The English family of a victim in the skydiving crash are getting pretty worked up about what they believe are slack standards, and urging people to not visit NZ because it’s unsafe.
That’s understandable really and we sympathise with their loss. But it’s a bit ridiculous to be labelling NZ unsafe. Accidents and poor decisions can kill in any country, any time.
Britain is not immune to accidents and death and as a person who has travelled twice to Britain and both times been tangled up in the mayhem and murder of people in their hundreds, blown apart by terrorist bombs, I wouldn’t be rushing back there any time soon. But until now I haven’t felt the need to bag that country internationally because of it.
When a country needs missiles and massive military presence to hold a sporting event, while NZ managed to run a rugby world cup (with the greatest threat coming from the odd drunk Welsh streaker) without anywhere near the firepower that England has amassed for the Olympics, that’s a fair indication of which country might be the safer.
Planes crash in the UK too. Some of them because of lacking standards, some because of human error and poor decisions. Some are blown up on purpose by people who blatantly intend to kill. (Lest we forget Lockerbie.)
At least we don’t have to contend with that.
Granted, folk need to vent in the case of losing a family member in such a tragic way as the Fox Glacier air crash. But this was not an outcome that anyone wanted or intended. Needless to say, if anyone could foresee it, things would be done differently.
Not so the security threats over Britain. Those mongrels mean to kill and will do so again. Yes, push for more safety measures, learn from mistakes, but telling people to avoid this country because it is unsafe is simply ignorant and a knee-jerk reaction to a terrible tragedy.
Adventure tourism comes with inherent risks; that’s what makes it exciting for young people, especially, to push the boundaries and sadly, there will occasionally be casualties. It’s that whiff of danger that adds to the excitement. People choose to take on these risky pursuits and know well that sometime, somewhere, it could go horribly wrong.
We can take all the precautions in the world and tie up the place with red tape; but accidents will still happen and without the thrill of defying danger, adventure tourists might as well stay home and play chess.
Lay back and think of England
RR researchers have been wracking their tiny minds this week to try to come up with something positive and thought-provoking on this whole idea of free contraception for beneficiaries.
But really all we see is the tragedy… that it wasn’t available when Sue Bradford’s parents were fooling around.
So for this week we’ll just have to continue with the usual puerile name calling and cheap shots at prominent figures. It’s going well so far.
And speaking of prominent figures, one of the drawbacks of wide screen TVs means that Paula Bennett just keeps getting bigger and bigger.
If that isn’t scary enough, we’ve also got Mr Dotcom looming larger than ever from the lounge wall.
When we see Brownlee approaching, we have to change channels so he doesn’t break the frame.
There could be a case for worrying less about birth control and more about girth control.
Perhaps the image of Paula produces a contraceptive effect of its own. And rather than using drugs, the guvmint should consider giving every beneficiary a framed portrait of the Honourable Member to hang above their beds, with the effect of discouraging the entry of dishonourable members.
It worked for decades with the Queen.
It’s all a bit ironic, with Mothers’ Day approaching.
Great place to be a mum
Finally, happy mothers’ day to all our mums out there. It’s a great place to be a mother. In fact, the fourth best place in the world. Even better than England.
The statistics come from Save the Children’s annual State of the World’s Mothers report. Niger ranks at the very bottom. The ranking compares 165 countries around the world, looks at factors such as a mother’s health, education and economic status, as well as critical child indicators such as health and nutrition.
The report shows that 7 out of 10 worst countries in which to be a mother (Afghanistan, Chad, Eritrea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger and Yemen) are in the midst of a food crisis. Six out of these ten countries have seen an increase in stunting over the past two decades – where children’s mental and physical growth is permanently blighted by malnutrition. Save the Children estimates that over the next 15 years 450 million children’s brains and bodies will not develop fully because of stunting.
A good time to give thanks that we live in a land of Plenty; one of the safest countries in the world, with enviable health standards and awesome mothers. Cheers, Mum!