Letters : It cuts both ways

It cuts both ways

How ironic that a day aimed at preventing violence to women, White Ribbon Day, is to be celebrated with violence to animals.

I'm referring to the advertised sausage sizzle. Apart from being subjected to a violent and terrifying death, the pigs transformed into sausages would have been subjected to agonising mutilations

If it's wrong to be violent to women, how can it be right to be violent to other sentient beings who have the same capacity for suffering as us and are even more defenceless and vulnerable?

Given that we have no requirement for flesh in our diet, the fact that these animals were killed for food in no way justifies this violence.



Take a stand

The 2012 White Ribbon campaign is focusing attention on non-physical violence - a category of violence that uses emotional or verbal behaviour to control someone through fear.

This form of abuse is often underestimated and is not recognised by many people because it can be subtle and hidden. Survivors say psychological abuse attacks their spirit and self-esteem, and the effects can last the longest.

Perpetrators may threaten victims, children, possessions and animals. This violence can affect a person's emotions and personality and may lead to poor health. Victims of emotional abuse can feel like they are losing control of their minds and may always feel in a state of tension.

Cyber-bullying is a form of non-physical violence. Highlighting cyber-bullying as a form of violence will help both men and women recognise that this form of non-physical violence is not OK. No violence is tolerable, and the actions of Constable Penni Eggleton in recognising that cyber-bullying is a form of non-physical violence may have saved a young women's life.

Two years ago, Constable Eggleton helped a Wellington woman in her early 20s who was receiving hundreds of threatening text messages from an ex-boyfriend - a man with a history of violent behaviour towards women.

Highlighting cyber-bullying as a form of violence will help both men and women recognise that this form of non-physical violence is not OK. Like Constable Eggleton, we all have a role to play in reducing violence, whether by opting for a career in the police or as someone who can influence your own friends and workmates.

That's why the White Ribbon Campaign is asking all New Zealanders to take the White Ribbon Pledge "to never commit, condone or remain silent about men's violence towards women".

Wear a White Ribbon in support of the pledge, or take the pledge at whiteribbon.org.nz and show your support online.



White Ribbon campaign

Cancel this award I was sent an email from Steve Dries, the South Canterbury tennis coach.

It is disappointing that the Marlborough Tennis Club has won the gold membership award by being less than honest over previous years in not affiliating its juniors. All of a sudden there has been a massive increase in membership, which should have rung alarm bells with Tennis NZ, which gave the award.

I coach in the Piako area, where the Te Aroha club spent a lot of time, energy and resources to get a genuine increase in membership. It should have been considered, as it has been completely open about its membership.

I just hope for the sake of tennis in New Zealand that our national body, Tennis NZ, cancels the award and gives it to a club more deserving.



How can this be?

I read with interest the story in the Saturday Express, "Set, match" [November 17]. Having been a committee member and having run the primary competition for four seasons, I have three comments.

The awards dinner and announcements are not until December 20, so how can the Marlborough Tennis Club make the claim in the paper when we have not had the dinner, nor the decision?

The figures would appear to be bogus. What the club and association have done is to affiliate the primary players, having doubled the team fee and offering the kids the option of joining a club to become a legitimate member. Mandatory under their constitution.

What does this mean? It means that in all years prior to the 2011 season, the club never affiliated the primary kids to clubs, and therefore did not pay the required fees through to the national body.

Result: the change of policy has artificially inflated the numbers well over a 50 per cent increase, when the actual change is actually well under 20 per cent.

The club numbers have fallen from 300-plus to 148 in the past three or four years. The best year was 2003, when there were 79 teams in the total primary and secondary competition. The playing numbers apart from primary have dropped dramatically.

A protest has been formally made to Tennis NZ about this decision in respect to all the other clubs in the country.



Underpass work

I read that the underpass in Seddon was constructed by HEB in one week ["Rebuilt underpass back in use," Express, November 5].

Well, let me tell you, I work for Crafar Crouch Construction in Blenheim, and we built that in six weeks with about 16 of our men - with Norm Crafar working alongside us most of the time.

I personally made the handrails and fitted them on site, and all the time I was there I never saw an HEB man drive a single peg.

I don't know where you get some of your information sometimes, but I read your misinformed stories many times in the paper, and I think it's time you did more homework and got things right.



A check with the Marlborough District Council has clarified the situation. HEB organised the work as part of its maintenance contract with Marlborough Roads. Crafar Crouch was subcontracted to do the work, and T C Nicholls did the sealing. - Editor

The Marlborough Express