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New Zealand Street Names Deemed “Too White”
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New Zealand Street Names Deemed “Too White”

By Tough Love | toughloveletters.wordpress.com

The Dunedin City Council in New Zealand has come under fire for compiling a list of names for new streets that is made up of only white men. 

It is unclear in the media who initially made this criticism of the list of 18 names, but it likely came from within the council itself.

Lisa Scott on Radio New Zealand's The Panel programme added that they were also old white men- the worst sin of all- while she proceeded to boast about the inflatable fireman she had with her.

Dunedin is New Zealand’s second-largest city in the South Island. It was founded by Scottish settlers and is known for it’s Victorian and Edwardian Architecture. Today the city is at least 78% European, 6.4% Maori, 5.3% Asian, 2.2% Pacific Islanders and 1.1% Other. In this light it’s not hard to understand why the list was dominated by white men.

The City Council’s website gives a few examples of naming streets:

Mcallister Lane: Dr McAllister worked in the Mosgiel/Taieri area for 50 years, especially in Maternity and Sports Medicine.

Fred Hollows Way: Mr Hollows Prominent eye surgeon who was born and trained in Dunedin. Founded the Fred Hollows Foundation.

These sound like (white) men who sacrificed themselves to build the strong community that is Dunedin today. It is hard working men like these who surely deserve to be celebrated rather than taken for granted and even denegrated as being “too white”. Sure the list could be more diverse, but it's interesting to observe the tone with which this has been addressed.

A further list is currently being compiled that Mayor Dave Cull hopes will reflect a "wider variety of cultural and gender backgrounds'.

The council is now calling for submissions for the public to help compile the expanded list.

Read more at nzherald.co.nz

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