Whilst somewhat predictable, the response by R Prince and B Johnson (SunLive, January 5) to my support of Maori wards (SunLive, December 29) is disappointing.
Inference can be a powerful weapon in debate, but I did not accuse R Prince of misrepresenting the views of Dr McDonnell, I simply point out the doctor's views are many and varied.
When expressing his opinion that "it is time to pull back to the centre" perhaps he's right, but where does the centre lie, and who decides? Do we continue to deny Maori interest groups their democratic rights by denying them the opportunity to represent themselves, in order to protect the privilege of the majority, or are we better than that?
B Johnson claims such representation to be "a subversion of democracy". There is no absolute version of democracy. It is flexible. Our fate in these matters was sealed with the signing of a binding treaty. The use of divisive rhetoric such as apartheid, separatism and now subversion, as applied to possible Maori representation, is surely nothing short of extremism and perhaps desperation.
R Bell, Omanawa (Abridged).
Correspondence on this thread is now closed.