Martin Hanson

Activity

Many Christians favour humanity over doctrine

March 16, 2019 10:14AM

like almost all opponents of assisted dying, Chris O’Brien misrepresents me in several ways in his comment on Geoffrey Whaley’s posthumous letter to UK MPs. …

Just as inspiring, brave and honest

March 9, 2019 12:01PM

Following Geoffrey Whaley’s death at Dignitas in Switzerland, his widow sent the following letter to the UK Telegraph:How a law to permit assisted dying would …

A posthumous euthanasia letter to UK MPs

March 3, 2019 4:01AM

As in New Zealand, assisting a terminally ill person to end his or her life is a criminal offence in the UK, punishable by up …

Time to be freed from ‘obligation to endure’

February 9, 2019 11:56AM

As opinion polls have repeatedly shown, a substantial majority of New Zealanders believe that people suffering in the late stages of terminal illness should have …

Euthanasia and the Eighth Commandment

January 30, 2019 3:33PM

In the Roman Catholic version of the Ten Commandments, the Eighth is “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour”; an injunction that forbids …

Pell's porkies

January 19, 2019 3:15PM

Australians are much more willing to call a spade a shovel than we are. In the debate in the New South Wales Parliament on the …

Sickening reality of state-sanctioned suffering

January 6, 2019 4:01AM

Re: Sickening reality of state-sanctioned death, Dec 8 column. Continuing with the theme of cross-examination in my original open letter of November 25, I note …

Politically difficult, but essential

December 27, 2018 3:24PM

“If the people lead, the leaders will follow” — Gandhi.In its October 2018 report the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) stated that limiting global …

Telling lies for God?

December 16, 2018 4:01AM

In the Beehive, MPs don’t lie, they “mislead Parliament”. Such a euphemism is, of course, necessary to preserve the public perception that our honourable representatives …

Open letter to Chris Penk, MP for Helensville

November 25, 2018 4:01AM

In a court of law a crucial factor in the search for truth is the ability of counsel for each side to cross-examine the other …

Just congenially warmer, ages away?

November 17, 2018 8:45AM

Some extraordinarily confused comments from Gordon Webb and Baz Davies call for a response, so here goes.Just as countries vary in their greenhouse gas (GHG) …

Last vestiges of theocracy cast off

November 16, 2018 1:20PM

October 26, 2018 was the day the Irish people voted by 64.8 percent to 35.1 percent for the deletion of the word “blasphemous” from the …

Total national emissions not the point

November 9, 2018 12:08PM

I am grateful to Gordon Webb for his comments on my column “Are governments serious about climate change?”, partly for giving me the opportunity to …

Are Governments serious about climate change?

November 4, 2018 4:01AM

Like many others, I am very concerned about the lack of government commitment to deal with climate change, which threatens the future of my two …

Burden of proof lies with claimant

November 3, 2018 3:47PM

In his recent column “Faith is not contrary to reason”, Ken Orr asks: “where . . . is the evidence that there is no soul …

Global warming and the press

October 14, 2018 4:01AM

The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report makes it clear that, as The Guardian put it, “The world’s leading climate scientists have warned there …

Cuts no ice with thinking people

October 6, 2018 9:42AM

Yet again I must take an analytical scalpel to Ken Orr’s recent effort (September 29 column). In invoking “our Creator” it’s clear that he doesn’t …

Sign of weakness of argument

September 29, 2018 10:29AM

Misrepresentation is a sure sign of weakness of argument. When people feel intensely about an issue, it is all too easy for emotions to get …

Gender politics in the media asylum

September 22, 2018 10:19AM

The recent hullabaloo about the Serena Williams cartoon illustrates how far political correctness has the media firmly in its grip, but it’s hardly anything new. …

Souls or lives? A response to Ken Orr

September 21, 2018 3:28PM

Yet again I find myself having to wield the axe over Ken Orr’s nonsense. As a devout Catholic, he says in his latest effort, Every …

Psychopaths threaten us all . . .

August 26, 2018 4:01AM

The agribusiness giant Monsanto has been found guilty in a San Francisco court of concealing its knowledge that its flagship herbicide Roundup can cause cancer. …

Rhetorical sticks and free speech

August 9, 2018 12:01PM

Phil Goff would have been advised to think before condemning Lauren Southern, so here are some facts. In the 2016 BBC Channel 4 documentary “What …

Coming home to roost . . .

August 5, 2018 4:01AM

Over-population — do we solve it ourselves, or must nature do it for us? In 2013 Sir David Attenborough ruffled some feathers when, in an …

Our lives don’t belong to your god, Bishop Brennan

August 2, 2018 6:32PM

Do the lives of the majority of New Zealanders belong to the god worshipped by the minority? An article in the July 24 edition of …

On intelligence, IQ and genes . . .

