Soper backs flag change


After the counting of almost 1.6 million votes, or just on 49 per cent of the eligible voters, the Kyle Lockwood, black, white and blue design’s been chosen. In my book it’s the right one of the two that in reality stood a bolter’s show of making the final cut.

The black over the red is sensible. Black is the colour New Zealand’s known for on the international sporting stage, from the All Blacks, to the Black Ferns to the Black Caps to name just a few of the standouts. Red on the other hand denotes the blood we’ve spilt at home and in foreign theatres of war, most of it needlessly.

To say that changing our flag is in some way disrespectful to those who fought in foreign climes is bollocks.

Having travelled to every battlefield we’ve fought on around the world, some of them with our old diggers, the story almost to a man was they went away to fight for a sense of adventure. The flag, King and country never came into it.

The thousands of those who didn’t make it back home lie in graves marked, not by the New Zealand flag, but by a silver fern.

The silver fern is the global symbol for New Zealand, and I’d love to see it on our flag.

Let’s now hope this is the first leg of the trifecta. We’ve chosen the right flag to go up against the current one, let’s now take this one in a lifetime opportunity to show we’re a country with our own identity and ditch the Union Jack.

I love our history and heritage with the UK, but I think having their flag on ours makes us look like a colony, not an independent country.

One can only hope that Labour can now finally move on from its feeble opposition to the money spent and the way the referendum was conducted and climb on board it’s own policy of getting rid of the current flag by referendum.

No chance sadly.

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