May 13, 2021

Maori News & Indigenous Views

Hori 3.0: Coming to terms with The Struggle

3 min read

Morena! Morena!

What a strange, magical and maddening year has it been – well, it was for our family. Nearly losing a sister and then gaining a new sister; celebrating the birth of a niece; farewelling uncles, cousins, koroua, kuia – many loved ones.

Whitney HoustonOn the wairua side, things improved in our home town of Rotorua. There seemed to be a slow realisation that our children are the future and like Whitney said, that we must treat them well and let them lead the way. It is going to be a solid 20/10 with lots planned – especially looking forward to the Te Arawa and Mataatua Kapa Haka Regionals. Might see you there…

Treat them well and let them lead the way…

Now, I know we have many things to look over, like the Auckland Super Snub, choosing a Maori Flag equal in kaha to the NZ flag, recognising the broad view of support and criticism of the Maori Party, Maori Legacies,the rise and rise of the Iwi Leaders Forum, who owns water, really, and we will get to those in good time but can Ikorero aboutat one kaupapa for the moment. It is as important but hardly ever talked about, and it is a little word I call STRUGGLE.

StruggleNow over the years, the word STRUGGLE has defined life. The first was the epic struggle of Maori and Pacific Islanders to be recognised as equal (again that word) to New Zealanders, and in particular, Pakeha Kiwis. We worked hard, played hard but still couldn’t sit on the mezzanine level at the pictures or heaven forbid, rise to prominence in the political or business world. “Speak Maori and get the strap” was our version of shoosh and speak with a BBC accent. We have made improvements, many, but racism is only one speech away and denying our rights is as easy as passing a new law.

More recently, STRUGGLE is about just getting by. Just paying the bills. Just getting enough kai on the table. Just enough petrol in the tank to get there and back…hopefully. More often, the voices of the poor come from Government agencies straining under the weight of the system, or commentators bemoaning another hard-earned-tax-payers dollar going to the poor. Pretty sure this year I heard a few people saying that the poor should stop having kids. God Zone, ey.

Our country, as awesome as it is, can still be the stinkest friend in the crew.

TaongaStill, it is in this STRUGGLE that strong bonds have been formed. We can be right there to back each other. Just like the RSA. Just like when Trevor Agnew from The Press says that “…Maori TV is a taonga“. This can be put up against the likes MP Trevor Mallard saying spectrum is not a Treaty right. Or when the stranded whales on the Coromandel were recently buried by the community, with DOC and local hapu supporting the effort. ‘All for one’ kind of kaupapa. Makes the STRUGGLE worth while.

Anyway, before I go and feed our babies, I just want to put up my list for Top 10 Maori of 2009:

10. Aunty Bea Yates, for a lifetime in learning and especially for writing One Day a Taniwha;

9. Tuku Morgan – what are you REALLY up to?

8. Harko Brown, for raising the profile of Ki-o-Rahi and for teaching it to the world;

7. Hemi Rolleston and whanau as they continue to pioneer Kiwifruit and Maori business practices;

6. The entire whanau at Maori TV, for showing us all what Maori look, sound and sing like;

5. Metiria Turei, for co-captaining the Greens and not f***ings*** up;

4. Wiremu Barriball, for his inspired designs – everything from Maori Bebo skins to shoes to shades;

3. Te Taka Keegan, for being a staunch te reo Maori activist and developing new digital tools;

2. Hawea Vercoe, for his love, his life and his laughter; and

1. Linda Munn, Hiraina Marsden and Jan Smith, creators of the Maori/Tino Rangatiratanga Flag – thank you all for your koha, your taonga to us.

This is my list. Do you agree? Who would you include/remove?? All comments welcome.

For now, I’d like to leave you with a song from our Classic Collection. It’s Prince Tui & Missy Teka singing Mum & E Ipo. Beautiful…

Korero more soon.

2 thoughts on “Hori 3.0: Coming to terms with The Struggle

  1. Beached Whales Get Second Chance

    The holiday season usually brings out the best in people as this is the time of year when we see generosity and giving from even the angriest of Scrooges. Charitable donations go up at this time of year and people are generally more willing to lend their neighbor a hand. This spirit of generosity was extended to the animal kingdom recently as local New Zealanders rushed to help a pod of whales that had been beached at a popular tourist location. Over sixty pilot whales had become beached in shallow waters and volunteers rushed to a spot on the North Island to lend a hand. According to witnesses at the scene the efforts of the crowd were not in vain as about two thirds of the whales were able to be rescued by the volunteers.

    The whales that survived were quickly back out to sea, and environmental groups monitored their progress to ensure that they made it in to open water. One of the saved whales even gave birth after being saved, much to the delights of the volunteers, who were happy to be able to save the unborn whale. The Maori community, which is made up of natives of New Zealand, will have burial services for the whales that were not able to be rescued. It is unknown exactly what caused the mass breaching but many have theorized that the quickly sloping sandy shores and shallow water may have confused the normally reliable sonar of the whales.

    This outcome was much better than a recent breaching of one hundred and five long finned pilot whales, all of which died

  2. More than 120 whales die in strandings in New Zealand

    Volunteers attempt to save some stranded Pilot whales at Colville Bay, north of Coromandel, New Zealand, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009. Some 120 pilot whales died after becoming stranded on the beach over the weekend.(Xinhua/AFP Photo)

    More than 120 whales died over 48 hours in two separate beachings in New Zealand, the Department of Conservation said on Monday.

    More than 20 pilot whales will be buried by Coromandel Maori on Monday after dying when they became stranded on Sunday.

    Sixty-three whales, mostly cows with calves, beached themselves at Colville Bay, north of Coromandel township in North Island.

    The 3-4 meter whales were seen by fishermen struggling about 300 meters offshore around 6 a.m. and they called emergency services.

    About two thirds were saved by locals and holidaymakers who kept the surviving whales wet in the low tide until it rose in the early afternoon and they could be refloated.

    DOC spokeswoman for the area, Lyn Williams, said none of those whales had returned to the beach overnight.

    One of the cows even gave birth to a calf almost immediately after being refloated, she said.

    DOC senior adviser Mike Donoghue said the bay was a typical place for whales to become disoriented.

    Meanwhile, 105 long-finned pilot whales died at Farewell Spit at the top of the South Island on Saturday.

    DOC Golden Bay biodiversity program manager Hans Stoffregen told The Southland Times none of the stranded pod survived.

    They were discovered by a tourist plane pilot and reported to Nelson air traffic control, which contacted DOC.

    Only 30 were alive when DOC arrived and all of the adults were dead, he said.

    The whales had been there for a couple of tides and had been out of the water for a long time.

    Because the site was in a natural reserve, the whale carcasses were left where they stranded, to decompose, Stoffregen said.

    Beached whales will be buried on Monday.

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