Genocide Ordained

Was the total extermination of Australia’s Indigenous people deliberately intended?  Of course it was.  It was OK to shoot Aborigines.  God had no problems with good white Christians killing Aborigines as it was the white man’s belief that God had condemned Aborigines to extinction, and the white man was simply hurrying things along for Him.  It had His stamp of approval.  It was ordained genocide.

But the massacre of Aborigines was frowned upon by latter Colonial and Federal Governments, however, it did not mean that they were not considered a doomed race.  These governments had a sinister role to play in that consideration; that of the evolutionary masters.  That of God.

Let us trace this.

The nineteenth European scientific discourse of the Great Chain of Being, arranged all living things in a hierarchy, beginning with the simplest creatures, ascending through the primates and to humans.  It was also practice to distinguish between different types of humans.  Through the hierarchical chain the various human types could be ranked in order of intellect and active powers.  The Europeans – being God-fearing and intelligent – were invariably placed on the top, whilst the Aborigines – as perceived savages – occupied the lowest scale of humanity, slightly above the position held by the apes.  Such ideas were carried to and widely circulated in the Australian colonies and helped shape attitudes towards the Aborigines.  So dominant was the concept that it helped develop the fate of Aboriginal people, even before Australia’s colonisation.  The image of the Aborigine simply confirmed prejudices based on this doctrine of evolutionary difference and intellectual inferiority.

In harmony with the Great Chain of Being, the theory of evolution in the social sciences (known as Social Darwinism), was accepted by nineteenth and early twentieth century Australians as further justification for their treatment of the Aborigines.  Central to the theory of Social Darwinism was the ideology that the Aborigines, who were considered to be less evolved, faced extinction under the impact of European colonisation and nothing could, or should, be done about it.  Government policies reflected these ideologies and provided the validation of oppressive practices towards the Aborigines, founded on the perceptions of racial superiority.

Four of the major policies are those relating to protection; segregation; assimilation; and the integration of Aboriginal people into the wider community.

Protection was influenced by the evolutionary theory that Aborigines would die out as a result of European contact.  Subsequently, all that could be done was to feed and protect them until their unavoidable demise.  The policy thus took on short term palliative measures that saw enforced concentration of Aborigines in reserves and missions – protected from European contact and abuse (such as hunting parties) to await their closing hour.

This policy was a humane one based on its presumptions, however, nature had not selected Aborigines for extinction.  Only the colonisers had.  Subsequently, governments eventually and willingly used protection policies as a mechanism for social engineering.  The policies of protection changed its fundamental goal to segregation.  Their differences are difficult to identify although their purposes are not: Aborigines were a dying race so they were protected from the wider community; the Aboriginal race had failed to die off, so they were segregated from the wider community.

The social theories that legitimised and institutionalised racism were never more evident than in the practices of segregation.  Segregation created two social and political worlds in Australia: one white and one black.  Whilst the Aboriginal race had ignored extinction, Government policies reflected the attitude that, nonetheless, by the 1940s they had still failed to progress since European contact.  Sentiment thus ruled that continued segregation of the Aborigines from the wider community would ensure white racial purity.

Segregation was pervasive in all aspects of public or political life.  Church or social organisations discouraged Aboriginal participation, and access to community facilities such as swimming pools or theatres were severely restricted, if not refused altogether.  Custom in many business establishments was also refused for fear of offending the white clientele.  Perhaps the most damning indicator of this racism, however, was the neglect of medical treatment and health services by white practitioners.  Policies of segregation were to degenerate into practises of apartheid when, in South Australia for example, association between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people became a criminal offence under Section 14 of the Police Offences Act 1953.

The policies of protection and segregation were continued even though the Aborigines had not faced their final hour.  ‘Full-bloods’ remained on reserves until their demise, yet the problem for the government came in the form of the ‘half-caste’.  These people looked increasingly like white people but behaved like ‘Black’ people.  The only was this could be countered was to assimilate them into the general population.

Assimilation of the lighter-caste population was still an endeavour to destroy Aboriginality: by absorbing them into the wider community – the breeding out of the colour, the process of genetic change –  it was hoped that they would eventually disappear.  A radical suggestion that selective mating would breed out the colour was also proposed.

Of the endless record of horrors associated with colonisation and racial supremacy, some of the assimilation policies adopted in the 1950s equal the worst.  In particular the taking of children away from their families by the Protection Board – as their legal guardians – and disposing of them as they saw fit.  As a prelude to the Reconciliation Convention, the Government reflected on this practice:

Children were taken away under government policies of protection and assimilation aimed at having indigenous people adopt European culture and behaviour to the exclusion of their family and background.  The assimilation policy presumed that, over time, indigenous people would die out or be so mixed with the European population they became indistinguishable (The Path to Reconciliation 1997, p 24).

