Every passenger seems to know something about what might be causing the strange noise in my car. They’re not mechanics, so I don’t listen to them. I’ll go to my cousin Raymond. He’s been studying and working on engineering and cars for decades. He knows more than me about cars and I trust his knowledge. …
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“Why are we listening to this monkey language?” Said the racists in Paraparaumu standing next to our tamariki.
It’s not just pride in overcoming that anxiety when I kōrero Māori. It’s hope for the future and respect for the past. Every time I stumble slowly over te reo Māori instead of the language caned into my Nana, it’s for her. My words pay respect to the price she paid for the chance to speak our tongue, going back. Those words reach out in hope for you and maybe your tamariki and uri, to feel that connection and place in the world, going forward.
If you watched George Floyd’s death earlier this year, or the riots and thought how lucky we are to live in Aotearoa where we don’t have systemic racism, you’re in the privileged position of not being subjected to it.
As we were driving from Otaki a few months back, a swarm of Mongrel Mob bikers roared past us. Kāhu, you stared wide-eyed as you do at every motorbike. I watched because I’ve been told all my life that the physical power they carry is strength – wide shoulders, tough fists, and leather – and that I should look up to strength. Society tells boys like you especially, Kāhu, that being a man means being strong: don’t cry, be brave, fight, never back down.
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Check out episode four of our Paperback Guerrillas Podcast with Dr. Ben Walker. We talk about performance-based-identity, parenting, career and more. Visit here for the episode, or search Paperback Guerrillas in your podcast app: https://bit.ly/2WMfe0t from Pera Barrett https://ift.tt/3bO8h3y via IFTTT