Why I want to ban old, white men

20:36, Feb 15 2013

There is a type of person I would like to ban - not just from airlines, but also our airwaves and all other media. Middle-aged white guys. There, I've said it.

I will no longer stand by while the rights and freedoms of real New Zealanders are denigrated by this sorry pack of troglodytes from Blokeistan who say stupid things.

So listen up. If you are a male, aged between about 40 and 65, and you're an idiot, or you look like an idiot, or you come from a place of idiots, then you need to shut up.

I'm not saying anything that other people aren't thinking. We all know that, statistically, all the stupid stuff that has ever been said, has been said by middle-aged white men. And OK, Hekia Parata. But mostly middle-aged white men. Or "MAWMs".

And that's not racist. Being middle-aged and a man isn't a race. Don't play the race card on me. White isn't a race, either. It's a description. You can see it just by looking.

Sure, it may not have always been this way. Perhaps there have been moments in history when people other than MAWMs said stupid things. Maybe old men talked rubbish once. Possibly old women, too, what with their wives' tales and so forth.


But it's a different world now. We've moved on. I can't speculate on whether I would have gagged old men in the Middle Ages or muzzled younger ladies in the 1960s, for example, for being all feminist and shouty. I won't comment on a hypothetical situation. But I can tell you that in the world we live in now, it is middle-aged white men who are talking crap.

I don't need to list all their atrocities. But here's a starter: Gerry Brownlee on Finland, Gareth Morgan on cats, John Key on gay shirts, Donald Trump on Obama, Alasdair Thompson on menstruation, Andy Haden on rugby and rape . . . We all know where the buck stops when it comes to saying dumb stuff. And it's not your nana.

Though, on reflection, perhaps I should be clearer. I'm not saying all middle-aged white men say stupid things. But I am saying that, of the people who say stupid things, all of them are men who are middle-aged and white.

So maybe I shouldn't have been talking about a blanket ban on middle-aged white men talking. Maybe I should have called for "targeted profiling" of MAWMs to work out which ones might be more likely to say bombastic and explosive things.

Also, now I think about it, it's possible what I said at the beginning wasn't balanced. In the sense that I may have offended middle-aged white men and, to be properly fair, I should have offended some other people, too. Though in my defence, I did take a sideways crack at Hekia Parata. So that should even it up.

I admit to having some regrets about the language I've used. To be honest, they're not really my regrets, they were given to me by my boss to pass on to you. We had a wide-ranging discussion about what I wrote. I think you can imagine. He's pretty well-known for his width and range. The upshot is that, apparently, I am sorry if anyone is upset. Though I also think there are some people who get upset too easily. Like I said, I'm just saying what everyone like me is thinking.

The Press