Racism in NZ

April 15th, 2012 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

The SST reports:

A self-described “little old Chinese lady” has waded into the debate, saying she has suffered decades of racial abuse.

Victoria Beck, 70, said she has been abused in the street, told to go back to Asia, and even been hit by passers-by, despite calling New Zealand home for most of her life. And the situation was worsening, she said.

“As a little old Chinese lady, I am the target of much more physical, verbal and emotional abuse today.” …

Her complaint came after Blues coach Pat Lam suffered racist attacks on internet message boards and talkback radio because of his team’s failings.

Beck said she was not surprised at the attacks against Lam and his team. She migrated here with her family at the age of six and was given an English name to ease the transition. She later took on her husband’s surname.

But having an English name did not stop the racism, she said. “I want people to know how damn vicious some whites are here. The root of it has always been a colour division.”

She recalls being pushed into the gutter in Auckland’s Parnell by a group of young people who told her to “go home, Asian”.

Growing up here, she said, neighbours would scrawl racist remarks on the footpath outside her home. “I felt shame as if there was something wrong with me, my family, my race,” she said. “Chinese have long been a despised minority here.”

My gut feeling is that Chinese New Zealanders probably suffer the worse overt racism in New Zealand. It’s ironic as they generally have the highest employment rates, educational achievement and lowest crimes rates.

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38 Responses to “Racism in NZ”

  1. gazzmaniac (2,307 comments) says:

    That would be tall poppy syndrome, not racism.

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  2. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Dunedin has had an Asian population for a long time, and has had an Indian and a New Zealander of Chinses descent as mayor. But there is still plenty of racism – against Asians and Maori, and I’ve also known it to happen against Europeans.

    There was what looks like nasty case last weekend.

    Arrests after Dunedin racist attack

    An attack on an Asian family walking along a central Dunedin street yesterday has disappointed police, who say incidents with racial overtones are unusual in the city.

    Senior Sergeant Craig Brown said the family of four, believed to be a couple from Auckland and their two teenage sons, were walking along George St just after 4pm, when they were allegedly verbally abused by a group of drunk people.

    The father was then allegedly punched twice, once by an 18-year-old female in the group and once by an 18-year-old male.

    A 22-year-old female is alleged to have thrown a quarter-full bottle of wine at the father.

    Sad to see this sort of thing so close to home, Actually, close to work, they were found and arrested in a carpark just below the office I work in.

    However, police several hours later attended a disorder incident in Filleul St involving the same group. Three people were arrested and all charged in relation to the earlier incident.

    The 22-year-old female was held in custody and will appear in the Dunedin District Court today on a charge of assault with a weapon. The 18-year-old female was charged with assault and the 18-year-old male with assault and assaulting police.

    As there seems to have been multiple incidents, only one rascist, it appears that this group may have just been drunken thugs looking for any target.
    There’s been a preliminary sequel in court:

    Woman in court over Dunedin racist attack

    A Dunedin woman was remanded in custody when she appeared in the Dunedin District Court yesterday in relation to an attack with racial overtones on an Asian family in Dunedin on Monday

    Charlene Amelia Hunt (22), unemployed, was remanded in custody, by consent, without plea until Thursday on a charge of assault with a weapon.

    For her to be kept in custody there may be other factors other than the one assault.

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  3. Nick C (336 comments) says:

    “It’s ironic as they generally have the highest employment rates, educational achievement and lowest crimes rates.”

    I suspect that may be partly why they are victims of racism, just as Jews are victimised because of their percieved disproportionate success in the commerical world.

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  4. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    However the rascism may be from just a small minority – “the survey showed by far the majority of people had positive feelings towards people of Asian descent”.

    Chin welcomes improved attitudes towards Asians

    A survey showing New Zealanders have increased feelings of warmth towards Asians reflects how “mature” as a society New Zealand is, former Dunedin mayor Peter Chin says.

    The release of the Asia New Zealand survey comes after three people were arrested in Dunedin on Monday in connection with an attack on an Asian family which police said had “racial overtones”.

    Mr Chin, an Asia New Zealand trustee, said the attack was an “isolated incident” and “not typical of the way that Dunedin or New Zealand people behave”.

