Marama Davidson lays into the blame game

The degree to which Marama Davidson takes her arguments here is alarming, especially for a political party leader.

While most of the country is coming together with a common purpose of sympathy and empathy, she seems to be intent on blaming and dividing.

Yesterday from her speech in Ministerial Statements — Mosque Terror Attacks—Christchurch

I know that we must work together, all of us, to become an Aotearoa where everyone is safe to pray, or not—an Aotearoa where people are safe to be who they are.

I also acknowledge the calls from those in Muslim communities to ensure that we tell the truth right from the start. I note the Muslim voices highlighting the truth that New Zealand has a long history of colonial policy, discourse, and violence that sought to harm indigenous peoples. As tangata whenua, I am aware that we need to build connections now more than ever, to heal, and to create loving futures for everyone.

There are some major contradictions in this.

So what do we do now? I am energised by the signs of people now reflecting on their own bias and prejudice and committing to fighting racism with all their might.

We have a big shift ahead of us. We have lessons to learn. We have conversations to have. It’s just that this seems like it was too big a price to pay to get us to this point. In closing, to our Muslim communities, we love you, not just because you are us, but because you are you. Kia ora.

Davidson needs to learn that those of us who have some colonial history in our whanau are also part of ‘us’.

She is correct in saying “we must work together, all of us” – she just needs to learn what that actually means, and she needs to learn that divisive speech is contrary to what she is imploring here.

 

Capitalism causes loneliness

And colonialism.

And – to put it bluntly – if that’s what loneliness is, and capitalism and colonialism and related forces have damaged the quality of social life, is it any wonder so many of us feel lonely?

(PS this sounds bleak, and it is bleak – it’s bleak that 15-24 year olds are the loneliest age group in NZ+the UK, according to recent govt stats – but it’s not some coded expression of my own feelings. Just trying to think through why loneliness strikes a chord with so many.)

Capitalism and colonialism particularly afflict 15-24 year olds?

NZ stats here: http://socialreport.msd.govt.nz/social-connectedness/loneliness.html

16.8% of 15-24 year olds felt lonely in last month (only thing that surprises me about that is that the figure isn’t higher).

UK figures (actually on 16-24 year olds) here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre/latestnews/2018/loneliest-age-group-radio-4

Nothing on capitalism and colonialism in either of those sets of statistics. From the New Zealand social report:

Ethnic groups reported similar rates of loneliness in 2014. Those in the European/Other group had a reported rate of 13.2 percent, which was similar to the rate for Pacific peoples (13.5 percent). The rates for Māori and those in the Asian ethnic group were 16.6 percent and 16.7 percent respectively.

Not much difference there, and that Māori and Asian loneliness rates are slightly higher doesn’t fit with the colonialism claim.

There is some relationship between loneliness and poorness:

Incomes and wellbeing correlate with age, which isn’t surprising:

Figure SC5.2 – Proportion of population who reported feeling lonely all, most or some of the time during the last four weeks, by sex and age group, 2014

But most peeople who are lonely are only lonely some of the time or a little of the time, and there is no statistics on how that applies across the age ranges, so it’;s hard to read much from it.

Easier to just blame capitalism and colonialism without any corroboration.