Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Against Dominion Day

Writing in the Dominion-Post, former National Party spindoctor Richard Long advocates replacing the "ever-divisive Waitangi Day" with Dominion Day. This isn't much of a surprise from one of the architects of the Orewa speech and national's racially divisive 2005 election campaign. But his arguments, however, are more about how bad Waitangi Day is, rather than any real advocacy for the merits of Dominion Day. And this isn't really surprising, because as Colin James points out, there's really nothing to celebrate there. The shift to a dominion was "an unremarkable marker en route from colony to legally independent state", which made no real difference to a country already practically autonomous in its day-to-day affairs. In its place, he suggests November 25th, the anniversary of the passage of the Statute of Westminster. But while that matters more from a legal point of view, it matters even less to ordinary people. Which leaves us with only one solution for a new national day: declare a republic, and celebrate its birth!

(Hat tip: Holden Republic)