July 28, 2018 1:25PM

Among online comments on my column “Race, intelligence . . . and politics” (July 17), was one from “Lara”, who wrote that: “IQ testing is …

Signs global warming is in overdrive

July 21, 2018 1:38PM

AN online reader of The Gisborne Herald has stated that planet Earth has had much higher CO2 levels than today and as he points out, …

‘Race’, intelligence . . . and politics

July 17, 2018 12:10PM

There are certain subjects on which it seems we are just not grown up enough to talk about for fear of accusations of “racism”. Top …

How green is New Zealand?

July 15, 2018 4:01AM

Having spent more than half my life in New Zealand, I thought it appropriate to reflect upon the reasons I brought my family out from …

History shows that’s not true . . .

June 29, 2018 1:22PM

The trouble with religiously motivated arguments is that it’s difficult to be internally consistent. In the penultimate paragraph of his March 3 column “Moral Authority …

Who’s guilty of misrepresentation?

May 26, 2018 10:08AM

According to the “Catechism of the Catholic Church”, a book issued by Pope John Paul, the Eighth Commandment forbids misrepresenting the truth in our relations …

The New Zealand KGB?

May 11, 2018 4:41PM

On March 16, 2018, 77-year-old Patsy McGrath went into Nelson to collect a cylinder of helium which had been illegally confiscated 524 days earlier. On …

Best response: more free speech

May 6, 2018 4:01AM

The French writer, polemicist and philosopher Voltaire remarked: “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your …

Is extreme old age a terminal condition?

April 22, 2018 4:01AM

David Seymour’s End of Life Choice bill, now before Parliament, is similar to legislation and proposed legislation in other countries in that it is restricted …

Do we learn anything from history?

April 20, 2018 4:18PM

With concerns about the possibility of war with Russia, “it’s déjà vu all over again”, as Yogi Berra once said. That history comes so close …

Only seeing what they want to

April 14, 2018 12:16PM

In the first paragraph of his column “Disabled want assisted living, not dying” (April 7), Ken Orr employs the rhetorical tactic of confusing Paula Tesoriero’s …

Religious ‘filter’ keeps evidence at bay

April 9, 2018 12:02PM

In his latest press release, Ken Orr gives us a lesson in the power of religion to illustrate the truth of the proverb that the …

The Russians did it! Or did they?

April 6, 2018 12:13PM

After the Iraq weapons of mass destruction experience, one would have thought people would be a little cautious before accepting government assurances about the recent …

What are the ingredients of happiness?

April 1, 2018 4:01AM

“Money doesn’t bring happiness” is a saying as old as the hills, but is it true, and if not, what, if anything, does? This seemingly …

Threat to credibility, not the disabled

March 17, 2018 10:15AM

Like Donald Trump, Ken Orr has resorted to “alternative facts” conjured up inside his head, rather than using the source that he is criticising. I’m …

Why such fear of the ‘o’ word?

March 11, 2018 4:01AM

What do the words “drug problem” conjure up in your mind? If you’re anything like most people, you’ll be thinking of methamphetamine, cannabis, cocaine, ecstasy …

Should be able to avoid suffering

March 3, 2018 11:00AM

I thought I had said everything I could on the case for voluntary euthanasia, but if John Fricker will forgive me, I’d like to respond …

A complete loss of moral authority

February 24, 2018 9:01AM

In his February 18 column “Prayer move a rejection of Christ”, Ken Orr asks why, in seven generations, we have changed dramatically from a Christian …

Euthanasia: Dissembling for Jesus

February 17, 2018 8:29AM

In its “Call to Action” on euthanasia, the Nathaniel Centre urged Catholics to make a submission to the Parliamentary Justice Select Committee. In doing so, …

A duty to warn?

February 11, 2018 4:01AM

Anyone who has watched President Donald Trump on television knows the man is not “normal”. Journalists and politicians talk freely of extreme narcissism, compulsive lying, …

Euthanasia or killing? A case of deception

February 3, 2018 9:27AM

Once again, I find myself expressing my gratitude to Ken Orr for giving me the opportunity to help him think clearly (Re: Compassion does not …

Two questions for too-hard basket

January 27, 2018 1:31PM

Until 1961, attempted suicide was punishable by two years hard labour, as laid down in the Crimes Act of 1908. And not just in New …

Statement of belief is not evidence

January 17, 2018 2:34PM

Ken Orr seems to be unable to argue a case without misrepresenting what others have said.In his recent column (Defence of life drives Right to …

Callous disregard for suffering

January 13, 2018 9:03AM

Although my recent column was headed “The moral right to death assistance”, it was mostly devoted to exposing the speciousness of the arguments of Philip …

Moral right to death assistance

January 9, 2018 1:51PM

I am grateful to Philip Creed (December 27 letter) for unwittingly giving me the opportunity to comment on techniques people use when attempting to win …

Mass murder or tragic blunder?

