We must preserve tolerance and peace in debate over Israel-Gaza conflict


The 7th of November marked one month since an attack on Israel reignited bloody conflict in Gaza. This ongoing and devastating situation has continued to fuel intense emotions overseas and in New Zealand.

The cause is complex, and so is knowing the appropriate response.
We do not pretend to have the perfect answer.

But no matter which side we are on, if we strike at the basic democratic principles in our outrage, we will all be poorer.

One side can’t have the right to have their say without the other receiving the same. The opportunity to listen and provide counter-speech must exist, otherwise this wouldn’t be a democracy.

Would you sign this public letter, regardless of which side you come from on this issue, working with us to preserve open debate and civil discourse?



Together, we sign this letter whilst disagreeing on many things.

We disagree about a way forward in the Middle East, and we disagree about much to do with the Arab-Israeli conflict.

We all agree, however, on the basic principles of democracy and are united against violence.

We are appalled that a Member of Parliament required Police protection to leave a protest in Auckland Domain because he expressed an unpopular opinion. We condemn intimidation, violence, and intolerance. 

We are saddened by the unprecedented levels of both antisemitic and Islamophobic actions occurring around New Zealand associated with events overseas. Our common desire is that New Zealand would be a peaceful and free nation, where all people can speak freely and share their story.

We encourage all New Zealanders to use their voices to call out intolerance and hate, and to speak up for peace.

3,543 signature
Goal: 5000 signature

Will you sign?

Showing 2208 reactions

  • Anne Parker
    signed 2023-11-13 12:40:59 +1300
  • Ruth Richardson
    signed 2023-11-13 12:40:23 +1300
  • Wilma Halling
    signed 2023-11-13 12:39:28 +1300
  • Gary Wright
    signed 2023-11-13 12:37:23 +1300
  • Gordon & Elaine Bridge
    signed 2023-11-13 12:36:53 +1300
  • Russell Hohneck
    signed 2023-11-13 12:35:42 +1300
  • Glenda A
    signed 2023-11-13 12:35:16 +1300
  • Chris Walsh
    signed 2023-11-13 12:35:00 +1300
  • Anita Jackson
    signed 2023-11-13 12:34:00 +1300
  • Bill Clague
    signed 2023-11-13 12:33:57 +1300
  • Greg Maitland
    signed 2023-11-13 12:33:56 +1300
  • Marijke Aperloo
    signed 2023-11-13 12:33:01 +1300
  • Les Bowick
    signed 2023-11-13 12:32:02 +1300
  • Patricia Joseph
    signed 2023-11-13 12:31:54 +1300
    If people really knew the facts they would be pro-Israel. They are fighting for their very existence and the Palestinians as well. To do nothing would just be a continuation of Oct. 7th. It had all been planned and prepared for decades. Would we not retaliate to save our lives if such atrocities were done here?
  • Allan Brown
    signed 2023-11-13 12:29:11 +1300
  • Kevan Marks
    signed 2023-11-13 12:28:53 +1300
    Where is the fine line between hate speech and acceptable speech? It is almost impossible to say something without somebody taking offence! The law already exists for such speech to be defined.
  • Rachel Rapira Davies
    signed 2023-11-13 12:27:21 +1300
  • Malcolm McQueen
    signed 2023-11-13 12:25:45 +1300
  • Mark Davidson
    signed 2023-11-13 12:25:33 +1300
  • Brendon Ford
    signed 2023-11-13 12:25:32 +1300
    Stop harming children God said to look after the children stop all wars
  • Peter Jasper
    signed 2023-11-13 12:25:30 +1300
  • Ian Richardson
    signed 2023-11-13 12:22:55 +1300
  • Bill Whalley
    signed 2023-11-13 12:22:06 +1300
  • Peter John Claude
    signed 2023-11-13 12:21:40 +1300
  • Athina Andonatou
    signed 2023-11-13 12:21:32 +1300
  • Ash Wolfgramm-Rolfe
    signed 2023-11-13 12:21:31 +1300
    The ability for our communities to hold healthy, reasonable, productive discussions is tantamount to our success as a civilisation.
  • Neil Candy
    signed 2023-11-13 12:21:26 +1300
  • Nick Plant
    signed 2023-11-13 12:18:35 +1300
  • Melanie Baker
    signed 2023-11-13 12:16:16 +1300
  • Nick Willemse
    signed 2023-11-13 12:15:41 +1300