Wednesday, 9 February 2011

I am here for my father

Metiria Turei, co-leader of the Green Party, gave a speech in reply to the Prime Minister's opening address to the House.

It is a stunning speech, which she opens by saying, "I am here for my father."

She goes on to talk about her father as an ordinary New Zealander, who just wanted a decent job, so that he could earn enough money to support his wife and their two children.

Even as text printed on a page, it is a powerful speech. I urge you to read it.

Green Party response to the Prime Minister's opening statement: I am here for my father

(Disclosure: I am not a member of the Green party, nor of any political party, and I have never voted Green.)


Carol said...

Yes, this provides a strong counter-narrative to the one promoted by our government through the personal stories of Paula Bennett and John Key. Key and Bennett use their life stories to promote an NZ version of the log cabin to White House myth, then pull up the ladder behind them. I watched the videos of Turei's speech:

I particularly found the last section of the 2nd video most moving.

I have voted Green in the past, and Metiria is a very good reason to do so again. She produces some very smart and well-researched pieces of analysis and critiques of the government (and other parties like Labour when appropriate). I've seen some very good speeches and questions from her on the TV broadcasts of parliament.

In the above videos, Metiria weaves the story of her father well into a narrative about the changes in government policies since the 1980s, and humanises the impact of the changes on the least well-off and least powerful sections of society. She also humanises the impact of neoliberal policies on women, especially young single women with children.

In the process, Metiria produces a very powerful critique of the impact of neoliberal policies and the unfair, socially unjust and unequal impacts they have on low income people, especially on Maori and women.

Mikaere Curtis said...

Metiria is one of my friends, and I'm in the Greens so I've seen here speak on many occasions.

This is by far and away the best speech I have seen her give.

It speaks to the best of visions for Aotearoa, building on our tradition of fairness for all, and contrasts this starkly with the for-the-rich-only agenda of the Key government.

Here's a link to the Green Party site, which includes both clips and some highlights in text.

Lyn W said...

Fantastic speech Wonderful sincere delivery A very positive start to election year for the Greens!