Bob McCoskrie, the national director of Family First NZ, wrote in to support my stance and to point out that he made similar criticisms of White Ribbon Day in a column in the New Zealand Herald last year. His column is very well written: it is clearly explained, balanced and has a lot of supporting information. It's a model of how we could get a point across in the mass media.
The comments from readers were very supportive, but as you might guess Bob McCoskrie was attacked by the political class for his stance:
Women's groups and political leaders have rounded on Family First director Bob McCoskrie for refusing to wear a white ribbon today to oppose violence against women.
I went and looked up the Family First NZ site. It's very good. Some of its policies that are worth considering include:
- optional income splitting for couples for tax purposes
- considering fault when allocating levels of child support to remove economic incentives to divorce
- child support to take into account the income levels of both parents
- presumptive shared parenting
- measures to reduce divorce rates, including affordable premarital counselling