Support for Professor Margaret Mutu comes from around the country [warning – content may offend]

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Maori Women support issues raised by Professor Margaret Mutu

Auckland based Maori womens group Te Wharepora Hou regret the media polarising of the issues that Professor Margaret Mutu is bringing to the fore. They agree that sharp analysis and critique is required following the recent release of the Department of Labours report on ethnic perceptions.

[sws_pullquote_right]We need to acknowledge racism and participate in constructive debates to develop solutions. [/sws_pullquote_right] Spokesperson Mera Penehira says The call to have Professor Mutu sacked from her position at Auckland university is ludicrous. She has a role as an academic to bring about informed and critical thinking into this important and timely conversation about immigration and racism in Aotearoa.

The group support the call for a more in depth focus on how racism is manifested throughout the political systems, institutions and communities of Aotearoa New Zealand. Te Wharepora Hou suggests that the recently formed constitutional review panel and review process should be a clear opportunity for New Zealanders to discuss these issues.

We would welcome the opportunity to talk further about the issues of immigration and racism. Maori women are often excluded from having a voice yet we know that many solutions and pathways forward reside among the hearts and minds of these women in our Maori communities. Professor Mutu has suggested the Treaty of Waitangi as a good starting point and we agree. These are the sorts of things the review panel need to be brave enough to address when they come to our people. says Mera Penehira.

Te Wharepora Hou wants to ensure a stronger voice for wahine and is concerned primarily with the wellbeing of whanau, hapu, iwi (family and community). The group well understands the multiple effects of racism particularly on Maori women and families. Te Wharepora Hou urges New Zealanders to be astute at a time when the whole world is watching us, stating, we need to acknowledge racism and participate in constructive debates to develop solutions.

TangataWhenua.com has seen similar call of support for Professor Mutu throughout social networks and via online blogs. We also noted an email responding to Professor Mutu’s comments on the Mana Facebook group from an American who had immigrated here:

I’m sorry margeret mutu, but capping white immigration is a little racist don’t you think???? You dumb nigger, youwould have jumped up and down if Don Brash in one of his many speeches said we should cap immigration of darkies to NZ. Get over yourselves ! White man and government has too much to offer your people . Still cant believe the Mana party even exsists and if you are such a proud people and party, how about you raise your own party funds and not rely on the NZ people. Your entire party is just too out there and hypocritical for the avg kiwi , but I suppose the hard core niggers like yourselves all get off on this. Send all niggers home!!! …

Maybe I should start a KKK party, get funded by the white working class of this country and send you black fucks packing!!!!!!! I grew up in the USA and Iwas never against blacks until I metyou moaning Maoris!!!!!! All you people do is take take take, how about you give a little too, or did you spend that money at the pub?

Rather proves her point doesn’t it.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Does this entire debate seem a little redundant to anyone else? Here’s an anthropological tidbit for you… Maori’s are extinct. There are no pure blood Maori’s left on the planet.

    I find it funny half these muppets screaming for a piece of the national monetary pie, even though (in fact especially) when they for the large have done nothing to earn it (in most cases these types of people are detrimental to a stable society), have a GREATER number of european ancestors than Maori. It really is laughable.

    And also, very very sad. Sad at how ruined and divided NZ has become through this flood of political-correctness and eggshell walking. For example: Maori’s are statistically more likely to abuse their children. The thing SO many of you out there find impossible to understand, is that statements like these are NOT racist, but FACT.

    Racism and realism need to be clearly distinguished, but regrettably, led by a third-world political system, run by the most ignorant and corrupt people they could find, New Zealand is fucked. And will only continue to get more fucked.

    Until we can stop being *cough* “Maori” and “Asian” and “Europeans”… and start being what it all says on our passports, New Zealanders.

    And one last thing to “you’s maori fullas”… You weren’t the indigenous people to New Zealand… you in fact ATE the indigenous people… and although we could have squished you under our colonial boots, we offered you a much better deal than you had offered YOUR predecessors. Something to be grateful for I would think…

    Maybe that’s just MY culture talking.

    Yours Sincerely,
    Recent ExPat Kiwi
    (For these exact reasons)

  2. The calls to sack Professor Margaret Mutu should be condemned. Academic freedom needs to be defended. At the same time, people have a right to criticise Mutu. Of course, the type of comments made apparently by an ‘American who had immigrated here’ are disgusting and racist. However, I believe it is false to say that these comments represent the thinking of most immigrants in New Zealand.

