- Paua poacher’s costly collect
- Bay Oval’s heavyweight clash
- Blossoming support for Daffodil Day
- Jailed for sexual assault
- Kitchen fire in Pyes Pa
- Family welcome guilty verdicts
- Alleged weedeater thief arrested
- Jenkins claims aquathon title
- Abused cabbies seek police action
- Sun retreats as rain moves in
- Tauranga lawyer struck off
- Tauranga in the trenches
- Drivers cash in on loophole
- Convicted shooters back in court
- What’s in the bag?
- Close encounter with orca
- Port death: victim named
- Disgraced cop suffering rare dementia
- Worker dies after reported fall
- Bridge death to air on TV
- Roundabout confusion prompts warning
- Time for a trade-in
- Paengaroa crash driver in hospital
- Speed a factor in Welcome Bay crash
- Crash survivors meet ‘unsung heroes'
- Mount clothing burglar jailed
- Complaint about port death
- Banned ship headed to port
- Siblings admit kidnapping
- Ready for the city’s homeless
Cooking up a storm
Spokesperson for the Green Party
Morally appropriate behaviour is not generated reliably by a vague threat of incarceration. Behavioural science has known for decades that it is immediacy of reward and punishment that drives behavioural choices.
To a mixing pot, add some poverty, a limited sense of social responsibility, violence as a normal life experience, boredom, and perhaps some mind-altering substances.
Stir in a policeman as threat, and a violent upheaval becomes unsurprising. Any notion of consequence is lost in the actions of the moment.
It is utterly ridiculous, and totally unacceptable, that a policeman is attacked while doing his job. But equally ridiculous is the idea that a greater threat will solve the problem.
The Kawhia policeman was armed with pepper spray, a taser, and a gun. With those ingredients, he inflamed a tense situation and cooked up a spectacle.
Reduced poverty, better parenting, effective education, mana, and compassion: address these issues at source and unwanted behaviour will slowly fade away.
Ian McLean is a spokesperson for the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand.
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