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No respect for people of provinces

Opinion Piece
Letter

Isn’t free speech a wonderful thing — and thank you to all those who fought and died for us to retain it. However, when a politician publicly bullies people who have concerns and refers to them as rednecks, then I believe free speech is threatened.

According to my dictionary, redneck means “a poor uneducated white farm worker” or “reactionary and bigoted”. I find his description offensive and racist.

Shane Jones claimed the march to Parliament by supporters of rural and provincial New Zealand on Thursday was not showing respect to the Prime Minister. That’s simply not true. It was a phrase he chose to justify his outburst.

I’ve heard there was an offensive poster. I didn’t see it. If I had, I’d have removed it.

There were several hundred posters Jones chose to ignore that highlighted the dire state of the provinces as a result of Government policies. He obviously has no respect for the people of the provinces.

On Thursday, approximately 1200 people marched through Wellington and gathered on the steps of Parliament. This was a peaceful march by people who are so frustrated with the current Government’s refusal to listen to them.

These are very busy people in the peak of the seasonal workload, so they have not gone to Wellington for a day out. To then be treated with so much disrespect is in my opinion a disgrace to the position Shane Jones holds.

This march was about the cost to NZ that is not being discussed. The ETS is reportedly going to cost this country $200 billion. This equates to around $170 per household each week for the next 30 years. I think that is worth discussing.

I’d ask what benefit this will bring to ordinary Kiwis. The answer is none, except for the carbon farmers who are going to get rich. It appears from the latest news that some of the NZ First party are on that bandwagon.

Can I say thank you to all those people from all over the country, Maori, European and Asian, who came to Wellington for the march — and the thousands of others who supported us by wearing green. Hopefully you will make a difference.

Andy Scott, President, 50 Shades of Green