    Mutus labeling of most white immigrants as white supremacists is simplistic and demagogic. Her subsequent claim that she cant be racist because she isnt from an oppressor group is not only laughable, but indicates a deeply flawed understanding of racism and the complexities of the relationship between an oppressed group and an oppressive system. The history of capitalism and colonisation has sadly demonstrated that the racism and authoritarianism of an imperialist/colonising regime can be transferred to persons from oppressed groups, especially those from the elite sections of oppressed peoples. A contemporary example is the Nation of Islam, which is a racist Black Nationalist group whose ideology represents both an appropriation and an inversion of white racism in America. This back supremacist group preaches that: black people are genetically superior to white people, intermarriage or race mixing should be prohibited, and that “the Jews” control the American economy and the world economy. Like Mutu, the Nation of Islam denies being racist and claim that they merely champion the ascendancy of black people. Thankfully, not all leaders of oppressed and colonised peoples are cut from the same demagogic cloth as Mutu and the Nation of Islam.

    One of my heroes is Malcolm X, who originally was a member of the Nation of Islam and, by his own admission, had been a racist. Like Mutu now, Malcolm X had initially seen the issue of oppression through the prism of race and colour. Later, Malcolm X moved beyond an ideology of race (seeing the world divided between black and whites), and began to gravitate towards leftist groups advocating a radical class-based analysis. Malcolm continued his focus on a fight against black oppression, but came to realize that the fight for black liberation needed to be within a political framework of the oppressed fighting the oppressor. Equally, he came to see capitalism as maintaining racist structures, rather than simply white people being the source of black oppression. In fact shortly before he was assassinated, Malcolm X argued that the struggle was not a racial conflict of black against whiteRather, we are today seeing a global rebellion of the oppressed against the oppressor, the exploited against the exploiter. Mutu and her supporters might want to reflect on Malcolm Xs ultimate conclusion: I believe that there will ultimately be a clash between the oppressed and those who do the oppressing… but I dont think it will be based upon the colour of the skin.

    Mutu stands in the tradition of a long line of demagogues who use their position within an oppressed group to elevate themselves to a power position. Despite her decrying of the white racist state in New Zealand, Mutu is in fact part of the establishment and part of what Annette Sykes has labeled as the Brown Table. The Brown Table can be seen as that elite section of Maoridom who have disproportionately benefited from Treaty settlements and the Maori renaissance. This elite amongst Maori sees capitalism as the best vehicle for their own, and their peoples, empowerment.
    I am disappointed that left-wing activists (Maori and pakeha), who do recognise that there is a common bond between white, Pacific, Asian and Maori workers, are so quick to line up with the divisive Professor Margaret Mutu, who is a representative of the Maori elite. For class against class, not race against race!

  3. Im not sure who it was who said Weve come too far not to go further. I think this is what Margaret Mutu was alluding to recently.

    I write as a Pakeha and a Treaty and anti-racism facilitator with 20 years experience who has worked in Maori and Pakeha organisations.

    We are a very special country that can move relatively quickly once our social conscience is alerted: think votes for women, social security, anti-nukes, GE free etc.

    Over the past few decades many non-Maori have come some way in understanding our history and how it shapes us now, particularly how blatantly discriminatory laws have resulted in unequal outcomes for Maori and non-Maori. Its called structural racism and weve been having a good look at how it generally works to privilege the dominant culture, and undermines others.

    Im not surprised some Maori are wary of immigration and economic policies they have no control over, which continue to marginalize them in their own land.

    Could we be the country that first honours the promises made in its contract with indigenous people? I think we can, and we all stand to benefit from the experience.

    Weve done some innovative things in the community sector, changing constitutions and practices to try to reflect a Treaty relationship. Local and central government still have lots of work to do but some are having a go the Waikato River Authority with shared governance is an example.

    I agree with Professor Mutu, it would be a crying shame to have this healthy new growth smothered in old world attitudes that presume indigenous cultures are solely for entertainment, and should be excluded from decision-making on the big stuff, like economic policy and immigration.

