Friday, March 29, 2024

The Thinker: Segregated spaces at Auckland University - why the surprise?

When the recent controversy broke concerning the “designated area for Maori and Pasifika Students” at the University of Auckland, I reflected on an article I read authored by a Law Lecturer at Auckland University on 5th June 2020. The title of the article was “Time to Dismantle our rotting house”. The article is still available online.

“Time to Dismantle our rotting house” was written by an Auckland University Law lecturer in response to and inspired by the Black Lives Matter protests in 2020. The article links the “black struggle”  in the United States with that of “black” and “brown” folk in New Zealand.

The author writes of “the pain and anger that comes from constantly having your humanity denied by the white supremacist state.” That is, New Zealand is a “white supremist state.” The criminal justice system “works to criminalise and destroy the lives of black and brown families.” The author it should be noted completed a Masters of Laws from Harvard University, specializing in Critical Race Theory and minority rights.

He claims that the criminal justice system, especially our policing structure and prison institutions, “have always been designed to oppress Maori, as well as other groups of colour”. Policing structures and practices “deliberately target Maori and Pasifika communities.” The “problem” isn’t  just a few racist cops, The problem is the entire structure, which has a deep and pervasive culture of white supremacy and toxic masculinity.”

In respect to the New Zealand Police, the author states “The police serves to maintain a capitalist social order and its racist, colonial dimensions. When it is ‘keeping the peace’, it is engaging in class war. When it is ‘maintaining public safety’, it is maintaining the safety of the privileged few at the expense of criminalized populations who are deemed unworthy of saving.”

This law lecturer from Auckland University is not an advocate of reform. His solution is the abolition of the police force, and the abolition of prisons, and a revolution to dismantle the “white supremist capitalist state”. In its place would be the building of a “Tiriti-based constitution that will help our nation’s leaders find ways to discuss, plan and implement these new systems that will keep all of our communities safe.” This will be done “in continuing our relationship of solidarity in our efforts to dismantle white supremacy as a global enterprise.”

The author exhorts “Therefore, as we imagine, dream, protest and fight for a better Aotearoa, and face barriers to change that seems impossible to overcome, let us always be inspired by the words of legendary black American activist, Angela Davis:  “You have to act as if it were possible to radically transform the world. And you have to do it all the time.”

For those who don’t recall Angela Davis, Ms Davis is an American Marxist and longtime member of the Communist Party USA. Ms Davis received the Soviet Union’s Lenin Peace Prize.

I have attempted to give an accurate flavor of this article, but of course if you wanted to take the time to read the whole article it would take no more than a few minutes to find and read online.

So is it at all surprising that a “black” or “brown” student at Auckland University might feel the need to have a “safe space”. No matter what their personal experience, they are bombarded with radical and extremist Marxist rhetoric that divides people into victim and oppressor classes, and magnifies differences between people based on skin color. This rhetoric comes from so called educators that are frequently propagandists and activists for Marxist theory. Critical Race theory is all too frequently used to legitimize and magnify racial hate and division.

I cannot imagine Martin Luther King advocating for “safe spaces”, dividing up spaces that are only accessible to one race of people. He advocated for inclusion not segregation.  Martin Luther King’s dream was that people would be judged according to their character, not by the color of their skin. The radical left, inspired by Marxism, uses and promotes racial division as a tool to create conditions where their utopian Marxist revolution can be achieved. The radical left hates capitalism, hates western civilization, hates democracy, and hates those that oppose them.

So given the radical rhetoric that comes from the “intellectuals”, reinforced by their radical left wing allies in the media, the perception of the need for a “safe space” at University is perhaps understandable. Every parent who has a child studying at University should be aware of the radical Marxist propaganda that is being advocated by far-left academics. I know from having two young adult children at University that students who do not accept far-left Marxist propaganda are pressured into silence, and as a result they self-censor. In other words, they feel compelled to keep their mouth shut. Lecturers and tutors make it clear what “acceptable” views are, and if you stray from those views, you are “cancelled” and penalized academically. This is of course consistent with the historical record of “socialism” always resulting in tyranny, oppression, and ultimately the bloody elimination of dissenters.

The Thinker has been a lawyer for 28 years and is a devoted husband and father.


Anonymous said...

