It's 48 minutes into tomorrow, so I will give a very quick report on the Forum on the Family hosted by Family First on Monday 15 October 2007.
We heard an excellent address from Garth McVicar of the Sensible Sentencing Trust. He is calling not primarily for longer sentences as such, but just that there would be integrity in our justice system, so that for instance, when a life sentence is handed out, it is in fact a life sentence. Currently, prisoners can get out on an automatic 1/3 of their sentence on parole. Many violent offenders (and that's a very politically correct way of putting it - what about scum of the earth) re-offend while out on bail, go back into jail for a few more years of the easy life, then back out onto the street again to molest or murder a few more innocent victims before the mind-numbingly stupid cycle again repeats itself.
John Tamihere spoke well about not much in particular.
Ian Grant captivated us with down to earth parenting tips. Quite frankly, I wasn't at the forum for parenting tips as I'm one or two years away from being in a position where such information would be helpful. :)
Christine Rankin gave a rousing commentary on her life, and how we should say positive things about people. Apparently she's a buddhist, well she's the blimmin well best buddhist I've met.
Ali Harley, despite her starting off comments, actually had a lot of useful things to say. Her big thing was "if you want to make a difference, if you want to get into the media, make sure that it is dead easy for the media, the reporters to get in touch with you - have your cellphone on!"
Mr. Guyan had some good points too. He's into Christian media. His message was "images are so much more powerful than words, it is images that stick in people's minds."
John Tamihere and Ian Grant disappointed me with their unnecessary use of the B word relating to paedophilia. I'm not going to rave about the low points, there weren't many. It was a good conference thanks Bob, and the good strong coffee and the fantastic food were really appreciated.
If you didn't make it to the forum this time round, be there in 2008.