Ricardo Menéndez March & Dr Elizabeth Kerekere: A tale of two Greens

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It was a tale of two greens last week.

Dr Elizabeth Kerekere was introducing a Member’s Bill to amend the Human Rights Act to include gender identity, gender expression, and sex characteristics as prohibited grounds of discrimination.

Now while I have deep concerns about the hate speech legislation and will argue vigorously against it, that doesn’t mean I don’t support adding gender identity, gender expression, and sex characteristics as things people can’t discriminate against.

It isn’t acceptable to discriminate against the Trans community for jobs, services or rentals and we shouldn’t tolerate them being discriminated against, by side stepping the hate speech issue altogether, Kerekere is cleverly advancing progress where we can find common ground.

The other Green example from last week was Ricardo Menéndez March who was attacked for leaving the country during the pandemic. It seems he is very similar to Golriz in that 90% of the criticism thrown at both of them is garbage.

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This issue of him leaving NZ to visit sick family however teetered on the edge of legitimate criticism and just spiteful bullshit.

Leaving the country during a pandemic to nurse sick family is a personal decision and even if it contravened offical advice not to fly, it is a personal choice the rest of us should respect. Where it got questionable was the leaning on officials when trying to book into MIQ and the entire issue of him bringing his partner back through MIQ with him, however his work with AAAP before he became a Green candidate is too important to allow him to be crucified.

It is more important than ever that voices promoting the rights of beneficiaries are heard in Parliament and it is essential he gets back to that work.

The Greens are trying to progress change but seem to be hampered by a lack of clear goals and actual change, my fear is the little they gain won’t be enough to hold the attention of impatient voters and that would be a tragedy because as useless as the Greens are, they are essential for the debate.

I don’t know if anyone in the Greens have noticed, but the climate is melting and starting to breach tipping points from which we can’t return. Identity Politics is fine and dandy, but promoting those rights will mean nothing if the planet is a burnt crisp upon which we can’t live.

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35 COMMENTS

  1. Given that this unprecedented majority MMP Govt. shows no signs whatsoever of supporting working class people re housing and MSD/WINZ , Green and Maori Partys will likely assume a lot of importance in 2023.

    So it would be good to see more people encouraging the Greens to shift class left rather than just bollocking them. Sure if they deserve it, but not the default setting.

    Prior to Riccardo there has only been one MMP MP who understood and advocated for Beneficiaries-yes another Green-Sue Bradford.

      • You are making assumptions about the varied reasons and length of time people are on unemployment. You are also discounting the fact that most people on unemployment have works for most of their lives and find themselves temporarily in need of state help. Who are you to define what “working class” is?

  2. I agree with freedom of expression but one thing I don’t agree with is biological men declaring that they are gender female (at some level of transition) and then assuming the rights of a biological woman without question, such as inhabiting female safe spaces or competing in women’s sport. If a majority of women or girls don’t feel right about sharing space with biological men (it’s their decision and no one else’s) then we need to accept Jacinda’s mantra that the ‘people have spoken’ in majority. The alternative is to create between three and a hundred different restrooms for the hundred identifiable pronouns so everyone feels safe

    • Jody – What Elizabeth seems to me to be saying is that before colonialists arrived and buggered ( no pun intended) everything up, N Z Maori enjoyed a sexual free-for- all, with no holds barred, a status quo which makes Libertarians look like Welsh Methodist villagers.

      With pre-schoolers now being taught to talk of their vulvas, primary school boys receiving masturbation enlightenment ( as if they needed to) and gender identification and gender choices being part of the primary school curriculum (in order to stop children getting confused about sex…), sharing a lavatory space may be a minor sort of matter. I don’t fancy it, and little school girls could find it unpleasant, but that’s not the way that policy makers are paid to think.

      Penis-born persons competing as lady shotput throwers may be another minor sort of matter compared to the information overload being imposed upon innocent young children, seemingly to compensate for our historical barbarism towards homosexuality, but quite possibly for no good reason, and quite possibly quite damaging.

      • There are Māori women who disagree with Elizabeth Kerekere’s arguments. She is well onboard with trans/genderism. Other Māori women have given me a different perspective on it and say there has not been widespread discussion about the issues across all iwi and Marae.

        As I understand it, a recent representation to the Mana Wāhine Inquiry, ( https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/te-manu-korihi/435730/mana-wahine-inquiry-original-claimant-ripeka-evans-gives-evidence ) could actually be saying that sex-based differences mattered to Te Ao Māori, but in a totally different way from the way it has been traditionally understood in European culture.

        All this needs a much more widespread discussion than has been allowed in NZ/Aotearoa so far. The Greens don’t accept any views that do not meet with genderist ideology – which is a neoliberal import from the US.

  3. “The Greens are trying to progress change”

    No they’re not Martyn. They’re just taking the salary and eventually trying to get an MPs pension. They’re Green – right up until the point where they get free air travel.

    In our MMP system there will always be 5% of the population stupid, bewildered or naïve enough to get them re-elected.

