Monday, 25 September 2006

Can Maoris be racist?

"CAN MAORIS BE RACIST?" That was the question seriously considered on TV's Eye to Eye on Saturday with guests Tariana Turia, Lindsay Perigo, Ron Mark and chainsaw specialist Mike Smith.

"No!" is the answer given by Tariana Turia, Mike Smith and Atareta Poananga (the woman who made the claim and who's like a little wind-up toy on this issue) - Maoris can't be racist, they claim, because racism implies a power structure, and as Maori aren't part of the power structure then ipso facto, they can't be racist. According to Atareta then, it's only those nasty whiteys that can be racist, and it's not racist to say that.

"Yes, of course they can!" is the answer given by Lindsay Perigo. Racism is a repudiation of individualism, and a concrete expression of the collectivism and tribalism with which Maori culture is rife.

You can watch the show being repeated again on Tuesday night on TV One, or you can go here and check it out now.

And don't forget Willie Jackson and Lindsay Perigo are together again for one more week on Radio Live, noon to 3pm. Good combative radio. Listen online or check out your local frequency here.

LINKS: Eye to Eye, 23 September, 2006 - TV One [Quicktime movie]
Radio Live

RELATED: Racism, Maoritanga, Politics-NZ


  1. Hmm, lets see what my dictionary says:

    1. An excessive and irrational belief in the superiority of one's own racial group.

    Well said. I love the use of "irrational", as this is true. However, I'd extend things like the whites giving Maoris special treatments (such as Maori seats" into the mix. Hmm, no implication of needed to be in the power structure there.

  2. I saw the show and consider that Lindsay did extremely well against the racist tribalistic savages that appeared opposite him.


  3. PC, thanks for that. Bravo LP. I'll try to catch the repeat. I usually do my best to miss ETE because, well, you know why.

    Re Atareta Poananga .. first time I saw that witch was on the same prog; the one in which you were featured, now that I think of it.

    She struck me as truly horrendous. A brainwashed feminazi & racist to the core if ever I saw one - and one to keep an eye on, for sure.

  4. Yes. Next question. :)

    Of course Maori can be racist - as the more stagnant backwaters of my own whanau can readily attest, the total failure of human reason and the tragic misapplication of human passion doesn't respect any class of fool.

  5. I get the impression that one side of the debate was deliberately trying to confuse Race (a group of people with common ancestry) with Culture (The common behavior of a group of people). This was because the answer to simple debate question 'Can Maori be racist?' was so blindingly obvious that the 'no' position was completely undefendable, so Tariana and Mike attempted to change the focus of the debate entirely. Their new debate topic was just as flawed.

    Culture is a creation of man. Like all creations of man it can be flawed, such as the cultures of Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia, amongst countless others that have either collapsed under their own stupidity or continue to cause agony and destruction in the world today. Implying that one Culture cannot be superior to another is entirely devoid of logic.

    How is attacking Western influence on the modern world any different to the perceived attacks on Maori culture? By doing this Tariana is clearly guilty of doing the same thing she accuses her critics of doing.

  6. What Erik Hogan said. Exactly.

  7. Atareta Poananga once said that the Pakeha were the flotsam and jetsam of British society.

    The idea that an individual cannot be a bigot if that individual is from a different group than another is so much the epitome of post-modernist irrationalism that it ought to be the pinup example in universities of the intellectual banality of post-modernism.

  8. Erik Hogan, I agree with you wholeheartedly. As my dictionary said racism is the irrational excessive belief in a race's in a race's superiority. I believe the same extends to the cultural equivalent. The interesting thing about that definition is that it makes it quite clear that rational belief in a race's superiority (if there is any) is not racism. And it's right. It's just recognising the truth. The same goes for the cultural equivalent of course.

  9. Scott, in potential defence of AP, I always thought that phrase was credited to Donna Awatere from her 70's radical days.

    Perhaps AP was quoting her? However, I stand corrected.

  10. I can remember hearing Aterata Poananga making that same comment once before and I fell off my chair. Here is a person with more money, power and influence than I will ever have in my life, tellign me she in not empowered? What crap.

  11. Mike Smith is threatening that young Maoris will start a civil war at some stage in the future.


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