Yes, I would argue that the total extermination of Australia’s Indigenous people was deliberately intended.  If not by the bullet, then by the policies of those governments that saw them as a stain on white purity.  God favoured the white man and they set out to do His work.

142 comments on “Genocide Ordained

  1. I think your perception of those events is rather naive and coloured by converse racism. From a sociological perspective, what occurred was a massive clash of cultures between the invading settlers who were agriculturalist and industrial communities, and an indigenous Koori population which was nomadic and hunter/gatherers. As the agriculturalists expanded their land acquisition as was also happening in Europe and Anerica, they impinged more and more on the nomadic hunter/gatherer lifetyle of the Koori population. Some attempts were made to integrate the aborigines into the `western’ culture by offering them farm work and training etc, but the Koori were unable to grasp the `Work ethic’ of Europeans. As the European settler population grew the conflicts at all levels were inevitable – some measures were humanitarian and others were cruel as you say. It was very similar to the land acquisition by European settlers in America and the taking of lands from the Native Americans. This clash of cultures is still in evidence today and the integration of the two diametrically opposed cultures and the inherent conflicts are still present. The current resistance of the predominantly European culture to the influx of Asian and Arab cultures reflect a similar process. Cultural and ethnic conflicts within the same territorial domain are notoriously difficult to reconcile, as can be seen by many of the armed conflcts occurring around the world at the present time. Such conflicts are not simply resolved by trite statements about a country being `multiculturalist’.

  2. This is precisely the sort of information which should be taught in every school. It is not just in health and education and the basics of life which the Aboriginal people have been deprived of, but they are also have been excluded from our history books.

    Just perhaps if this information was included, those who hold racist attitudes might decide to reevaluate these.

  3. Jarl, you are the naive one.

    The indigenous people are responsible for the creating of the cattle industry in the Territory.

    There was not a clash of culture. The culture of native people was not even acknowledged.

    I, as a child had the opportunity to visit a reserve in the Riverina, NSW in the early 1950’s. I still remember the effect it had on me, as my father’s car boot was searched. It was a humiliating experience.

    This reserve was miles out of a small town, within a forest. Well hidden I would say.

    We were there to pick up a young lady to work in the home.

    We also had women from Cootamundra Girls Home and other institutions. My mother has close contact with the Aboriginal Protection Board.

    The people were not treated as adults. They were treated as inferior human beings.

    I worked in Northern Queensland in the 1960s, as a governess. I was shocked at the treatment they received, mostly by good people.

    People can make all the excuses they like, but it does not change the reality these people endured.

    You would say the children were removed for their protection.

    The question I ask you, is why did they leave the full blood behind. Surely they were also at risk.

  4. Miglo, I am not sure that racism began in this country because of the indigenous people. I believe that most people had no contact and seen them as inferior anyway.

    Racism began with the influx and fear of the Asian and other races that came with the gold rushes.

    Why, I would

    The Indigenous were very rarely part of the wider community.

  5. Cu, the Europeans still thought they knew everything there was to know about Aborigines, based on Dampier’s description of them as being ‘the miserablist people’ on the earth. Cook relied on Dampier’s writings as an introduction to his own encounters. Cook had nothing to add.

  6. Cu, you might wish to read my Honour’s thesis on this subject, which might add further light to where I’m coming from. It will give me great pleasure to send it to you. Just say the word. 🙂

  7. I do know from the people I met from the institutions, that they were strongly encouraged to deny they were black and see themselves as white.

    This was disastrous for most.

    I am all in favour of multiculturalism.

    If I was not, I would have trouble a any family gathering, where many races are present. I am a great grand mother and very proud of my considerable tribe. My ancestors came to this country in the early 1800’s.

    PS. My grandmother delivered their babies at the end of the 19c in the central NSW.

  8. Miglo, I would love that. You are aware I have strong beliefs on this subject.

    You would have loved the battles my mother had with the Protection Board with a old maid with the name.. Better not say it, but I have poor recollection for names but I have never forgot hers. She made a big impression on me as a seven or eight year old.

    My family did not abuse them but they were sure patronising.

    My grandfather truly believed that they would never amount to much.

    I am sure that he would be proud of his descendants and be happy to be proven wrong.

    They are the grandchildren of a Indigneous person who has a building named after him in Canberra. They are the forgotten family, not the one that is recorded in all the stories of the man.

  9. True Min, if the information had been included in every school syllabus, there would now be an understanding of what has taken place under the heading of
    white settlement.
    Terms such as clash of cultures are for another post, and are no excuse for the mis-treatment of Indigenous Australians.

    Consider the reality of paying them a lesser amount to their white co-workers on the cattle and sheep stations until the Wave Hill events.

