NZ Post Supported Child Porn

When New Zealand Post knowingly supported the award of pornographic material into New Zealand Schools they crossed a line. They claim they have no power over the choice of the Children’s Book Awards – even though it carries their name as the primary sponsor – NZ Post Children’s Book Awards.  I can understand that under normal circumstances they do not want be micromanaging the choice of books made by the panel of judges, however, they obviously realized that this book was not normal circumstances when they insisted that it carried a warning label for explicit material.

Could the nervous reaction of NZ Post have had something to do with their own regulations?

Articles prohibited under the Postal Services Act, 1998:
Any item that is illegal, dangerous, or destructive substance or fluid (including an item with a Dangerous Goods Classification).
Any matter or thing capable, as packed, of causing injury to any person or damage to any article.
Any noxious substance or thing, or any dead animal.
Any indecent article or representation of any kind

It seems a little odd that indecent articles are not allowed to be shipped through the postal service, and yet the postal service is sponsoring them into the libraries of school children.

While one Government agency is promoting porn to school children, other Government agencies are trying to stamp out the spread of porn in New Zealand and around the world.

Justice Minister Judith Collins announced the introduction of a bill to increase the penalties for the production, distribution and possession of child pornography.  (source)

Our Government is being given high praise around the world for the work it is doing with helping prosecute those involved in child porn.

The head of Interpol’s of crimes against children unit, Mick Moran, recently described the Department of Internal Affairs as a world leader against this type of crime and far ahead of a lot of bigger countries in terms of how it operated. (source)

Some teachers are looking forward to introducing the pornographic material found in the NZ Post Children’s Book Award winner to their classrooms. They will be allowed to do this because it has been endorsed for literary merit. While another teacher is losing his job for accidentally showing a porn clip to his classroom when it got onto his laptop while he was watching porn at home. Double standards are rife when it comes to what is pornography and what is acceptable.

Despite the fact child pornography causes such misery, New Zealand courts have shown an inexplicable reluctance to take those who indulge in it out of circulation…
“From the offenders’ point of view, when they get into these communities, they are always talking with like-minded people and in some ways, they will try to validate their behaviour amongst each other. These people need help, and very specialised help.” (source)

Equally as common place are the arguments to validate the introduction of porn to minors. From the New Zealand Posts Children’s Book Awards Facebook page we see such arguments as

Fraser Newman Young people are exposed to these things all the time. Better to show the bad side of them so as to learn from books, than to learn from life experience.

Whatever happened to the duty of parents to protect their kids from harm? Is it better to expose an entire generation of youth to perversion because a handful may find themselves experiencing illegal and obscene things? Surely better to work on preventing any children experiencing this than accepting it as normal and forcing it upon them all?

Fifi Colston by winning the award, there is no compulsion for any school to have it as curriculum or even in their library. That is the schools choice- take it up with the school. The video is relevant to this argument. The book was awarded on it’s literary merit. The judges have read the book. Have you read the book? Many people are slamming it as rubbish and pornography without reading anymore than a few excerpts cobbled together for sensationalism. If your kids highschool- and this is not a book that would appear in a primary or intermediate school library, choose to have it, then that is your conversation with the school. There is a general hysteria that young children or high school students will be forced to read this book as a matter of course. This is not the case. I really encourage people to read the book. And as an NZ writer and former judge, I take exception to being branded generally as a promoter of paedophilia, pornography, incest, drug taking and everything else people here are dredging up. Into the River is a distinctly New Zealand voice. Identifying with it doesn’t mean following the same path as the characters.

Fifi Colston The comment about the dog was for Rebeka and Dean in the main, and anyone else who has said that if I/we support the book in any way, we am promoting all kinds of pornography. Dean suggested that next year we will be encouraged to show this in picture books. As a writer and illustrator who has worked hard at my craft in a small industry, I am not thrilled about the inference that anyone who feels that Into The River is a well written, throught (sic) provoking novel that opens up a path for discussion about the issues is a latent sex offender and/or morally corrupt. I’d like to say this is Victorian thinking, but sexual and physical abuse of children was quite the norm back then, so I hope we have moved on. Hiding issues breeds them under a cloak of silence

My argument  was in response to those who suggested that is far better to be exposed to these perverted themes through literature that perhaps next year they would be awarding the best CHILDREN’S LITERATURE award to a book on bestiality, then on child sex, and all other manner of perversions because it is better they should learn about them in books than in real life.  Of course MY logic was flawed, that of course they wouldn’t, they have set the boundary at teachers having graphic sex with children.  I also suggested that perhaps next year the winner of the picture book category might feed off this years literary winner and put the graphically described content into pictures – or that perhaps Playboy might be a strong contender to take out the award.  Again, I am over-reacting because that would never happen because… well, that would never happen (kind of logic).

Fifi Colston I think I have time slipped and ended up on a forum in 1950’s America. I am quite astounded by what I am reading here in 2013. However I AM reading Into The River and it is a profound YA book- not erotica, porn or a’how to’ book on self harm or drug taking.

Fifi doesn’t think any of the content contained in this book is pornographic (I remind you, she is a former judge of NZ Children’s Literature Awards). I will not post excerpts on my page, just as the awards own Facebook page will not allow quotes to be posted, but if you really want to read the kind of literature that she finds so profound you can click this R18 link. Or you can read a review of the NZ Post Sponsored Porn from the Omaru Mail where they have to say “The book uses expletives including the c-word and depicts drug use and sex scenes, including one where a baby mimics the sounds of intercourse.

