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This is from the NZ Herald in regard to the Gang Insignia Bill:
Mr [Rodney] Hide said that while he objected to the ban “on principle”, the party had flip-flopped to try to get National’s support for its proposed “three strikes and you’re out” law. He denied it was part of a deal.
“We voted for it [the patch ban] because what it’s going to do is get three strikes through this Parliament.”
At its first reading in April, Mr Hide told Parliament he would happily vote against the bill because it was against the principles of freedom.
“Freedom is about the individual, and the measure of a free society is how we move to protect the minority from the majority. If the majority thinks that people wearing glasses should be locked up, that is not freedom or democracy,” he said.
[ACT MP] Mr Garrett is a hardliner who this week told the Herald that if three strikes was found to breach fundamental human rights, the solution was to change the Bill of Rights.
So, by Hide’s own definition the Gang Insignia Bill is against the principles of freedom and democracy, and Hide is now also opposed to the principles of freedom and democracy because he has voted for that law*.
Basically ACT is saying “We will sacrifice our principles and trample on freedom in order to keep our election promise of a three-strikes law. If that three-strikes law breaches the current definition of fundamental human rights we will simply change the definition of fundamental human rights”.
This illustrates the great danger that lies in the concept of “human rights” and in legislation that defines it: the definition of “human rights” can and does change without warning. As I said in my earlier post, there is no such thing as “human rights”, there are only personal and property rights. Only when personal and property rights are defined according to the non-aggression axiom are we safe from the depredations of politicians.
Laws such as the Bill of Rights are simply a means of restricting our rights to those which are defined in the legislation. If we were truly free there would be no need for such legislation, but instead we only have those rights which the state kindly allows us to have this week.
I really did expect better from the ACT Party, who should stop trampling on freedom and instead make a stand for it.
“Such moves are wrongly-focussed, token-ist and entirely predictable – hard-line policies to deal with gangs are reeled out by different Parties in the run up to every election,” Mrs Roy said.
“Clearly none of these ‘flash in a pan’ policies have worked – because they focus more on addressing the mayhem that individual gang members cause, rather than on initiatives that will hit gangs hardest and make it harder for them to operate.
“Legislation outlawing gangs and their insignia is just more law – we don’t need more laws, we need to enforce the ones we already have and give police the power to tackle lawlessness where and when it happens.
“This is political spin at its worst. Enforcing the laws and by-laws we already have, and following the money rather than the mayhem – a view reinforced by South Australia Premier Mike Rann in Auckland yesterday – is the real answer to dealing with gangs in New Zealand,” Mrs Roy said.