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30 December 2013


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Ballooning sentimentality and exaggerated and unnecessary pathos don't help either.

PNGians who are educated at the opportunity cost and at the expense of other citizens and the public purse have a responsibility to the public and the community to be properly educated, balanced and logical.

Above all they don't acquire a right to browbeat the public with spiritual mumbo jumbo or what they conceive as intellectualism - a pious form of self deception.

We demand better from those posing and posturing in public forums clutching their two bit pieces of papers, without understanding the subject matter at hand in the first place.

History teaches us of spiritual and intellectual blindness that have driven kings to war, knights to slaughter and the innocent and weak to hang or burn. Today it is PNG's moment of spiritual and intellectual blindness.

Unfortunately we have too many so called doktas who don't understand the fact that they don't understand standing over the country in public forums, publicly owned companies, government departments etc. What a curse in disguise!

The issue here is simple, no matter how much people try to convince us, or write in eloquent and intellectual terms defending their stance. The House of Parliament is not a church, or place of worship. It is an icon of democracy: a gathering place where our elected leaders gather to discuss, debate and make decisions by majority rule. Now the carvings were removed without debate or discussion and there was no referendum, or agreement by the majority of our elected leaders. It was a one-man decision by a person who saw fit to impose upon parliament and the nation his own religious beliefs and ideology, with the advice of some Bible-pushing fundamentalist preacher from overseas hell-bent on destroying our culture and identity. No matter how much they and their supporters try to justify it, the issue here is that it is WRONG in the first place. The means does not justify the end and Two wrongs don’t make a right.

All these issues (drug supplies, SABL etc) deserve the same degree of attention. The difference between those issues and the removal of carvings is the degree of contention between people for and against.
Most people agree that awarding of dubious contracts for pharmaceutical services was wrong. However the removal of carvings was an issue that divided most people and that is why it received the attention it did from Post Courier and from the public.
When it was decided to decorate parliament when it was first built if there was this degree of opposition to how it was done then there should have been a referendum etc to resolve the issue. It seems a committee oversaw this which did not receive much opposition then.
When however an issue has the potential to polarize society the issue should be widely debated and and resolved in a democratic manner.
Try to think a little independently and logically.

What about all those 'Christian terrorists' Frank? PNG seems to abound with them.

Can someone tell us if there was any public forum or referendum on which type of carvings should have been placed there in parliament in the first place?

Regarding cultural terrorism, by the same token could Paraka Lawyers be also called a financial terrorist? How about the Health Minister or Cabinet or for that matter the PM and Cabinet for awarding a suspicious medicines supply contract to a questionable company, can we also call them health or medical terrorists?

If so then they also deserve to get front page Post-Courier news titled as terrorists.

I hope you are not studying Logic as part of a university course, Frank - KJ

Dr Kuwimb - Condemn all the thieving rort's being perpetrated. The late Yauwe Wauwe Moses of Chuave would have agreed.

Corney, I am sorry if you think my comments are a professional insult. However I stand by those.

The simple issue is whether or not the masks and carvings have demonic significance or not. It is the issue that due to sensitivity of the issue there needed to be broader discussion before a decision was taken.In many countries even though leaders are elected by a majority a referendum is necessary for certain issues.

It is an issue where we are unlikely to agree on anything hence this is my last take on this.

All I can say is if a lawyer throws up all kind of semantic language to obscure what is clearly a violation of due democratic process, I do not have to swallow it gracefully.

For those who are arguing about this well written article. Let me ask you a question - where did you originate from? How did this universe come into existence. Who keeps and sustains life?

My friend, if you read history it all points back to God. So it is right to say let (not only our country) countries of the world have some allegience to the one who gave it.

Not exactly. It's not merely a projection of white-missionaries.

It's a proclamation and tested proof of a mad-man from Galilee's message of truth and liberation. That King of the universe has been proclaimed the King and God of Papua New Guinea

Why do you think, many white men missionaries preached the same message irrespective of where they came from?

...regardless of race, creed or religion , whose definition is this? I have a serious problem agreeing to what the UN espouses.

The UN, UNESCO etc have glaring double-standards in matters of freedom for one of our Melanesian brothers.

Isn’t the bible symbolic of the Christian faith?

What about those who believe in the Koran?

"Christian lawyer..". Now that part of the title should be a nominee for a "Misnomer of the Year Awards"!

He is just a lawyer who happens to be a person who is practising a religion the way he perceives it.

What happened to "..regardless of race, creed or religion.."? This is a discriminatory title.

What he does in the bedroom, on the dinner table, the kitchen counters, the floor and, most tellingly, in the pews of his church are irrelevant to what he is highly schooled (not educated) to become!

Corney my friend - I don't really want to get into a dispute. But can't you see that the anti-carvings movement is merely a projection of the white missionaries anti-PNG culture push from three generations ago? It is western-inspired missionary zealoutry. It is colonialism at its worst.

And by no means were all the missionaries were at fault - the Catholics were fairly enlightened, it was the London Missionary Society and the evangelical Lutherans who put the boot into local culture.

Bubu told me the Lutherans wouldn't let him come to church unless he reduced his wives to one. What happened to the rest of the poor buggers?

Paulus, Your response is clearly a professional insult.

Reading to understand is different from reading to respond .

I'd suggest you re-read it and respond later when you can salvage some free time.

Those totem poles and carvings are symbols of paganism and animistic worship – that’s as clear as day is from night.

These symbols, especially in the parliament have served their purpose in the last 29 years.