January 7, 2018 4:01AM

“NEVER before in the history of the US Navy has a navy board of inquiry ignored the testimony of American eyewitnesses and taken, on faith, …

The power of denial

December 24, 2017 4:01AM

The Nobel prize-winning physicist Albert Einstein once reportedly said: “Only two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the …

Religious dogma drives Right to Life

December 22, 2017 11:46AM

Before the 1961 Crimes Act, attempted suicide was illegal in New Zealand, carrying penalties prescribed by the 1908 Crimes Act of two years imprisonment with …

‘Intelligent design’ highly unlikely

December 21, 2017 11:08AM

In responding to my earlier column, Esther Henderson (December 16 column: Only one God, Bible offers ‘big picture’) reminds us that great scientists such as …

The Old Testament as antidote to biblical fundamentalism

November 5, 2017 8:01AM

Not long ago I was blessed with a visit to my front door by two Jehovah’s Witnesses. Having taught evolution for 40 years, I was …

Pain, suffering is heart of issue

November 2, 2017 12:47PM

Who speaks for those who want the legal right to end their suffering?With the change in government, and a bill introduced to Parliament by ACT …

The Ten Commandments: a guide to life?

October 22, 2017 8:01AM

AS REPORTED in Exodus 20: 2-17 and Deuteronomy 5: 6-21, the Ten Commandments were given to Moses on Mt Sinai, on two stone tablets. On …

Cover-up even more serious

October 3, 2017 8:49AM

In his letter of September 28, it seems that Msgr Eggleton must have been in too much of a hurry to respond to what I …

Assisted dying: the right to choose

September 24, 2017 8:01AM

Ken Orr’s reply to my op-ed (Is NZ really a secular state?) prompts some further thoughts. Most obvious is the fact that he completely ignores …

Theocracy’s Last Gasp

August 30, 2017 11:49AM

Ken Orr’s op-ed piece (Euthanasia is a dangerous, unwise policy, August 26) is a confused regurgitation of ill-concealed religious dogma. I’ll take his sentiments in …

Law unable to deal with problem

August 5, 2017 11:41AM

I’m sorry Clive Bibby has such a low opinion of school teachers, and I’m at a loss to know how he seems to think that …

Legal drugs cause much more harm than cannabis

August 2, 2017 11:38AM

People with views that are impervious to evidence often find reasoned argument a threat, so I must apologise in advance if a rational response causes …

Needed: Cool heads and clear thinking

June 11, 2017 9:01AM

THE recent Manchester bombing and knife attack in London are a reminder of the desperate need for objectivity and intellectual honesty, both of which have …

Evils clear, despite airbrushing

June 8, 2017 11:23AM

Re: Colonists never integrated, June 7 letter.John Porter is quite correct in deploring the colonial behaviour of “Pakeha” nations, but he seems to assume, without …

Weaponised words

May 21, 2017 9:01AM

IF ONE were asked to think of one word that has the most power to generate heat, a front-runner must be “racism”. To begin with, …

One man’s journey to reality . . .

May 12, 2017 12:09PM

Nathan (“Nate”) Hagens is an interesting guy. Emerging with an MBA with Honours in Finance from the University of Chicago, he thought the world would …

US record on MidEast child welfare

April 28, 2017 12:16PM

From recent White House statements, you’d think America had suddenly become deeply concerned about the welfare of children in the Middle East. More than 70 …

Social cost of extreme inequity

April 23, 2017 9:01AM

The December 22 edition of Forbes magazine gave the total wealth of the then President-elect Trump’s nominees for cabinet posts as $4.5 billion, all but …

'Right to life' and conservatism

April 8, 2017 9:21AM

ACCORDING to a 2011 United Nations document, five countries have an absolute ban on abortion under any circumstances. Even when the mother’s life is at …

Origins of terrorism in Middle East

March 22, 2017 11:18AM

In his letter of March 15 (Ball with Palestinian leadership), Patrick Cooper rightly points out that hatred exists on both sides, and reminds us of …

Signs of closed minds

February 26, 2017 10:33AM

The Nobel Prize-winning physicist Albert Einstein reportedly remarked: “Condemnation before investigation is the height of ignorance.” Einstein died in 1955, but had he been alive …

Earthquakes, trucks and oil

November 24, 2016 2:14PM

The recent earthquake has been a forceful reminder of our vulnerability to geological forces. Several letters to the editor have pointed out that as far …

The right to end your suffering . . .

November 20, 2016 10:26AM

Should the elderly have the right to end their own pain and disability? In June 2015 Lecretia Seales died of an inoperable brain tumour. It …

The longest war

August 16, 2016 9:01AM

MARK Twain reportedly said: “history doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme”. If he were alive today, he would have to agree that in the …

A cautionary tale from the past

May 22, 2016 9:31AM

“THOSE who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” So said George Santayana, the Spanish author and philosopher. He was, of course, referring …

Addicted to slavery

April 24, 2016 9:31AM

SOMETIMES a particular movie makes such an impact that it continues to stick in one’s memory decades later. A video I used to show to …