    • Agreed that Martyn’s attempt to talk up these two plonkers is very unconvincing. But you’re possibly being a bit harsh on voters – I have no idea who to vote for, as I can’t see any appealing options at present.

      • Guess why Ricardo Menéndez March & Dr Elizabeth Kerekere are in parliament and contributing to the running of the country while you are on the side-lines senselessly pontificating.

        • “contributing to the running of the country” … cough, splutter … look I nearly choked on my kombucha, and it’s all your fault.

  4. The problem with Mr Menendez is his back story seems to be falling apart at the seams when more than a cursory glance is applied. On that basis yes, he is similar to Goriz.

    • When one takes more than a cursory glance at your comment, it falls apart. That is, unless Luxon, Muller and numerous other incompetents and the odd potential war crimes committers are given a free passes on their back stories.

    • Care to elaborate on his backstory @FtT? Is there something Earth-shattering you know that he doesn’t?
      I’d be obliged if you could set me straight. So far I haven’t seen any inconsistencies, but of course I’m willing to defer to your superior opinion and intellect. (‘cos I’m just that sorta guy). I’ll drop everything and check back at every opportunity so I don’t miss any of your spectacular wisdom.

      • Mr Menendez preaches how he was on the bones on his arse before becoming an MP yet can afford half a dozen trips back to Mexico. You’ll also find he lived in a well-to-do neighborhood back home in Mexico and if memory serves me his father is a leading Health Professional.

        Not earth shattering however we have been led down the garden path that Mr Menendez is a poor student from Mexico whereas truth APPEARS somewhat different to that.

        As far as National MPs go I think you’ll find i’m brutally honest about my views on Uncle Fester, Todd from accounts and many others. Indeed i’m an equal opportunist when it comes to pointing out idiocy and ineptitude.

        Love your personal comments – always appreciate myself being included in the same sentences as “superior” and “spectacular”.

        Carry on

        Love Frank

      • Probably something to do with his claims to be a poor, downtrodden and oppressed person-of-colour (who, incidentally, voluntarily came to little old “racist” NZ) who (as is typical of many such individuals) is actually the well-off son of a doctor who is so poor that he can afford to fly home to Mexico every Christmas for the past few years. I’m sure that the pattern established has nothing to do with the timing of his relative’s “illness.”

        • Wow – talk about putting white middle-class expectations on societies that are a world away from NZ! Your comment not only comes across as classist and racist but oozes of conceit and perhaps a touch of envy. To prove you are on a par with Ricardo Menéndez March’s father, feel free use your medical degree in Tijuana then tell us how wealthy you become.

          • Well your comments come across as ignorant and provincial. Mexico has a precipitous wealth gap, sure, but it also has a prosperous middle class and an obscenely rich elite. Tijuana is very wealthy because it’s right on the US border and is a major manufacturing centre. Mexico is an OECD country, dude. The racism is you assuming it’s a third world dump.

            • Not a bad ort effort to teach someone how to suck eggs, however’ the debate was around whether or not the MP’s father was an ‘obscenely wealthy’ doctor. All the indications from on-line research suggest he was not.
              Talking about assumptions, how about, “The racism is you assuming it’s a third world dump.” That seems a pretty apt example.

  5. It’s hard for the Greens to convince people that we’re in a climate emergency when devoting time and energy to sideshows.
    Why doesn’t every policy and announcement of theirs come from a context of the climate emergency?
    That would be something.

    • It could be the germs undermining capitalism. On all sorts of fronts, it could be developed into a new society. It’s not overwhelming a better world but there are enough victories.

  6. As an observation, the media clamoured all over the Ricardo Menéndez March story but seemed to give one of their colleagues a free pass for using exactly the same rules to return from covering the US Presidential election and its aftermath.

  7. I agree that trans and other gender non-conforming people should have protections against discrimination in housing, employment, etc.

    However, the addition of “sex characteristics” will mislead many people, and is a bit of a Trojan horse for sex self-identification. I think the aim of Labour & Greens is to replace “sex” as a protected characteristic, with “sex characteristics”. The “sex” protection enables female only spaces for intimate care and spaces, sports etc.

    Traditionally ‘sex characteristics’ are separated into primary and secondary sex characteristics. I understand the Lab-Green aim is to collapse these 2 categories into 1.

    Primary sex characteristics are the ones identified/observed and recorded at birth. Secondary sex characteristics are mostly those that result from puberty, and some of them can be somewhat altered by the environment, medication, surgery, etc.

    Short version: https://sciencing.com/primary-secondary-sexual-characteristics-8557301.html

    Longer version: https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/primary-sexual-characteristics

    So, basically, by replacing ‘sex’ as a protected characteristic, with a more vague ‘sex characteristics’, i assume that means any male who claims to be female in terms of any of an array of secondary sex characteristics, can claim to be a female and have access to female spaces etc.

    Apart from anything else, it is bad science, and doesn’t represent biology.