    The results of the survey showed by far the majority of people had positive feelings towards people of Asian descent, he said.

    In the random survey of 1105 people, carried out from September 5 to October 5, 83% of New Zealanders agreed Asian people contributed significantly to New Zealand society and 78% agreed Asian immigrants brought valuable cultural diversity to New Zealand.

    Negative feelings about Asian immigrants decreased in 2011, with 25% of people believing Asian immigrants took away jobs from New Zealanders compared with 29% in 2010.

    More than four out of five New Zealanders (83%) saw the Asian region as important to New Zealand’s future, which was the highest level recorded since the research was first carried out in 1997.

    Recognition of the economic benefits of a relationship with Asia increased, with 93% of those surveyed agreeing exports to Asia and Asian tourism in New Zealand would have positive impacts on New Zealand in the next two decades.

    Asia New Zealand Foundation chairman Philip Burdon said the report reflected a growing recognition among New Zealanders that Asia was important to New Zealand.

    “It’s heartening the survey shows four out of five New Zealanders agree that Asian immigrants contribute significantly to this country, and bring a valuable cultural diversity.”

    Mr Chin said the survey results were “very encouraging” and reflected how “mature” New Zealand was as a society.

    “It shows that by in large New Zealanders are more accommodating of other ethnicities.”

    People from Dunedin probably had even warmer feelings towards Asians than other parts of New Zealand, which was shown by the fact that he and Sukhi Turner, both of of Asian descent, were elected mayor in the past 15 years, he said.

    We have to be careful not to be label all Kiwis as rascists when only a few shitheads use it as an excuse to abuse and assault.

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  5. Michael (911 comments) says:

    I’m against any one who isn’t of my race – the human race. The rest of you can piss off back to where you came from (and can you give us back Elvis.)

    Plus it’s futile telling humans to go back to where they came. It means all 7 billion of us trying to squeeze into a valley in East Africa.

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  6. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    “It’s ironic as they generally have the highest employment rates, educational achievement and lowest crimes rates.”

    As Nick C says, maybe that’s just a target for those rascists and thugs who generally have the lowest employment rates and educational achievement, and highest crime rates.

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  7. MarkF (102 comments) says:

    A humble observation but part of the reason that Asian (Chinese and Indians) are more prone to being abused is that they are visible. If you think about it English, Americans, Canadians and South Africans are invisible, as migrants, until they open their mouths. Therefore logically those of Asian decent are more likely to be picked out and picked on.

    Not an excuse just an explanation.

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  8. jims_whare (403 comments) says:

    To be honest I am surprised the Chinese people and government aren’t more paranoid toward Caucasian foreigners than what they are. If you think back to how the Chinese were treated in the era of colonialism and at the hands of the Japanese it is suprising they haven’t shut up shop and isolated their country.

    I’d rather have a horde of hard-working Chinese immigrants here than some of the lazy yobs that we let in at the moment
    (Heh especially winging poms!)

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  9. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    Wash your mouth out J-W.

    Without the whinging Poms we would not be blessed with Helen Kelly for example! :)

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  10. cha (4,081 comments) says:

    My gut feeling is that Chinese New Zealanders probably suffer the worse overt racism in New Zealand

    I wouldn’t be so sure about that DPF. The racist reactions from Kiwis that an acquaintance had to put up with when he arrived from Ireland forced him, to cut a long story short, to change his name from Kehoe to Keogh.

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  11. dime (10,108 comments) says:

    helen kelly is a pom? that explains a lot..

    i feel for the chinese. they certainly dont fall under the lefts banner of protection!

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  12. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    Just as well his name wasn’t “Bunghoe” then cha! :)

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  13. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    The Chinese are a wonderful race of people dime, as long as they catch the bus! :)

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  14. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    These days every second vehicle on the highway is a van driven by a Chinese person and his “family member” as are a good half of the tour buses (mandarin speaking Chinese drivers).

    Whether you see foreigners as competition or an asset depends on where you sit in society (assuming morals and wealth aren’t correlated).