    I welcome the upcoming discussions on Treaty-based constitutional change, having come to embrace the idea that if its good for Maori, its good for all New Zealanders.

  4. Professor Mutu is living in another world. She needs to come out of NZ and see the world for herself. White people are loosing power because of their own stupidity, greed and living beyond their means. Look at Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Ireland…all white and in big trouble. Look at the former Soviet countries… bunch of laughing stocks and all whites. The English are a joke, with their economy teetering on the brink of disaster. America although run by a black man is still majority white and its economy is nothing to write home about either. It is the Asians who are increasing their power now, and with the way the things are going the Asians (Chinese, Koreans, Taiwanese, etc.) will be called on to bail out the white people (Greeks, Italians, etc.). The world has changed and Professor Mutu should wake up and smell the coffee! It will do all of you New Zealanders good if you leave your corner of the world and come see for yourselves!

  5. He wahine toa a Margaret Mutu, aa kia kaha e te whaea!Margaret’s comments are articulated with sharp concise thinking. Maori have always been the victims of white supremacy over us since the day Captain Cook shot his first tangatawhenua in Te Matau a Maui. Then their guns and diseases wiped out over 80% of our population deeming us the dying race. And without protection nor any democratic process of care from the Queen of England nor the British government, England invaded our shores with the settlers who stole our land, manipulating the courts and justice systems to steal the land under a false and corrupt British justice system, they call democracy. This British democratic system New Zealand perpetuates still protects the current hegemonic practices of white supremists emmigrating to Aotearoa. However, NZ had a terrible racist policy with the house raids of the 1970’s on Pacific Islanders. When the Asian invasion started hitting our shores, this was the type of racist rhetoric that was overstated by media as they had fears of Asians taking over NZ. White media or should I say mainstream media is fast to attack out on Maori issues and fast to defend any white racist issues too. In 2011 it is extremely vital for the government and the people of Aotearoa New Zealand to protect our country and screen these white racist supremists not allowing them into our country, and Maori need to be at the policy creating level and monitoring of the immigration process.

    • Hira I agree that we don’t want anyone who is racist coming to live in our country as we try to eradicate racism. However I think as New Zealand becomes more and more multicultural it is important to have input from a wide range of groups that could be/ are affected by racism. I believe Maori culture plays the founding role in what makes up New Zealand’s national identity today. As a nation, as a whole, we need to be aware of anybody that will threaten this, regardless of race. Eradicating racism in New Zealand should be a priority, and I believe it starts with education in schools, home and the community.

  6. Does it really matter who addressed this issue? Just because it happened to be raised by a Maori or should I say by a coloured person does that mean he/she is racist? No. Does racism exist in this country right now? Yes. So why can’t we all get involved in a good healthy discussion on racism so we can all understand why we are having this discussion today? Something must be happening in our society why this issue has been raised? People don’t just pluck an idea of concern out of thin air unless it is being actioned. When a person raises an issue and suddenly gets a string of anti comments aimed at that person that has to ring alarm bells. Something is wrong. So, who will have the guts to analyse this issue rather than settling for avoidance and condemnation.

  7. It doesnt help when you get ill informed responses from a so called “iwi leader” like that Pokokohua David Rankin. Yes our immagration laws need to be changed/ammended, kia kaha Professor Mutu!!

  8. I agree with Professor Mutu. Why? We only have to look at the statistics of immigrants in employment when NZ has a high unemployment rate.I remember the days when you could walk off the street and straight into a job.A person had choices and I remember when employers socialised with their employees. That’s gone. You turn on your tv and instead of hearing a NZ accent, it’s a foreign accent.What is happening to NZ? Come on racism has always existed in this country only everyone is treating it as though it doesn’t exist when it does.I was in China at the time when Hong Kong was handed back to China and I had a Chinese friend who invited me to join him at a briefing run by a NZ Tourist organisation and to my disgust I watched a video aimed at encouraging Chinese to immigrate to NZ and in that video I saw a Mongrel Mob guy, a Black Power guy and a kapa haka group performance used to represent what Maori are like in NZ. The Chinese were
    shown residential areas where Maori largely live, namely the Housing NZ areas and that Maori are known to dress in Red clothing representing their affiliation to the Mongrel Mob gang or blue representing their affiliation to the Black Power gang. By the way, you can’t blame racism only on white people. Do we need to address racism in this country? Definitely!

