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Monday, March 30, 2009

Misspelling of Whanganui to end. Another Egmont moment

The reactionary, proudly white Mayor of "Wanganui" considers that the desecration of Maori names is, to use RNZ's words, the city's culture and heritage. Racism and disrespect of Maori is the city's culture and heritage according to the Pakeha Mayor. And he wants that to continue. And when his council's gang insignia bill goes through it will be open season on Maori. Today it has been announced that the NZ Geographic Board have decided that the equivalent of spelling Palmerston North "Pamerston North" should end. Whanganui means great harbour, "Wanganui" is the Pakeha bastardisation of that name.

The local Pakeha pronunciation of the name sounds the same - to me as an outsider - as the local Maori pronunciation. That is a rare thing indeed in the mangled, lazy half-attempts at proper Maori pronunciation of Maori place names that have through repetition become the accepted norm - even amongst non-Tangata Whenua Maori. Dropping the last vowel in speech often emphasising the Europeanisation of the word into something a Maori would not even understand is common. So you would think that in a place where everyone speaks with one voice - literally - it would indicate a level of Maori-Pakeha harmony. Of course not - this is still New Zealand.

But the local Pakeha preference to insist on the misspelling as if it were just an issue they themselves can determine as a phonetic choice or imposition on the Tangata Whenua sadly encapsulates the morbid racism that pervades the conquered Maori provinces. The NZ Geographic Board was hardly going to endorse the continuation of a misspelt Whanganui:
[UPDATE: And the standard type of response from those Pakeha who use their ignorance as attempted humour when faced with a Maori outcome instead of their preferred European one - a resort to idiocy:
What else can they say after a policy of misspelling something - deliberately and thoughtlessly - for 150+ years? The response is an infantile series of non sequiturs that presumably Pakeha are supposed to find amusing. Do they?

The trait is quite common: And that sarcastic post was from an English immigrant. You step off the plane and you can start telling the natives how to spell their own language - that's the vibe. And if they are proved wrong by a Crown board (the white man's law) - well, Maori have a dumb language anyway and they fail at school - that's what these New Zealanders think and what they want the rest of the country to know. --UPDATE ENDS]
[UPDATE -- 31/03/2009:
As I said, a standard response from a certain Pakeha sector:Unoriginal and unfunny.

But this struck me as amusing in the context of the discussion:When I saw only the headline I thought it was because the subbies had misspelt Whanganui all this time. --UPDATE ENDS]

19 Comments:

At 30/3/09 1:50 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would support this if only Maori stopped bastardizing English. Eg. "aks" instead of "ask", "youse" instead of "you" etc. And fuck I'm sick of the word "bro". Goes both ways and there is nothing wrong with being "proudly white".

 
At 30/3/09 1:51 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And what a typical Maori reaction when they don't get their own way - a brick through Laws' kid's bedroom. What wankers.

 
At 30/3/09 2:02 pm, Blogger Chris said...

Good write up Tim.

Although people often slip into doom-and-gloom crap about how Pakeha and Maoridom will never peacefully coexist, this is tangible progress.

 
At 30/3/09 4:46 pm, Blogger Carl Marks said...

If Michael Laws wasn't such a bigoted arsehole, he'd probably spend more time on more substantial issues, such as improving the standard of life in Whanganui.

Let's face it, 'h' or no 'h' - Whanganui is still a sit-hole.

 
At 30/3/09 5:48 pm, Blogger peterquixote said...

so how much money you bet Tim, on Taiwan maps of NZ printed next year carrying the pc name, WH, Tim : how much you bet Tim ?

 
At 30/3/09 7:59 pm, Anonymous sawatdee said...

Well written Tim. This is a no-brainer & people just need to get in tune.

 
At 30/3/09 8:46 pm, Blogger peterquixote said...

you probably right dudes, lets see,

 
At 30/3/09 9:11 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If Michael Laws wasn't such a bigoted arsehole, he'd probably spend more time on more substantial issues, such as improving the standard of life in Whanganui."

So does having violent Maori gangs intimidating you actually make life more enjoyable?

 
At 30/3/09 9:23 pm, Blogger peterquixote said...

Tim,
with tipene o'regan on the board of political crap; nz geographical remap
and being the the irish person and that he is,
could we have some more irish spelling in wangaganuri,
or would that just be too english,

 
At 30/3/09 10:31 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yep, good on you Tim, and good on the board.

And what a typical Maori reaction when they don't get their own way - a brick through Laws' kid's bedroom

Oh yeah. There are quite a few thousand Maori in Whanganui.

I guess Laws must have enough free bricks to just about build the extension on the art gallery by now then right? No? There was just one brick and no one knows who threw it? Well fuck me then. I guess that makes you the wanker.

 
At 31/3/09 9:07 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

to be fair....Wanganui should be renamed "shithole"cause it is.

 
At 31/3/09 10:19 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

that is a great post by the english man. HOW VERY APT!!!

 
At 31/3/09 11:08 am, Blogger Dave said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 31/3/09 11:13 am, Blogger Dave said...

Hey, I'm very happy to have an h in Wanganui. That's my preferred option, in contrast you what you blogged.I'm not the Pakeha boy that is ignorant of Maori concerns, which you should be well aware.That said, there's nothing wrong with taking the piss on occasion. I probably should have labelled the post as such and I now have.

 
At 31/3/09 11:30 am, Blogger Tim Selwyn said...

Dave: I'm not the Pakeha boy that is ignorant of Maori concerns, which you should be well aware.
- I am aware, which is why I dialed the criticism down for you (you know how feral I can get on this take!) - the problem I have is that when satire fails (as I firmly believe this has) you are left asking other questions and finding other answers. Many people who do not share your concerns and who are overt racists will find it fits in perfectly with their view of Maori - as such I have identified your post as a typical anti-Maori response - regardless of your intentions.

 
At 31/3/09 11:58 am, Blogger Tim Selwyn said...

Dave - and Not PC has done exactly what you have done (added in post) so I reaffirm that what you wrote was a standard response from a certain sector.

 
At 31/3/09 12:49 pm, Blogger Dave said...

Tim, point taken. But I cant be responsible for racist or ignorant attitudes of others when I take the piss. And neither can you should you do it on other matters. So So its "not a standard response". Us Pakeha laugh at ourselves, so do Maori among themselves. But if a Maori takes the piss out of a minor Pakeha concern or vice versa it is all of a sudden seen as a redneck attitude, purely because of some rednecks who may read it.I cannot be held responsible or accountable for that.

 
At 31/3/09 6:20 pm, Blogger Barnsley Bill said...

Please do not delete this one Bomber.
The Maori Dictionary post was reproduced at the blog that carries my name. I was very unhappy about the post and you will see from the comments that followed.. Most of my readers were too.
Personally I don't give a shit whether Ken Mair wants an extra H or not. It is such a piffling and inconsequential issue I am stunned that Michael Laws is wasting any air on it. Other than having to fund a few sign changes it makes no difference to anybody at all other than the few who feel aggrieved about the current spelling. If it forestalls another unsupervised child drowning in a fountain when they go militant over it then I say let them have an H. Or a G or any other bloody letter.
Not deleting this comment would be greatly appreciated.

 
At 31/3/09 9:44 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hasnt dawned on the white experts in the forensics of brick throwing, dead kids, and Maori civilisation, that Laws and all his gung ho corporals popping up for a shot or two are a bit like von Tempsky's men, lost in the bush minus their guts.

 

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