    I picked up on this passage from Roughing it by Mark Twain (which to me demonstrates the point):

    They are a kindly disposed, well-meaning race, and are respected and well treated by the upper classes, all over the Pacific coast. No Californian gentleman or lady ever abuses or oppresses a Chinaman, under any circumstances, an explanation that seems to be much needed in the East. Only the scum of the population do it–they and their children; they, and, naturally and consistently, the policemen and politicians, likewise, for these are the dust-licking pimps and slaves of the scum, there as well as elsewhere in America.

    Tags
    Crafar Farms? Harcourts Shanghai?

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  15. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    I feel sorry for ethnically Chinese New Zealanders who get lumped in with the droves brought in to deliver population growth for the Property Council*.

    (* like Federated Farmers only sneaky)

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  16. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    We really should have a different driving license test for Oriental folks.

    Not that I am into apartheid or anything, just into common sense! :)

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  17. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    David Farrar is a bit selective with his statics as i recall another survey where (I recall ) close to 50% said more immigration from Asia wasn’t such a good thing (for them).
    You don’t have to have an opinion on the character of individuals just the numbers.

    P.S I’m married to an Asian.
    P.S Nationals buddies would have us all (not them) living in apartments.

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  18. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    Touchy Issues:
    Crafar Farms (apply “racism”)

    , Sky City Casino (funding) Convention Center: apply “I’m only a businessman helping people enjoy the lighter side of life” – Al Capone

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  19. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    P.S Nationals buddies would have us all (not them) living in apartments.

    I always thought it was a tad strange that Don (ex National Party leader) thought it would be wonderful if we all got rid of our fixation with property ownership and put our spare cash into business investment not housing.

    The really odd part was that the housing property would still exist and someone would still have to own it! :)

    Bill’s fixation with the same thing has me a tad worried.

    Perhaps a National Party guru could explain it all to us dumb pricks? :)

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  20. DJP6-25 (1,389 comments) says:

    hj 2:24 pm. Looks like Mark Twain had the situation summed up.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  21. Liberty (271 comments) says:

    Fortunately the Enoch powell of the south pacific is in his twilight years. Politically a has-been. A very small support base of Rednecks and the infirm.

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  22. Brian Smaller (4,026 comments) says:

    People in China are the most racist people I ever met. They make white power guys look like amateurs.

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  23. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Yes Chinese can be very racist..one city to another , one dialect to another..Just ask the majority of South East Asians what they think of Foo Chows..Mind you , many other people would say the same thing.

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  24. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    Almost beginning to look like we are all racists except to our own race?

    Not Maori of course, who are never racist! :)

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  25. Akaroa (585 comments) says:

    Well, you can always tell when the news scene is getting a bit thin on the ground – that’s when that old chestnut ‘racism’ gets another spin around the block.

    You want to know about so-called ‘racism’ – which is IMHO a catch-all word mostly used by the intellectually lazy to get attention?.

    So-called ‘Racism’ – alright, I’ll use your inaccurate and emotive word – is endemic in the human condition. As an aging poster I have during my longish – (so far!) – life rubbed shoulders with all types, all sectors of society and all strata therof. I therefore claim to know what I’m talking about.

    This ‘racism’ that people talk about is usually nothing more than good old-fashioned class consciousness and envy.

    Example:”Why should that Chinese bloke have a Merc/flash house/good business when all I’ve got is a busted old Toyota/flat/lousy job?”

    Racism? No! Just old fashioned envy.

    There’s another type of so-called ‘racism” too – the emotive dislike of certain nationalities.

    In my case I don’t like Canadians. Why? Because I went to Canada and had my passport stolen, was forced to stay until another was issued and I was ripped off over my accommodation. Illogical? Yes, I agree!. But I know I’ll always view Canadians with suspicion.

    You see I’m a just a fallible human being, and, like all such, i’m prone to drawing what some may see as illogical conclusions from direct personal experience.

    I think some other people do, too!!

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  26. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    Canadians are such sad arsed people and ultra PC too.

    Always pissed off because we confuse them with Yanks and bitter because Yanks are richer and happier than them.

