Brian Easton touched on Don Brash’s willfull ignorance approach to race-based issues in a Listener article back in 2004:
Don Brash says, “I can’t think of anything in health which is specifically Maori.” So why treat Maori differently?
Sadly, the proportion of Maori who smoke, and as a consequence suffer the diseases from smoking and die early, is higher than that of Pakeha. Moreover, although there has been some success from the campaign to reduce smoking, it seems to have had little impact on Maori rates. So it makes sense to have a specifically Maori anti-smoking campaign, administered by Maori. One of its successes has been that most marae now ban smoking. No Pakeha-dominated organisation could have achieved such an outcome.