New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards Calling the author filthy is unacceptable and name calling. This is a novel we’re discussing not a person (the author) that many of us don’t know personally. I know many people feel passionately about the issues here but name calling won’t be tolerated. (Emma)

Name calling won’t be tolerated unless it is from those who support the book (incidentally the comment above wasn’t directed at me, unlike the one below).

Fifi Colston I got it! Dean, you are an internet troll. My son explained how that works. Well played, game over. Fun whilst it lasted, and I have to say you really had me going when you suggested illustrated porn and bestiality could be shortlisted. How do you think of such things? LOL Dean. You are one funny troll!

And that comment was from a former judge of literature awards would you believe?

There are many more comments about people who object to the award being from the dark ages, wielding pitchforks, wanting to ban literature from a generation because we are prudes or ignorant. The facts are that the majority of objectors could care less what garbage the author self publishes – just as I have not focused on the book itself here. Dawe already has a similar book in publication that has languished in obscurity. What we object to is the awarding of this kind of material (supposedly) esteemed literary recognition, giving it credibility, exposure, and right of entry into schools. Remember this is literature whose target audience is 13 to 15 year-old children.

If this is the best New Zealand has to offer our children then we are in serious trouble. NZ Post you need to take a proactive role in defending our children from the grooming of sexual predators through literature that you sponsor. It is encouraging to see that you are reconsidering your original cop-out stance:

New Zealand Post has sponsored this event for 17 years, and to our knowledge this is the first time an incident of this nature has arisen.

As a sponsor, we do not decide which books are shortlisted or awarded – those decisions are the responsibility of the judges selected by the Governance Group administered by Booksellers New Zealand.

We first became aware of the explicit nature of “Into the River” a week before the awards were announced – at which point we insisted that a label reading “Parental Advisory: Explicit Content” be prominently affixed to all copies at the point of sale and in libraries, and that the explicit nature of this content be highlighted in the media statement announcing the awards. Booksellers New Zealand agreed to meet these requirements.

We have also relayed to Booksellers New Zealand our concerns that the explicit nature of this book may tend to undermine the public goodwill which traditionally accompanies the Children’s Book of the Year Awards, and correspondence we have subsequently received from the public reinforces the validity of that concern.

Our discussions with the event organisers are ongoing.

To the following stance:
Brian Roche has considered the issues you and others have raised, and has asked me to convey the following comments:

New Zealand Post’s role in the Children’s Book Awards is solely as a sponsor, alongside Creative New Zealand.  Booksellers New Zealand (an organisation which is wholly independent of New Zealand Post) administers and manages the judging process. The sponsors have no role in selecting the finalists or the awardees – and do not have any power to veto or disqualify the decisions reached by the independent judges.  

For our part, we have expressed our strong concerns with Booksellers New Zealand over the potential for the judges’ decision to undermine the enormous public goodwill which has traditionally accompanied these Awards – and to distract from its core aim which is to celebrate writing which inspires a love of reading in our nation’s children.  

We acknowledge that there are a number of lessons arising from the decision of the judges and to that end New Zealand Post is currently in discussions with Booksellers New Zealand.  It would be inappropriate to make any further comment before that process is completed.


However, our youth need a stronger voice of rational thinking than that. The sponsors have every power to pull their funding from independent judges that have completely lost touch with what CHILDREN LITERATURE is and should be.

NZ Post Endorses Child Porn

I couldn’t believe it myself – surely NZ Post would not want to be associated with child porn?  New Zealand Post supports porn

Apparently so.

Of course I should add that they did make a couple of stipulations before allowing their name to be connected to child porn.  In their own words:

We first became aware of the explicit nature of “Into the River” a week before the awards were announced – at which point we insisted that a label reading “Parental Advisory: Explicit Content” be prominently affixed to all copies at the point of sale and in libraries, and that the explicit nature of this content be highlighted in the media statement announcing the awards. Booksellers New Zealand agreed to meet these requirements.

So if you want sponsorship by NZ Post for promoting child porn all you have to do is make sure it is correctly labeled.  Because obviously a book in a children’s library labeled R18 is not going to draw attention from younger readers!

I am really looking forward to seeing NZ Post sponsoring the Boobs On Bikes parades around the country.  No doubt this will be followed up by Teens On Poles. In fact why stop at porn industry domination, NZ Post might as well dominate the drug industry as they have the perfect supply chain in place.

Perhaps they were just duped by the official sounding name of the organization that they decided to back. After all the New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards sounds harmless enough.  It also carries the names of famous NZ children’s book authors such Magaret Mahy. Perhaps they didn’t realize the depth of depravity that exists in the NZ children’s publishing scene.

You certainly wouldn’t expect such depravity if all you did was glance at the awards Facebook page. No sir, they don’t even allow excerpts of their children’s porn to be posted on the page because it might offend some of their more sensitive supporters. I am not sure who is going to be offended, after all these books are  recommended reading for children. Perhaps pre-school children might be browsing the page?

I have been informed that it is better for children to be reading about pornographic experiences, drug use, and other debortury than experiencing it in the “real world,” by supporters of the book awards.  I guess this means that future winners of the NZ Post Childrens Book Awards will delve into all manner of depravity because they think they are entitled to expose children to this in print so they don’t have to experience it in the flesh.

I am sure NZ Post will be only too happy to accommodate correctly labeled books on child bestiality,  sex with infants, and every other disgusting thing imaginable. In their own words “New Zealand Post is committed to helping children learn and explore.”