Scores of people on social media and in the media have been labelling those at the protest everything from terrorists to neo nazis to white supremacists to a danger to democracy. Apart from a few vox pops, no one has made a serious effort to find out who the majority of people there are, and why they are there.
Up until now. Sean Plunket’s The Platform commissioned Curia Market Research to conduct a scientific survey of the protesters at Parliament. Curia staff spent all day Saturday and Sunday at Parliament asking a few short questions of those present.
The response rate was an unprecedented 95%. Only a handful of people declined to be surveyed. The vast majority were eager that there was finally someone there wanting to know who they were and why they were there.
While I was concerned about health and safety issues, my staff report that they did not encounter any threatening behaviour at all. In fact they say even the Mongrel Mob members there were polite. Maybe 1% of those surveyed made a critical comment of the fact the staffer was masked (and the response was that their employer had asked them to be masked), but that was it.