I've nothing against Maori keeping their culture and language alive but to force it on my child in school is hypocritical. You Maori bleat about forced assimilation yet you want to force your language on our kids. If my son wishes to learn about Maori culture and te Reo it should be his choice frankly I'd rather he excelled at real world education that will help him in his real life.
Yeah, I hear that a lot. The problem I have with this argument is the assumption that Te Reo doesnít have adaptive capabilities when this is actually a characteristic of every human language. As a medium of communication, Te Reo doesnít prevent someone from expressing even complicated ideas or abstract thought.
One of the problems faced by Te Reo is the Crowns vested interest in eliminating Te Reo from mainstream use, from the institutions of power, as a language of authority, and from our schools because they wanted Maori to disappear.
The disinvestment in Te Reo over successive generations has almost become a self fulfilling prophecy for those who want to claim theyíd rather see their kids excel elsewhere, as if Te Reo would somehow dumb them down.
Iíve learned in my travels overseas that knowing more than one language isnít an impediment to learning. Instead, attitudes like yours create a Ďthemí and Ďusí situation beginning at an early age that remains in later life in other social situations (e.g. college, work, clubs, public domains etc) and actually perpetuates and compounds the problem.
You may think itís hypocritical, but at the end of the day I bet youíre more than happy to keep this cultural exchange a one way street. I should learn yours; you have the choice not to learn anything about mine. Your language and culture is normal; mine is Ďotherí. Yours is the in-group, mine is the out-group.
In other words, letís keep the system of white privilege and Pakeha domination in place.
Thatís the real issue here. Itís not just this or that issue, or even just one issue. All of these ideas overlap and intersect. The real reason Pakeha agitate against Te Reo is because they are vested in maintaining Pakeha dominance in NZ society.
A strong cultural awareness among Pakeha in the form of language and Maori identity ultimately forces them to confront their colonial past, and this is something few Pakeha are willing to do honestly.