    Not that I’m a bloody racist of course! :)

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  27. chiz (1,164 comments) says:

    PG:As there seems to have been multiple incidents, only one rascist, it appears that this group may have just been drunken thugs looking for any target.

    I agree. Not all reports of racism you see in the media are really about racism. Some of it from people, sometimes drunk or sometimes osber, who think its funny to make fun of, or abuse anyone who isn’t part of their social group. At school this would involve picking on the different kid – black, gay, disabled, or whatever. Out of school it graduates to abusing pedestrians when they drive past. They’ll pick up on any point of difference – age, ethnicity or whatever – and abuse them over that.

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  28. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    Whats more Canadians have to live with the burden of the Quebecois.

    Must be a real problem having an underclass in your nation that drags all your stats downward.

    No wonder they are sad, dour people.

    They need a little distraction now and again! :)

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  29. Sam Hill (42 comments) says:

    I blogged on this last week.

    http://nzsentinel.wordpress.com/2012/04/10/racism-in-new-zealand-its-all-fun-and-games-until-someone-gets-their-head-blown-off/

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  30. swan (665 comments) says:


    I feel sorry for ethnically Chinese New Zealanders who get lumped in with the droves brought in to deliver population growth for the Property Council*.”

    Yeah and you can fuck off back underneath whatever rock you crawled out from under hj, you racist dickhead.

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  31. swan (665 comments) says:

    If you bother to follow the NZ MSM you will note there is far more tolerance for racism against Asians. Apparently “the government” is selling some farms to “the chinese”(!)
    It will only cost them about 20c each as far as I can tell.

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  32. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    DJP6-25 (901) Says:
    April 15th, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    hj 2:24 pm. Looks like Mark Twain had the situation summed up.

    cheers

    David Prosser
    …………………
    mark Twain (continued):

    “Chinamen make good house servants, being quick, obedient, patient, quick to learn and tirelessly industrious. They do not need to be taught a thing twice, as a general thing. They are imitative. If a Chinaman were to see his master break up a centre table, in a passion, and kindle a fire with it, that Chinaman would be likely to resort to the furniture for fuel forever afterward.”
    ……………………….
    “master” no play the game; he no make the rules. And that goes for detached libertarian economists and leftists on fat salaries.

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  33. Daigotsu (465 comments) says:

    “If you think about it English, Americans, Canadians and South Africans are invisible”

    Right, because everybody from England, Canada and America, to say nothing of South Africa, is white! There are certainly no Yellow, Black or Brown English, Canadian, American or South African people!

    Fucking idiot.

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  34. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    swan (283) Says:
    April 15th, 2012 at 7:10 pm


    I feel sorry for ethnically Chinese New Zealanders who get lumped in with the droves brought in to deliver population growth for the Property Council*.”

    Yeah and you can fuck off back underneath whatever rock you crawled out from under hj, you racist dickhead.
    ……………..
    explain “racist”
    http://www.gmi.co.nz/news/514/labours-third-world-solution.aspx

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  35. hj (7,066 comments) says:

    High immigration to New Zealand has contributed to the country’s national savings woes by increasing Government spending, business borrowing costs and pumping up house prices, according to a taskforce charged with finding solutions to rising foreign debt.

    http://www.interest.co.nz/kiwisaver/52140/migration-policy-linked-inflated-housing-prices-government-spending-and-low-savings

    Fast population growth over the past decade has strained infrastructure, boosted house prices and reduced the quality of life in the Auckland region.
    http://img.scoop.co.nz/media/pdfs/0705/RMA__Oram_Paper_May_2007.pdf

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  36. adze (2,129 comments) says:

    It’s unfortunate she perpetuates the myth that only “whites” have a significant racist element. I’ve personally witnessed two serious incidents of public racial abuse in Wellington, yet neither of them were committed by “whites”.

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  37. berend (1,716 comments) says:

    The story just doesn’t sound right. Ias it been vetted properly??

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  38. chessmonster (1 comment) says:

    hey guys, are there any instances here that some applicant get less attention because of his/her race? like if 3 people of the same skin, same skill and same education went to apply for the same job, would the black guy or the asian guy get voted out just because of his color?

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