hOW TO sAy IT? sOmeBOdy hAd to

For too long we have maintained a silence closely resembling stupidity

Neil Roberts

November 18, 1982, at 12.35 am, Neal Ian Roberts detonated six sticks of gelignite in his backpack and in sight of the two security guards blew himself up in the foyer of the Wanganui Computer Centre. He was nearly 22. (from here)

I knew a barefoot bloke once. He was a punk who drank and pogoed at a band venue bar I worked at in the eighties. Underneath the safety pins and mascara he was really a hippy who eschewed the modern world. He died as a suicide bomber trying to blow up the Wanganui Computer Centre, NZ’s first attempt to put every citizen onto an e-database, and widely feared as the first step to Big Brother. He waved away the security guard that approached him, showing him the bomb, but alas was unsuccessful in his attempt to damage the infrastructure.

I remember him for his epitaph, spray-painted on the wall of the adjacent public toilet: “For too long we have maintained a silence closely resembling stupidity”. The wiki quote below* is incorrect, he had a nicer turn of phrase than that.

RIP (though he probably won’t)

— isawqpratwcity

*It leaves out the, “For too long…”