Friday, November 13, 2009

The Maori Party Controllers

The Maori Party leaders believe they are a party of control, their control. But a truly democratic party is not controlled by its leaders, it is led by them, and in a really good party all members are leaders.

The designated Maori party leaders believe they can decide who is in the party or not. How can it be their choice? This is the “Maori” party. If you are Maori and want to be in the Maori party can you be refused?

A good party has a diversity of views as well as views in common. The two can be told apart. Maori Party ‘leaders’ attempts to control members’ views crushes the party’s ability to act democratically and damages the essential human right of its members to freedom of expression.

None of this is to say that any of the other parties (perhaps the Greens?) are any more tolerant, diverse or democratic. There is a long way to go before any political party has the openness, tolerance and respect to let in and allow the free responsibility of it members in all their diversity while still accentuating the critical policies they have in common.

I for one will welcome the debate we get when we do, and will even more welcome not having the controllers come crushing down on it. (Of course it doesn’t help that most of the media eggs on controllers.)


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