“We, New Zealand, we were not a target because we are a safe harbor for those who hate. We were not chosen for this act of violence because we condone racism.”
Fayetteville, AR – -(AmmoLand.com)- The terrorist attack on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, killing forty-nine and wounding many others, illustrates once again as if we needed a new example, of the horrors that extremist hatred can perpetrate.
The murderer, who will only be referred to in this article with terms of disparagement and not by name, has been captured by police officers who forced him off the road and dragged him from his vehicle at gunpoint—and several others have been detained as suspects.
This attack brings to New Zealand a reality that we in American have been experiencing, namely the rise of terror from the far right and far left, an ideology that seeks to wall off “white culture” from contact with people perceived as the Other.
In a manifesto to explain what he was about to do, he quotes the white supremacist slogan called the Fourteen Words, “We must secure an existence for our people and a future for white children,” a Freudian slip that reveals the desperate fear that he and his ideological fellows feel. This rallying cry is an expression of weakness, a belief that “whiteness” is something so fragile that the slightest mixing will shatter it.
What the coward fails to acknowledge or perhaps even to realize is the fact that his whining about being a European, as if ancestry were an achievement to be proud of, undermines his argument. He is an Australian who carried out his crimes in New Zealand, two nations that I am unable to find on a map of Europe.
To contrast the vile beliefs of the terrorist, I offer two passages from the press conference given by New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern:
“Christchurch was the home of these victims. For many, this may not have been the place they were born. In fact, for many, New Zealand was their choice, the place they actively came to and committed themselves to, the place they were raising their families, where they were part of communities they loved and who loved them. It was a place that many came to for its safety, a place where they were free to practice their culture and religion.”
She went on to say,
“We, New Zealand, we were not a target because we are a safe harbor for those who hate. We were not chosen for this act of violence because we condone racism, because we’re an enclave for extremism. We were chosen for the very facts that we are none of these things, because we represent diversity, kindness, compassion, a home for those who share our values, refuge for those who need it. And those values, I can assure you, will not and cannot be shaken by this attack.”
As a white American whose ancestors are mostly Danes and Celts, or so my mother told me and my skin confirms on a sunny day, I state unequivocally that PM Ardern speaks for me. The purpose of my articles here and a consistent message in a lot of my writing is to defend human rights, rights that every one on this planet possesses, regardless of race, religion, and country of birth. The people who were killed were not the invaders. The invader was the sniveling loser who felt so afraid, as a white man on land that was taken from the Māori natives, that he regarded himself as entitled to murder people who were doing nothing wrong.
It is the duty of all good people to repudiate his evil.
About Greg Camp
Greg Camp has taught English composition and literature since 1998 and is the author of six books, including a western, The Willing Spirit, and Each One, Teach One, with Ranjit Singh on gun politics in America. His books can be found on Amazon. He tweets @gregcampnc.