Thursday, January 27, 2011

There's Invasion Day of a different sort happening everytime some ignorant white chick opens her gob

Had an interesting chat with a lady a couple of years ago regarding Australia Day.
Or, as she termed it, Invasion Day.
She asked me how I felt about it being celebrated on January 26 (knowing we were of Indigenous descent) and I said it wasn't any bother to me, that the damage was done, that we all needed to acknowledge the damage but move onward and upward, fixing the mess that existed now.
Well, excuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me!
I was treated to a diatribe of why I should agree it be moved, why I should accept that its correct title is Invasion Day, why I should join the pack and accept that everyone else knew better.
And this last one that got me giggling - that I should just realise that current-day white Aussies wanted to make amends and people like me should just damn well accept it and let them get on with it.
Ahuh.
You lost me at the first "You should", lady.
Then, you managed to polish off your practiced prattle with claims that non-Indigenous people knew better and anyone agin the whole shemozzle should just put up and shut up.
Ahuh.
Yep.
Tell me, where exactly is the difference between the old paternalistic colonial attitude of "We know what's best for you Aborigines (sic)" and the current attitude that white Aussies want to make it all better so Indigenous People should just stand back and let them have at it?
Cos the white Aussies know what's best?
How about this for a freaking radical idea....
How about the govt acknowledges the absolute crap, the sheer terror, torture, vindictive murder, rape and unmitigated travesty of the treatment of the Indigenous People.
It happened, we all know it happened, playing ostrich isn't doing anything for the govt image.
How about they grow a pair of balls and admit much of it is still going on, with unofficial acceptance of racism at many levels.
It happens, we all know it happens, playing ostrich isn't doing anything for the govt image.
Then, how about we have a look and see which is more important -
Getting the current-day Indigenous communities in line with their non-Indigenous counterparts ... or rename a day?
Stop publishing exaggerated crime reports of Indigenous communities which only serve to brutally convince young children that they will amount to nothing ... or rename a day?
Get rid of the damn intervention happening up in the north, let the Indigenous communities begin to heal and build their self-respect ... or rename a frigging day?
Get the damn funding back into the schools so the kids who do not speak English aren't set up to fail by not having anyone to teach them in their native tongues and then in English...or rename a bloody day?

I know what I should be doing if I ran the freaking universe and what my first order of business should be - and it certainly wouldn't be the renaming or moving of a bloody useless day.

8 comments:

Wanderlust said...

But renaming a day is soooo much easier and more achievable.

People are strange. Sometimes I'm sure I was dropped off on the wrong planet.

Toni said...

OMG! I'm applauding here. Excellent post, chick.
There's so much that needs to be done, re-naming a day is only a sop to the conscience. It won't level the playing field. It won't keep kids in school. It won't create employment opportunities... I could go on and on. But you said it all better, anyway.

Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo said...

and the first thing you would do is name me Queen.

Of course.

Brilliant post babe, unfortunately first order of call is educating the young that everyone is created equal regardless of their race/skin colour/ religious affiliations and killing off all the old racist idiots that fill their minds with hate.

Red Nomad OZ said...

Unfortunately government priorities are about style, not substance irrespective of what their intentions are. It's inconceivable to me that there's a slavish devotion to the NBN (for example - insert any other major high profile project) when there is so much basic infrastructure to deliver basic human rights that needs fixing across the OZ community - but esepecially within the indigenous community.

Are you sending your post to Canberra?

Windsmoke. said...

No point in changing Australia Day to Invasion Day or anything else because you can't change history terrible as it was.

River said...

You're right. Renaming the day is a bloody useless idea.
I didn't even know that it was being called invasion day. When did that start?
Your other suggestions are what should be happening.

lavenderbay said...

In some ways, you Ozzies may be farther ahead than N-Ams.

This year's Bible/book study at my church is focusing on racism towards our First Nations, particularly as concerns the century-long residential school system (read: cultural genocide). Some people in the class didn't understand what our government had been up to, so I suggested they rent Rabbit Proof Fence and pay attention to the speech at the beginning.

I can't think of a Canadian (or American?) film that spells it out so well.

Beet said...

You're a legend babe!

Well said :)

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