A father took his three children aged nine, seven and five to visit their mother in hospital. He didn’t have to be there as he and the mother were no longer together. That act of caring brought him an assault charge.
His name is Michael Laws, former Wanganui Mayor. His crime? He smacked one of his children in front of a nurse, who then complained to the police.
“Laws accused over child assault” blares the shrill headline from NZ Yahoo news.
Now this father stands accused, and the police are having to investigate a child assault complaint, when their time could be better spent elsewhere. There are heaps of burglaries to investigate from NZ’s P epidemic.
I have been in that same hospital with my child, where I allowed them to jab her with a needle – and it made her cry. What I did was preventative act of caring, necessary for me to do as a parent. How come jabbing my daughter with a needle so she wouldn’t catch whooping cough or diptheria is not termed an assault, when giving a quick smack to a child has stepped over the line is!
It’s sad that NZ has been turned into a small-minded nanny state where parents are under threat.
This man was a well known person in Wanganui and a good father. Where was the nurse’s common sense? He’s a Dad left bringing up his children on his own in a land of missing fathers and he didn’t deserve this nonsense. He was visiting his estranged partner and didn’t even have to be there. His actions were those of a caring parent, not a bad one!
Why did Yahoo news make that nefarious accusation into a headline? You have to get to the second paragraph before you realise what he is guilty of – a smack! What kind of Orwellian newspeak are they peddling? I don’t want my opinion shaped, or have to read to paragraph two to get at the truth.
How did we come to this in NZ? This putrid piece of PC excrement, disguised as a law, was passed in 2007 to criminalise parents who smack? It came in under the government of Helen Clark, after a UN publication on violence against children. Helen Clark has been amply rewarded – she is now third in power at the UN.
It was brought in despite public petitions and protests, and without a referendum. It was finally put to public referendum under John Key’s government in 2009, where it was asked “Should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence in New Zealand?” A whopping 87.4% of NZ answered ‘no’. Nothing happened. Why not, and why haven’t we been listened to?
John Key’s assurances are in direct conflict with what groups like Barnados, the Children’s Commissioner and Plunket are telling parents, and the way the anti-smacking law is being enforced by the police, CYF and the Family Court. And in September 2010 in Parliament, all political parties, except for ACT, sent a clear message that a light smack is not ok when they rejected the very amendment that National MP’s had been vigorously lobbying for when in opposition! Law-abiding parents raising great kids are now confused.
Now, in 2020
Things have got a lot worse for parents since this UN-mandated law was enacted. We’ve got big government in a small country and this is what it looks like. If you’re a parent under stress, be careful reaching out to Plunket. They’re no longer to be trusted and will get the state involved.
This website has some good information for parents, with links to lawyers and legal advice: https://protectgoodparents.org.nz