As you might imagine, the news media is all over the South Auckland = badlands and haven for drunken no-hopers story.
In the Weekend Herald [21 June], reporter Yvonne Tahana has a half-page with two stories under two booze-soaked headlines.
Her language is deliberately poetic under the circumstances:
Cheap alcohol is the result of competition. Pour that into one of the most socio-economically deprived areas in the country and it’s been a cocktail for trouble, community leaders say.
The missing link here is “socio-economically deprived”. The problem is not the alcohol, but the deprivation. Drinking to excess is a symptom, not the cause of the issues.
Luckily I was able to find a shot glass of sense inside the Herald too. John Armstrong’s column was a sober assessment of the situation and it’s worth reading.