WATCH: NZ dad says 'hate crime' was an act of love

Man fined $16,000 for painting over Auckland's rainbow crossing says he would 'absolutely' do it again.

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New Zealand man Ford O'Connor, who was convicted and fined $16,000 for painting over an LGBTQI+ rainbow pedestrian crossing in Auckland, speaks out about his motivations and stance on what the NZ media has branded a 'hate crime.'

Ford, married to Destiny Church leader Brian Tamaki’s granddaughter, expressed his unwavering commitment to safeguarding the innocence of his children.

He said that after watching events unfold where individuals from the church were arrested at a similar incident in Gisborne, he felt compelled to take action.

As a father of four, he said he felt motivated to stand up over his concerns about the influences on children, particularly regarding promoted LGBTQ+ events like 'Drag Queen Storytime'.

Ford recounted his decision to paint over the rainbow crossing on Auckland’s Karangahape Road, a symbolic location for the LGBTQ+ community.

Despite facing backlash from mainstream media and segments of the public, Ford strerssed the importance of his stand.

Although fined $16,000 and with a conviction recorded against him, Ford remained resolute, stating that he would take the same action again.

He clarified that his act wasn't rooted in hatred towards LGBTQ+ individuals but was driven by a desire to draw attention to the normalisation and promotion of the sexuality in public spaces.

Responding to questions about the severity of the penalty, Ford highlighted the potential for facing even harsher consequences, including imprisonment.

He reiterated that his primary concern was the future well-being of children, and his actions were motivated by love, not hate.

Ford acknowledged the financial burden of the fine but expressed gratitude for the support he had received, including offers of financial assistance from individuals and the Destiny Church community.

He encouraged others to stand up for their beliefs and urged bravery in the face of potential repercussions. He thanked those who supported him and stressed the importance of sharing perspectives beyond mainstream media narratives.

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