DLANZ: Waitangi 1840 Constitutional Review(s) will be A Fizzer without He Whakaputunga 1835 and Whakanui Oranga 2001
Disabled express concern for Future without the Declaration of Independence and NZ Disability Strategy…an old Maori quote…He totara wahi rua he kai na te ahi
A ttotara tree, split in two is fuel for the fire (Unity is Strength)
As part of an arrangement between the National and NZ Maori Parties, in 2011, the Crown undertook a review of Parliamentary and Bill of Rights / Constitutional to, among other procedures, ascertain how if possible Te Tiriti O Waitangi…The Treaty of Waitangi was, and or, could be incorporated.
DISABLED LIBERATION AOTEAROA NZ has openly stated that this government’s term of 3 years has not operated with a clear mandate (DLANZ Letters to Gov. General 2013) . However / Engarei in 2012, in a handwritten form, followed by an EC Version (DLANZ wrote ‘Proposal for Waitangi Constitutional Review June 2012 "A Fusion of Horizons" Manifest 2013), and supplied to both Groups. The following is a quick review of how, we see the situation at present.
WAITANGI….A FIRE / WHEA OF TWO CAMPS
This Government Review was announced Official Government Review with Resources of State including leading dignitaries cited at www.beehive.govt.nz ‘’Deputy Prime Minister Bill English and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples today announced the 12 appointees to the Constitutional Advisory Panel…,The Government confirmed last December that it would conduct a wide-ranging review of New Zealand’s constitutional arrangements – including the size of Parliament, the length of the electoral term, Māori representation, the role of the Treaty of Waitangi and whether New Zealand needs a written constitution.’’ This was a part of a review, which only is a part of wider areas of Pakeha political representation like terms of Parliament... The dignitaries spanned across a wide range of specialist skills of which only some where Maori.
At the same time (2011) an Independent Iwi Constitutional Working Group Aotearoa Matike Mai was set up with Prof Makere / Margaret Mutu from the University of Auckland and Moana Jackson, an eminent lawyer and as quoted
Its brief is:
1. To work on developing a model for a constitution
For our country based on our tikanga and fundamental values, He Whakaputunga
O Te Rangatiratanga o Niu Tireni and Te Tiriti o Waitangi and the work already carried out in this area. This includes the debates in the 1995/6 Hui convened by Sir Hepi te Heuheu.
2. To give consideration to the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Bolivian constitution and the international context.
3. To ensure that whanau and Hapu are fully inform d and participate fully in
the development of the model. 4. To discuss the model with government once Maori
are satisfied with it.
4. To discuss the model with government once Maori are satisfied with it. “
Comprising of representatives from Iwi and Hapu, there was a series of Hui / Marae Meetings to look at Aotearoa’s Constitution to include He Whakaputanga Declaration of Independence 1835, which because of International obligations of trade under Law of the Sea flagged ships policy; Aotearoa became its own Sovereign. Those arrangements are not getting any real mention in the Crown’s Review of Waitangi and very little support, unlike their contemporizes , whose main paradigm seems to be Post Waitangi 1840 Legal and Political systems which we have inherited today.
This Independent Review provides exciting challenges to our society, informing and educating the general concepts of how this came about; terms like tutu rangatiratanga, which means a chiefly exchange between Chiefs…like land use, where, the original is returned back to the original ‘owners’. In fact as Maori have often said…no one owns a Whenua…it’s as Guardian / Kaitiaki to preserve and protect Aotearoa for later generations. The fundamental issue is that this Treaty was supposed to have been signed between friends not enemies. There will always be a resounding feeling of loss if this is not resolved and our (New Zealand Aotearoa) history has been littered with this for too long a time.
DISABLED VIEW / TE AO HAUAA
Action; not word are needed for structural change and Solidarity among ‘oppressed’ is imperative for change to take place. DISABLED LIBERATION AOTEAROA NZ took the view that both vision and conscience are both restricted and limited in scope under the economic drivers of a Society that continues to promote barriers of disparity and discrimination onto its population.
In DLANZ Proposals from Governor General under Maori Control; Overseer of All Watchdogs Commissions and Scientific Maori Advisors is just an example given to combat the disparity of inequality.
