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Marc My Words: The 'nut-brigade' are at it again

Marc My Words…

21 April 2006
Political comment By Marc Alexander

The 'nut-brigade' are at it again

In the rush to legislate on the few remaining liberties we have left, clearly some won't be satisfied until we reach the point where we dare not even venture to the toilet until an official spokesperson from the ministry of ablutions gives us the 'okay'. Case in point: what kind of adults will our children grow up to be when are sending them all the wrong messages? Just think of the recent spate of anti-family, anti -individual twaddle that has (dis)graced the pages of our daily news?

As an example we have had a continuing campaign led by the tireless advocate of state intrusion, Sue Kedgely, who, along with co-conspiritor the Obesity Action Coalition (OAC), want to curb the size and sales of certain foods deemed injurious to the waistlines of Kiwis. They do not trust the kids to figure things out nor their parents to exert their responsibilities so they are demanding regulation, legislation, and taxpayer funded campaigns as a remedy. In short they want to mandate what we put into our mouths by restricting what food businesses can provide, by taxing items 'they' (the self-annointed experts), deem as unhealthy choices at a premium, and putting expanded cigarette type warning labels on everything that can ever potentially cause harm to anybody at any time. Their over-creative imaginations certainly remain unrestrained by the realities of this universe! It won't be long before beer will come with a scull and crossbones on it and a warning not to swallow the bottle!

Now these purveyors of pessimism are joined by a group of surgeons - with no hint of financial self-interest of course - who are preparing a proposal to the Health Select Committee to have 'bariatric' operations available for obese kids paid for by taxpayers! Despite acknowledging that the best way to be less weighty remains a sensible eating plan and excersise, these scalpel-waving buffoons are demanding that families who are responsible for themselves and their kids will have their tax dollars diverted to those who choose not to be!

The appeal for government to again intercede is yet another abdication of personal responsibility which will have the effect of absolving parental duty. It is state interference gone mad. The issue is simple enough: If we care enough to accept the responsibility of being a parent in the first place then we should care enough about what they eat and how they excersise. If parents don't accept those responsibilities, and as a consequence endanger their kids, then charge them with abuse but don't expect everyone else to be their financial co-sponsors!

But it gets worse…

A father who comes to the aid of his daughter because of persistent bullying at school now gets a criminal record for it! What this father - Daryl Falcon - did was grab this thug by the scruff of the neck and yelled at him to stop bullying. Frankly the bully's mother should have thanked the man for doing the job she clearly should have done but wasn't capable of. Instead, she insisted that this man be punished for doing what any decent self-respecting father would do in similar circumstances. The fact that families around the country have offered to pay the $500 fine is proof enough that commonsense has yet to be totally defeated by these sanctimonious state interventionists!

The judge overseeing the case tried to make the point that the father's actions sent the wrong message to the bully. Oh really? Considering the mother couldn't or wouldn’t stop the bullying, nor did the school, it seems to me that the fathers actions were not only understandable but laudably restrained. It sent the 'right' message but what good it might have done was subsequently undone by the court. The resulting message to this bully was "go on and keep bullying, because the law will criminalise anyone who does to you what you do to others but are held unaccountable for due to your age".

This sorry example is but one more win for the lunatics who have not only lost the plot but clearly never had it in their grip the first place. They have rewarded bullying by saving us from the obviously erronious concept that individual action has a consequence. School bullies around the country will derive great comfort from the realisation that they can goad adults into threatening them and then see them put in the dock and turned into criminals. Anyone who might have been tempted to support Green MP Sue Bradford's anti-reasonable force bill should take another look after this woeful legal decision. The repeal of section 59, despite the protestations of its advocates, will clearly be enforced to the letter of the law and criminalise good parents. Especially if we have some childless exuberant pimply twenty-year old with little life experience to act on behalf of CYF's. It is an absolute certainty that more of these screwy decisions will follow.

But while all the talk has revolved around the father, there has been nothing about the victim in all this - his daughter. Where is the apology to her? Neither the bully nor his parents have express regret. The lot of them should hang their heads in shame and start dealing with the real issue - the abusive bullying which, if unchecked, will set him up for a rendevous with the criminal justice system in a few years. How many other victims might he then create along the way?

The really dumb thing about this whole shameful incident is that had the father been a cabinet minister who had previously been paid, and entrusted, to look after and educate children, and shoved tennis balls into their mouth and taped their hands to the desk, he wouldn't have been charged at all!

It's not just P.C., it's B.S.!


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