Universities in NZ have been captured by DEI. Preferential places, to own spaces, they are racist.

Anonymous said...

“black” and “brown” folk in New Zealand - i assume 'brown' represents maori and pacific islanders (maybe even includes immigrants from the indian subcontinent); who are the 'black' mentioned here? is this 'oppression olympics' simply copied from US?

Anonymous said...

WTF is a "safe space" all about? "Safe" in what way, from whom, and why is this necessary? I can see it for cis women where it is gender based, but for Maori and Pacifika? All those "once were warrior" big Maori boys and girls need to feel safe? Since Maori tribes are usually at war with each other over land and resources, maybe each tribe needs a "safe space" so they won't be attacked and eaten by other tribes.
Enough of this woke nonsense, and fire any "professor" who pushes critical race theory and Marxism.

Eamon Sloan said...

I can’t recall where I read it recently but the writer’s definition of DEI was:

Divisive Excessive Ineffective.

CXH said...

The fact NZ is white supremacist must explain why there are so many Asians in prison.

Or perhaps it is not just brown or white. Maybe it is more about who wants to be a victim.

Anonymous said...

In my book, anyone who exhorts "Aotearoa" is not worth a nanosecond of my time. I suggest others think similarly.

Anonymous said...

Cut all taxpayer funding - now. They cannot have it both ways.

Alumni have already done this in large numbers.

Anonymous said...

So basically this isn’t about racism. It is about a power grab to radically transform society into what they think it should be: a communist hellhole. Hard pass. We need to stamp this out. Bring back the sedition laws because they are needed to stop this.

Gaynor said...

I have been reading extracts from James Lindsay's 'The Marxification of Education' which is a critical review of Paoulo Freire's 'Pedagogy of the Oppressed'. Freire's book is the third most listed in social science's reading lists in the Western World.

If like me you don't want to spend time and money reading Freire's book Thomas Harper gives a good lengthy review of it and James Lindsay's book on line. Show your Uni. children this.

Freire seems to be the main architect of Woke and Critical Studies. It is not just tertiary institutions that are targeted but even primary and preschools.
Freire a Brazilian and severely affected by the Depression of the 1930's consequently ,developed an extreme view of SES and racist gaps through a Marxist lens.

My parents also lived through the Depression and saw quite severe hardship but their answer was emphasis on a universal solid basic education which NZ fortunately had in that era. Brazilian Favelas are not our experience and Freire's Progressive - Marxist ideology should not be ours either.

By specifically not focusing on effective basic education Dewey's Progressivism , from the 1950's on wards has gradually produced the SES and racial differences we in NZ, now have.

Solution-return to Tradition Education's methods, discipline and ethics. This is the way social mobility and equality can occur.

Anonymous said...

As advised by the author of the main piece, I read the article" Time to dismantle our rotting house".

This author, a Samoan national and holder of a Harvard law degree ( funded by a Fulbright Scholarship), is a lecturer at Auckland Law School. His Harvard qualification focused on CRT (critical race theory) - which he now teaches at ALS. Certainly he is a distinguished legal academic.

But two aspects arise:

1.On a professional level, while entitled to his own views on the need to eradicate "white supremacy", it is questionable whether he should be using his occupation to push these views. Unless these are actually the official views of Auckland University and he is acting an its agent in this regard? If so, AU is inviting disapproval and even cancellation of funding support from certain ( perhaps many) alumni. He is therefore a liability to AU.

2. On a personal level, this academic invites justified ridicule, He has benefitted greatly from specific aspects of the very system that he wishes to dismantle: an excellent education - free of racial bias and support for advanced legal studies - again free of racial bias.

Thus his own evident success invalidates his strong criticisms of the system to dismantle.

Don said...

What utter rubbish he writes and typical of the woke academics infecting our universities today. In my years at 'varsity we admired most of our teachers for their considered and knowledgeable discourse. How could such a dimwit hold a university post?

Peter van der Stam, Napier said...

I am very sorry for the guy, still being a Marxist.
My father in law was a professional military man.( Captain )
His oldest son at the time was about 18.
Father in law had a very wise saying, all during the so called : Cold war era.


Might our Brazilian professor fit in the second category.
This kind of people are the ones who cause the rot and should be send to their own country of origine. OOPS!! Am I a racist??