5, 1605, and thereafter as Guy Fawkes night.

Guy and his cellmates were "slow hung", disembowelled (alive or nay), and quartered and distributed to the four corners of the kingdom. Finally, their heads were spiked on London Bridge as a warning around civil disobedience. Share that truth with children?

In Australia, the sale of fireworks is banned other than around organised, council-approved events. It costs a family less than the purchase of the fireworks and it is in the company of many; and safely.

Fireworks — yes, but as planned events like New Year's Day, for all to enjoy and which we can all prepare for.


Powerful purchase

"Councillor's electrifying car buy" (Chronicle; December 5):


Clearly councillor Hadleigh Reid makes good decisions for his own purchases, and that tells me he is probably a good councillor if he applies the same judgment to council matters.

The Tesla is a truly magnificent beast, the envy of every "petrolhead". Not only does it outperform almost all petrol cars in that same price range but it costs just $17 for a 500km recharge.

This brings me to the second French Revolution that has now started.

In the first French Revolution, when the populace said: "We are starving, we have no bread", Marie-Antoinette allegedly said: "Well then, eat cake."

In today's French Revolution, the populace cry "We can not afford to put petrol in our cars to get to work" and President Emmanuel Macron replies: "Then buy Teslas."

Anyone who thinks EVs are close to carbon neutral, think again. Typically, it takes the first eight years running on electricity to pay back the carbon footprint of the battery manufacture.

Then again, councillor Reid may know what I know — that extra carbon dioxide is good for our atmosphere as it is the most important plant food of all.


Old culture

Potonga Neilson ("Used to be better for Maori"; December 13) has made the absurd claim that "Life is cheap here in Aotearoa New Zealand, much cheaper than it ever was pre-1840".

He wants to go back to the old culture that so many chiefs had rejected when they called on the British for help and led their cultural revolution with its mass conversion to Christianity, along with the many peace conferences of previously belligerent tribes.

After 1840, the advanced culture, which was welcomed by most Maori, brought the peace and security of a nation state, replacing the widespread, uncontrolled warfare and insecurity of tribal conflict. That should be recognised and celebrated.


Poison perils

Reference Robin Wakeling's letter.

Thank you for publishing a letter that supports those against using poisons for conservation. You have revived the small hope that the media may publish more of the truth instead of relying on propaganda.

As is said in the letter "I am in no doubt that 1080 does more harm than good to our wildlife and native forest."

This last sentence says it all really; poison is not conservation.


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