On the subject of ‘Inequality’, a comment was posted on DLANZ Face Book I feel best describes what that means; ‘’ …Inequality is a powerful tool that is used by both political parties, as it gives them the get out of jail card so to speak. For example, to sustain their greed they put prices up on everything and the poor are made to suffer and bear it, but when budget comes along their first ploy is to take their get out jail card and then they like a miracle have found money to help the poor and so the cycle of degradation goes on.........’’
In solidarity, if Disabled are to move forward, then we take our Past with us. In 2001 a Sociologist Martin Sullivan (himself Disabled) wrote that Disabled needed to look on their struggle with able bodied as comparable with Maori over land rights based on Indigenous Title as Disability rights were, and still are, being ‘squeezed’ .He made note that Disability Laws (Human Rights 1993: Health and Disability Code of Rights 1994 etc) were crafted into Civil rights and Governments had exemptions or issues like access required lengthy delays and served to weigh down Disabled, who were already bearing the brunt of then, the harsh economic conditions set under the them National led government and followed on by the Labor Coalition with Helen Clark and Jim Anderton.
Sullivan can elaborate more clearly, but DLANZ wrote to support the United Nations Covenant on Rights for People with Disabilities CPRWD….” In New Zealand (Aotearoa…the Maori / Indigenous name) Disabled are not faring well in regards to International Human Rights. We have policies of foetal scanning and terminations on the grounds of recognized impairments; restricted access for our young ones to education facilities; both Marital and Employment statistics are relatively low compared to Able Bodied paradigms, due to legislation and policies introduced in the 1990’s and subsequently continued by the NZ Labour Government since 1999….We have immigration restrictions on entry for those families with disabled kids, and this has led to the death and suffering which the NZ Government promised to stop. Also, as this regime is maintaining disability as a ‘medicalized’ issue, they continue to identify our struggles as an individual’s ability to adapt to their (Able bodied) environment.” 2007
This is still in our view, as current today, if not an even further erosion of independent advocacy where ‘Disabled’ as a group have become a non-humanistic germ theory category, where our ‘bodies’ are aligned with medicalized illness and bacteria of one sort or another; and our ‘culture’ is being analyzed if our lives are on a Petri dish. There are now instances were even on Maraes guide dogs for Blind are rejected and people in wheelchairs are refused rights to speak because they sit instead of stand.
COMPARING CULTURAL (INDIGENOUS / DISABLED)
This bears remarkable semblance to the marginalized state of Maori who’s cultural norms were denigrated by Colonizers who used terms like ‘progress’ and ‘civilization’ in a discourse of Dominant / Subordinate dialogue. As an example of this is something I picked off one of the Mana Wahine (Maori Women) websites on how this affects people:
“Put simply they are offensive because (i) they denigrate sacred symbols and sacred ways of being; (ii) they maintain colonial representations of Native Peoples as ‘savage’ (iii) they reproduce notions that Indigenous cultural symbols and taonga (our treasures) are open and available for anyone who desires them with little or no awareness of their significance. Those are three simple reasons for why such actions are offensive and there are many others.”
Disabled believe the same applies and highlights the need for indigenous communities ‘walk’ alongside those who live in the frame, once described as the most vulnerable, yet in fact presents a picture of life for all. Despite the good work of well intentioned individuals and organizations / iwi, there is little to be gained by way of actions, until the two groups can work with each other to share common objectives.
Tracey McIntosh / Ngai Tuhoe wrote a piece on Gender Race and Public Policy in AOTEAROA NZ 2001…and I totally agree with her findings of a return to Waitangi.
Page 6….”Before this Tribunal, the Maori women taking the claim are having to establish and argue, using historical texts, research and oral testimonies, that the Crown has ignored the rangatiratanga, or chiefly or sovereign status, of Maori women”
Page 12 …”Maori women continue to want to be linked to and stand by Maori men, we recognize that to achieve our aims and to maintain our own cultural values continued solidarity is essential, we must however also continue to strive for equal positions of power and responsibility. Social policy, legislation and action, if it is to create greater levels of well being, must enhance the mechanism for power sharing and inclusive participation rather than replicate and legitimate unequal power relations.”