  9. Why isn’t anyone noticing that NONE of us have much say in the criteria NZ uses to select migrants, and do we even know what they are? This issue affects all Kiwis and I think we should all have a say in what kind of country we want.

  10. Insulting…Ignorant redneck. Ignorant no respect. Ignorant white supremacist. IGNORANCE DOES NOT EQUAL INNOCENCE

  11. Kia ora Tangata Whenua, do you have the actual statements made by Professor Margaret Mutu, (bar the newspapers interpretation) have you interviewed her and got her take on it? Apart from the obvious recipients (Maori who consistently are confronted with racist attitudes in NZ – FACT to all those who walk around with rose coloured glasses on!), its the facts that some people (not that mainstream media would ever care to divulge) seek to know, so on what bases is Prof Mutu’s statement made upon?

  12. to me there’s no difference between tauiwi born in nz and tauiwi born overseas. They’re all settlers on stolen land, it depends what they want to do about it. I find pakeha from nz are more racist than pakeha immigrants and they take Maori sovereignty as threat to their personal identity.

    • I am a recent immigrant from the UK (3 years) and I have got to say that I was totally shocked about the racism I see from some of the white kiwis who were born here, overtly about Maori but also about a lot of other cultures too. It’s quite open and in your face. I am constantly at odds with them over maori issues and they think I have no right to question their attitudes as I wasn’t born here and I don’t know anything. I have had that said to me openly.

      I am a student teacher who has only had minimal insight into what has happened since colonisation. I have found just having that little bit of knowledge has increased my ability to question people and when I get to the nitty gritty of the subject, once I get to a position whre I think I am getting somewhere the subject will then get changed.

      I think its a valid point that people who have overt racist views or supremicist views should not be allowed into Aotearoa and that Maori should have more say about the selection criteria for immigration. I will tell you that the skills that they look for are from the white middle class professionals and tradespeople who, by way of career and wealth, like to keep the status quo. You have to be able to speak English and you have to be aware of what the Treaty of Waitangi is (but not what is contained in it). My first experience of the contents of the Treaty of Waitangi was from a workshop I attended as part of my degree course after two years of living here.

      From what I have read and experienced of Maori culture, personally, I would much rather align myself with Maori than that of the professional middle class, and believe in the values contained within the Maori culture (from the little I know). I do appreciate though that I am one of the minority and I totally agree with the sentiment that what is good for Maori is good for New Zealand.

  13. As long as foreigners control the politics of Aotearoa, no Maori is safe from the racism of colonizers. She was absolutely correct in her anylysis. If Maoridom allow colonist to dictate the definition of racism, Maoris will end up in the same situation as Kanaka Maoli where the immigrants have taken advantage of our Aloha. Now all these immigrants, are using the system to systematical strip us of all our rights and Aina. Stop these people now or you all will no longer have Aotearoa.

  14. Anytime time white trash, U have tried to wipe us out and we are still here cecause we arent going anywhere. Maybe learn a bit of history before spouting ignorance, I think Margaret had people like you in mind when she made her statement. Your comments may be welcome in the so called “land of the free…but whoever told you that is your enemy” Rage Against the Machine

  15. Alas, i dont know Magret Mutu personally, but she comes across as someone who is extremely intelligent and an absolutely well rounded and educated person. I think our wahine and indeed all wahine would be well placed to look at her as an inspiring role model. So, congratulations to her for standing up for our people and may it help to inspire many more of us(men and women)to fight the good fight ! Kia Kaha professor Mutu.

  16. Comments such as Professor Mutu’s will always stir things up. Just happens that it was a particularly volatile and racist immigrant that came out of the woodwork with an obviously uneducated rant.
    People are inherently defensive when potentially negative comments are made in relation to them. In saying that I do not agree with what Prof Mutu has said and feel it is counter productive to New Zealand progressing as not only the home for Maori culture but for many cultures. This has undoubtably been hyped up by the media attention that has been given to it. I do understand that she is attempting to raise something that is important, should New Zealand allow people to come and live here that could be counter productive to it’s goals, but I think that the tact was brash and unnecessary. Policing this issue based on race is not the answer and will only create divides.

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