I agree with Rachel Smalley: I need a lie down

?I need a lie down: I agree with Rachel Smalley. Rachel often fails to see the big picture and allows emotions to get in the way of facts. She supports Muslim refugees, for example, without understanding what Islam actually is and what it does. She fails to look at the long-term effects of short-term decisions because she bases most of her views on emotion.

However, when it comes to her analysis of what happened in my home town of Kawerau I find myself one hundred percent in agreement with her, but not for the same reasons. As usual Rachel’s emphasis is on emotion and it is the alleged shooter’s family’s lack of emotion and empathy that has turned her against them. Personally, I am against them because of the facts. Their relative was 100% in the wrong. He injured four people who were simply doing their job. Instead of helping the police they interfered and tried to blame the police for a situation created by their relative.

…Somehow, as the alleged gunman remained barricaded inside a house, somehow he became the victim.

Four policemen were shot — four people who, as part of our police force, we task with upholding peace and justice in this country.

I can only imagine the anguish for their families, potentially their children, their parents, their siblings and partners. They got up that day, they went to work, and four were shot.

What were they doing?

I understand they were searching for cannabis plants — so, investigating the possibility of some illegal activity at the property.

And then they heard the sound of a shotgun discharging. The alleged gunman remained in the house — and then his family arrived on the side of the road.

His concerned mother said she feared her son would be carried out of the house in a box. The extended family said police needed to involve whanau in negotiations. The man’s mother said police had — quote — a “preconceived outcome”.

And suddenly, just like that, the man who’s alleged to have shot four policemen, he somehow became the victim in this.

How did that happen? How did he become the victim? Where was the extended family’s empathy or compassion for the four police who’d been shot?

In the first instance, I would think you would decry what had happened that day. You would express your concern and sympathy for the wounded — but instead the alleged gunman’s mother accused police of having — quote — a “preconceived outcome”.

If you raise a rifle and fire bullets at four policemen, I would suggest you also had a “preconceived outcome”.

There was no accountability from the family. No compassion for the true victims. And a complete lack of empathy for the four people — who also have mothers — who had been shot. And that perhaps, is at the core of this issue.

What happens to children who are raised in an environment devoid of empathy? What do they become when they grow up?

If you are raised without empathy, if you are raised by parents or caregivers who can emotionally dissociate from the suffering of others, if you are raised in an environment where you can view the suffering of others without feeling a sense of distress yourself, then you, yourself, will never develop empathy.

You will become a morally and emotionally bankrupt adult.

And you will always, always see yourself as the victim.


Now, if only Rachel could apply this rationale to other groups who promote themselves as victims in order to get what they want. I cannot think of any group more morally and emotionally bankrupt than devout followers of the pedophile prophet Muhammad. How else do they manage to stone women to death for being raped? How else do they maim and murder their daughters and wives in so called honour killings? How else do they throw gay men off the tops of tall buildings and stab Israelis to death as they do their shopping? How else do they rape a child bride while ignoring her screams of pain and sobs of distress and call it a marriage?