    And when the Bill is presented to the House, people need to look carefully at the definitions used.

    • Are Labour and the Greens really trying to replace “sex/gender,” with “sex characteristics ? “ And if so, why ?

      The flawed thinking and pitfalls are mind-boggling. Thanks.

      • The whole thing is mind boggling. But following the money, and origins of genderism internationally is sobering. NZ Labour & Greens are jumping on board with little critique, and not encouraging public debate on it.

        ‘sex characteristics’ was in the latest recommendation of the UN periodic review of NZ Human Rights – ‘sex characteristics’ recommended by Iceland.

        “Add gender identity, gender expression or sex characteristics as specifically prohibited grounds of discrimination in Article 21 of the Human Rights Act of 1993”
        [#51: in table of recommendations] https://www.justice.govt.nz/assets/Documents/Publications/7551-Proactive-Release-Third-Universal-Periodic-Review.pdf

        The NZ government response so far is to take note of this.

        It’s mentioned in this OIA response to Ani O’Brien, under Public Consultations a way down the document:

        https://fyi.org.nz/request/11732/response/44583/attach/9/Response%20to%20request%20for%20information%20Ref%20200300%20FINAL.pdf

        Also mentioned are the Yogyakarta Principles. These were devised by a self-selected group, that included some billionaire US transwomen (ie males) like Martine Rothblatt.

        https://uncommongroundmedia.com/martine-rothblatt-a-founding-father-of-the-transgender-empire/

        https://www.researchgate.net/publication/344133865_Background_to_the_Yogyakarta_Principles

        These Principles have no legal standing, have not gone through democratic processes, but internationally the UN, and many NZ state authorities eg Stats NZ, accept them as the state of play on genderism

        Rothblatt is something else – he has written a book about transgenderism being a step towards trans humanism – ie technology over nature and biology.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martine_Rothblatt

        • Oh God. This reminds me of why I pulled out of a second half- year Women’s Studies paper at VU in the 90’s. Our whole group felt the same – we had to work in groups because women are caring and sharing, and group projects reduce the number of assignments needing to be marked – and we felt we were being used, which we were. I also tutored in another VU Dept.

          Most of the above authors seem to be males transgendering to female. The only two I know personally, obsess about it, and talk of it constantly. One is good company as either male or female, and has very different personas depending upon which he is that day. The younger one says that her life has improved since she became a woman. Both grew up in sadly majorly dysfunctional families.

          The prospect of New Zealand legislation being drafted providing definitions of
          “sex characteristics “ is alarming, when in this country, gender differences are very polarised, and to me, culturally and socially crude. The prospect of just adopting UNO definitions or recommendations looks even worse.

          Importantly, none of the human rights issues which should be concerning us here in New Zealand, such as our terrible child violence, and incest, and battered partners, and homelessness, and poverty, will be positively impacted upon; decent mental health funding does little to address societal root causes.

          I assume that current UK requirement to ban reference to breast milk and replace it with human milk or chest milk (also physiologically wrong) is part of this murky picture, along with abolishing referencing, maternity and maternal.
          Superficially it looks like the degradation of inherently female nurturing characteristics; ironically it seems to be being lead by ex-males or wannabe females.

          Government needs to tread cautiously and intelligently before even considering, let alone actioning, global trends in gender machinations – we have
          far greater needs on our own home patch – as well as that other matter of climate change, languishing in the too-hard basket.

          • Agree, Snow White.

            Of course people should not be discriminated in employment, housing, etc., because of not conforming to gender norms. But when the gender activists go after working women’s jobs because they don’t subscribe to gender group think (and it has happened in NZ as well as other western countries…. well there’s nothing progressive about that – and it is most usually gender critical women’s jobs they go after.

            Climate change, housing affordability crisis, and income and wealth inequalities should be top of the agenda for action by any left wing government… if only we had one?!

            But removing sex as a legal category, along with removing the rights, services and protections long fought for by women… and gays an lesbians, without widespread, well-informed public debate should not be slipped in under the radar while those pressing issues are getting all the attention.

            • Yes. There was a time when women who married men were regarded as traitors by some butch lesbians, as were pretty gay women who dressed pretty. I recently saw a young activist I’ve not previously sighted in person, and her arrogant strut appalled me. It looked bullying. I’ve not known gay men to be socially aggressive or disruptive as gay women can be, and upon reflection, I would be more than happy to have them as tenants – they are also pretty good colleagues and neighbours.

              Of course we can’t rely on Parliament to get gender issues right when for some explicable reason, they usually seem more than happy to consult the fox about fowl-house safety.

              Climate change should be the top priority for any govt of any persuasion, and I put the well-being of our beautiful children up there too, but instead newbie after newbie arrives in Parliament to talk about themselves. Abolish maiden speeches too- although I daresay that some were people worthy.

  8. Can’t stand Ricardo and aren’t a fan of him. However have no problem him going overseas for a family emergency as long as he pays for quarantine and doesn’t get treated specially in MIQ

Comments are closed.