Tariana Turia,Maori Party co-leader is condemned for her inane comments that the Mongrel Mob and Black Power gangs were not criminal. How bloody stupid! Gangs are there for one reason only - for criminal purposes and when somebody joins a gang they become criminals by association. They can join a youth club if they want to feel wanted!
Turia is always making a fool of herself because of her continual 'foot in mouth' comments. She has now been branded as an apologist for the gangs. Her comments were made after the fatal drive-by shooting in Wanganui which resulted in the death of a young child in her family home. The war of words since has brought strong rebukes across the political divide.
Police Association president Greg O'Connor furiously criticised her when she compared gangs with the police; although criminologist Greg Newbold said not everybody joining a gang embarked on a criminal career. Really? Most gang prospects have to prove themselves to earn their gang patches. What by helping old ladies across the street? Don't be bloody naive and stupid.
I support the Prime Minister Helen Clark's comments that while Mrs Turia was trying to defuse the situation, her comments were way out of line.I quote the PM." The gangs are criminal organisations. That's what distinguishes them from other, normal,legal organisations. Gangs cause a tremendous amount of misery in the community and I don't think its appropriate for anybody to be making excuses for them." Here, here!
She also said that it was an appalling analogy to compare gangs with police. Mr O'connor also said it was totally unacceptable, silly and irresponsible for somebody purporting to represent the interests of Maori, to ignore the fact that the biggest victims of Maori gangs are other Maori.
Maori Affairs Minister,Parekura Horomia said gangs practised criminal activity and must be "exited' from Maori culture. National MP, Chester Borrows, who is planning a bill to ban gang patches in Wanganui City, also condemned Mrs Turia's inane comments.