Page 15…“Though there is the reference to the Treaty of Waitangi, as there is in many governmental goals and objectives, parliament has continued to resist inserting legally binding references to specific Treaty or other Maori rights in social legislation (Cheyne et al. 1999:154). There continues to be a greater enthusiasm in meeting .culturally appropriate. goals that may be met with increased sensitivity to cultural considerations than to looking at true power sharing which would be needed to honour Treaty of Waitangi commitments. The health statistics of Maori speak to a history of exclusion, material deprivation, cultural degradation and marginalization. These are all offspring of racism. To overcome these there is a need to not only recognize and respect cultural difference but to create structural change that produces true economic and political power sharing. Shifts in the debates about biculturalism and tino rangatiratanga in New Zealand since the 1980s has been about the need for economic and political power sharing and not merely an awareness of and respect for Maori values, language and culture. This can take many forms and requires political courage to create the mechanisms and institutions that would make .closing the gaps. more than mere rhetoric, .such power sharing may require autonomous political institutions and an independent economic base, or it may involve equal participation in bicultural institutions. Cheyne et al. 1999:122). Oppression cannot be lifted solely by facing up to or even appreciating difference. Culture is vitally important but it will be a hollow culture if it serves only to record an ongoing history of oppression. Aotearoa was once a Maori society that was forced to find a place for Pakeha settlement but it has become a settler New Zealand in which a place has to be found for Maori (Orange in Fleras & Spoonley 1999:13). To move toward a time where we can begin to truly live lives of partnership will involve massive structural changes. To do nothing, or to apply policies piecemeal, will be to bequest an increasingly troubled nation on our future generations. Real moves to close the gaps can only come with the shifting and transforming of power relations.”
SUMMARY..., DISABLED EQUALS ABLE MINDED
Disabled / Nga Hauaa have for over a decade been calling for able bodied / maaroherohe population (s) that there is still work to do before a ‘Universal and Inclusionary’ Able bodied paradigms delude themselves thinking that ‘state / frame’ is static and permanent, which for individuals, is a fallacy. From accidents to ageism, including man-made wars etc Disability is as a natural phenomenon of Nature and integral to the continuation of a balanced society…moving forward….we do it together….Tatau Tatau Tatau
DISABLED LIBERATION AOTEAROA NZ look forward to seeing a Waitangi whereby those of the past can soon ‘rest in peace’
Doug Hay – Coordinator
FOOTNOTES AND REFERENCES
All DLANZ Commentaries are on the Internet…especially Aotearoa Media Centre; The Daily Blog; The Standard among others….please Google it yourself….thank you…..Doug Hay DLANZ Coordinator
NZ Maori and other Indigenous consider Language / Reo a key for a Culture / Tika, and while I am not a blood line Maori, it behoves all citizens of Aotearoa to make an effort, including Disabled / Hauaa / Hape…this is a process and is the best I can do with limited knowledge in all things Maori.
Most information came off this: Independent Iwi Constitutional Working Group Aotearoa Matike Mai cited http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/iwi.htm#med However / Engarei there is plenty more on Google, especially Makere Mutu’s Keynote Speech in Napier 2013 titled “Removing The Shackles of Colonization”
Unless names of individuals or organizations are on ‘Public’ documents obtained online etc…DLANZ operate the Academic practice of ‘Chatham House Rules’,,, give no name of source
Sullivan, MJ. (2001). Disabled people and the politics of partnership in Aotearoa New Zealand. In LB. Ed (Ed.) Disability, politics and the struggle for change. (pp. 93 - 109). London, UK: David Fulton Publishers
Taken from DLANZ Reunify Website 2007 CRPWD title ‘’Disabled Liberation-Aotearoa NZ’’
Cited on Te Wharepora Hou……….Wahine Maori comforting the disturbed and disturbing the comfortable…….enzime http://tewhareporahou.wordpress.com/2014/05/11/racism-and-cultural-misappropriation/ Title: “Racism and Cultural Misappropriation” posted 1 May 2014
Excerpt taken…‘’Contested Realities – Race, Gender and Public Policy in Aotearoa New Zealand’’ Tracey McIntosh UNSRID Paper Durban 2001 http://www.unrisd.org