Like many, I have watched the news in recent weeks with an increasing uneasiness about where New Zealand is going.
This week, millions of New Zealanders will be hitting the road to see family and friends for the Christmas holiday season, but in many parts of the country, our freedom of movement may be constrained by ‘road blocks’ or ‘checkpoints’ being run by some iwi, with the implicit support of the Police.
Let me be very clear: the issue of COVID restrictions is one thing (and not the role of Hobson’s Pledge to have a say on), but Jacinda Ardern’s decision to allow tribal rule of highway roadblocks – including let iwi groups set up their own checkpoints – is wrong.
It’s one thing to have Police officers enforce COVID restrictions – is it quite another to have “thugs with badges”* using discretion as to whether you’re allowed to continue your journey. As a former Police officer, I can tell you front line cops are just as uncomfortable as we are.
I really think this could be a turning point. The public is not supportive of the division of our country by race through the iwi initiated roadblocks. Your support will allow us to run a social media and advertising campaign throughout the summer, so we can recruit like-minded Kiwis and hold the Government to account.
Rather than stopping iwi initiated roadblocks our Government changed the law to accommodate them and required already stretched Police resources to be allocated to provide an appearance of legitimacy.
Your support before the end of the year will ensure we can send the Government a clear message. A vocal campaign will show this Government these roadblocks are not acceptable.
Help us make sure this Government knows we do not accept that individual groups, whether iwi or anyone else, can decide when and where public highways can be closed.
Thank you for your support and on behalf of everyone here at Hobson’s Pledge, I wish you and your loved ones a happy, and free, Christmas break.
ps. Protecting freedom, and standing up to racist laws and restrictions, depends on good people like you being willing to support the effort.
* “Thugs with badges” was how ACT’s David Seymour described the situation to Radio NZ
Hobson’s Pledge Trust · PO Box 12240, Ahuriri, Napier 4114, New Zealand