We don't need them any more as our guide, inspiration or whatever their purposes maybe. The light of Word of God is the way forward for the country in the next 40 years and beyond.

I think Sir Bilious-Cum-Quietly has a future.

On the Tapioc dance "this is patently obscene! Sir Peter Scratchley, you must ban it at once!"

And as for Manus, "send the Ghanis there immediately! And cut off the island from all outside contact! Activate the Geefouress!"

And on tainim lek and kukim nus - "Send an expedition there immediately! This evil influence must be stopped. I suggest these Leahy's. They seem to have a grasp on how to preserve Christian culture! Shoot the heathen buggers!"

Perhaps the author's time and effort would be better spent proselytizing among his colleagues in the legal fraternity who are so often found in bed with corrupt government officials and MPs.

They prostitute their profession to the highest bidder using the national coffers.

What about instead doing pro bono work helping to get corrupt public servants indicted? Wouldn't' that be a Christian act?

This self righteous propaganda article is poorly constructed.

Corney - I was merely quoting a definition of cultural terrorism from The Urban Dictionary. It's cheap and cheerful, but probably not the ultimate authority.

There are many better sources around dealing with culture in general. In fact whole Uni courses are dedicated to defining and exploring culture.

Here's the Oxford English Dictionary.

And here's Webster -

It derives from growth - eg. agriculture. It's originally middle-English/French, derived from Latin.

(Sorry to get all academic.)

A couple of more examples of cultural terrorism closer to home. The English outlawed Irish dancing, but the Irish being clever and cheeky developed the style of dancing with your arms at your sides as per Riverdance. "That's not really dancing is it Sir Bilious-Cum-Quietly".

And then they banned Scottish tartans and clan names after the '45 rebellion (that's 1745 by the way). And one of my Grandma's ancestors was a bloke called Rob Roy. So I wear my McGregor with pride.

What a load of crap from somebody with a PhD in law. In typical lawyer language he tries to divert our attention from the real issues at hand.

He of all people should know that the basic issue is that it is unconstitutional to impose one religious sect’s viewpoint on other citizens including the parliament that belongs to all Papua New Guineans, be they Christians of all denominations or non Christians.

If the speaker was concerned the correct approach would have been to firstly debate it in parliament and then as Francis Nii pointed out, carry out a referendum if necessary after thorough debate.

If there was universal agreement to have a change then the correct thing to have done would be to move the carvings to the national museum or some other alternative place.

The actions of the speaker suggests arrogance and narrow-mindedness and seems to my uneducated mind (legally speaking) in contravention of the constitution as well as a violation of human rights of all Papua New Guineans.

I am sorry I haven’t read the whole article put up by this lawyer as it really isn’t worth reading. It's total hogwash dressed up as intellectual argument.

Never trust a lawyer quoting definitions.

Yes, the Speaker is a 'cultural terrorist'.

You, sir, are an idiot.

Your source of the two definitions on culture please?

Frank - facetious; claptrap; waffling, with much baloney.

'Cultural terrorism' is a long-used term in archaeology, history and anthropology. It does not imply that the perpetrators are terrorists in the terms of the 9/11 attacks, but refers to the deliberate destruction of cultural property or artefacts in an effort to impose one world view on a people.

It is often done in the name of God - such as the Taleban destruction of the ancient Buddhist statues in Afghanistan, the bonfire of the vanities by Savonorola's followers in fifteenth century Florence, the English puritan's destruction of stained glass, statues and religious relics in Cathedrals in the wake of Cromwell's revolution, and even perhaps the attempted bulldozing of ancient houses in Paddington, Sydney in the 1970's (albeit done in the worship of Mammon.)

""The real God is only Allah, and all other false gods should be removed." This statement from the one-eyed cleric Mullah Omar sent a chill through the international community following an edict issued by Afghanistan's fundamentalist Taliban regime announcing that all pre-Islamic statues in the country were to be destroyed. That edict, and the resulting destruction, has been universally condemned as "cultural terrorism."

Looks like some Christians are trying to get their own back in an effort to copy the vandalism of the Taleban - all in the name of God of course, as if that makes it all-right.

Here's another definition -

"1. To make outlandish statements or actions simply for the purpose of seeing it's psychological effect on people and society.

2.Fomenting unwarranted division of one part of society against another part of the same society."

Urban dictionary.

Seems to me that the Post Courier is fully justified in using the term 'cultural terrorist' against the Speaker and his cabal.

There you have it. Brilliance!

I have indicated to the writer about the actual date the King James version of the Bible translation took place.

The writer was travelling so could not get a chance to edit that.

I can forward the email I sent to him.

King James Version - 1611 not 1901. The writer has a poor grasp of History.

He is making poorly based assumptions. He should have done more research to find out what the original carvers were really trying to represent in their carvings.

I think he has a poor understanding of the role of a Speaker in a modern Parliament. He should try to understand that it is wise to keep the State separate from the Church.

A person's religion is a personal thing. The Christians of PNG must learn that they cannot just turn all the members of parliament into Christians and they cannot turn PNG into a Christian country.

If they get elected to parliament they can try to bring in laws that show Christian love and concern for all people.

From my understanding I feel this does not appear to be happening at the moment.

The fallacious notion that "culture" has been destroyed by the Hon. Speaker is being brilliantly put into perspective by Dr. John Kuwimb's masterpiece. Culture is a lot more than what many have been superficially led to believe.

Well done, Dr. Kuwimb.


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