    Thinking that it was appropriate to underpay some workers because of their colour can only be due to a racist attitude..

  10. Miglo, I shared most of the common views up to my early teens. It occurred to me that my beliefs did not compute what I was seeing around me.

    As time went on, I rejected all my impressions of the Indigenous people and am now a proud supporter of the black arm band view of history.

    I do not see how acknowledging truth can harm my view of this country,

    We have done much that we should be proud of. We have done much that brings shame. Much was done by good people for the wrong reasons.

    We are not responsible for the harm that was done.

    We are responsible in acknowledging the truth and to do all we can to undo the wrongs.

  11. Your little anecdotes and homilies are all very interesting but do not represent the bigger picture. You will never be able to resolve the issue of racial tolerance and co-living unless you understand the wider elements in play.
    Miglo – `multiculturalism’ (however you may wish to define it), has been a disaster in every part of the world. Wherever there have been people divided by race, culture, ethnicity, religion etc and living in the same terrirotial domain there always has been and will continue to be conflict. e.g. Yugoslavia, Israel/Palestime, Lebanon, Spain, Sudan, Somalia, Northern Ireland, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia etc etc – the list is endless. Is that what you eventually want for Australia – a land riven by ethnic and racial divides and conflicts?. Because that is what your `multiculturalism’ will eventually lead to. Or maybe you just mean its nice to have a Chinese takeaway at the end of the street and a Kebab shop at the other end.

  12. Jarl, I think you will find more in play than nationality. Poverty and power play a big part.

    Jarl, we have been multicultural since day one. We have endured and enjoyed mass immigration since the second world war.

    We have rejected and accepted every wave of immigration since then.

    I am sure we will continue in this manner and continue to grow as a vibrant and interesting country.

    There are more that all races share than what divides them.

    Where do you come from” I do hope we have made you feel welcome.

  13. Cu, Ragnvald is an old viking name and was among the Orkney viking names.

    They invaded Orkney and other parts of Scotland, Ireland and England and weren’t very polite about it !!

  14. PS. I also raised my family in the western suburbs of Sydney.

    Guildford to be exact, the suburb that was then and today is mostly populated by people from the middle east. Muslims and Coptic Christians.

    I then moved to Cabramatta, another migrant area.

    I do know a little of what it is to live among these people.

    I found most helpful and with the same values as me. That is family was the cornerstone of our lives.

    There was only one neighbour I wished I did not have and she was very white.

  15. “Your little anecdotes and homilies are all very interesting but do not represent the bigger picture”

    They are also facts and what I have experience over seventy years.

    What is the bigger picture. A country that has become what I believe great by accepting people from all races over sixty years.

    The big picture is that this country is now a lot more exciting than it was in the 1950’s.

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  17. Jarl @9.50pm thank you for the history lesson. Yes that’s right, mostly the white fella took Aboriginal land without paying for it, however some right-minded whites considered it wrong to steal.

    Your argument is that it’s ok to steal because the white man did not understand Aboriginal culture. No, terra nullius was just the excuse for exploitation. Europeans of the 19th Century successfully negotiated treaties with other indigenous peoples which recognised them as the owners of the land. No such recognition was given to the Aboriginal people.

    What they did after that of course is history. By way of example white Europeans also managed a document called The Treaty of Waitangi, which BTW was also written in Maori. Therefore, ignorance by 19th Century Europeans who just so happened to land in Australia is no excuse.

    Sadly, you are guilty of something which would have failed a year 7 English comprehension’s called a rash generalisation and that goes double for condescending remark aimed at Catching up.

    And @11.16pm

    Miglo – `multiculturalism’ (however you may wish to define it), has been a disaster in every part of the world. Wherever there have been people divided by race, culture, ethnicity, religion etc and living in the same terrirotial domain there always has been and will continue to be conflict. e.g. Yugoslavia, Israel/Palestime, Lebanon, Spain, Sudan, Somalia, Northern Ireland, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia etc etc – the list is endless.

    These are not examples of ‘multiculturism’, these are examples of segregation. And I’ll give you an example. In the USA and during the time when there were ‘white only’ toilets, interracial marriages banned in some states, segragation of education, it was almost impossible for a black American (especially a woman) to be taken seriously as a performing artist.

    Even into the 50s performers such as Ray Charles had to separate from members of his band and stay in a different hotel..a ‘black’ one of course. Therefore many artists moved to France where there was no segretation and the people due to centuries of multicultural influences accepted people for their talent. The color of the person’s skin was irrelevant. I would therefore compare France with the USA and aparteid South Africa. One has/had segregation, the other is multicultural. Which has had the most racial violence?

  18. Pip @11.34pm, and the Welsh are only now reclaiming substantial aspects of their culture including the Welsh language. Welsh children caught speaking the language were made to wear a placard stating “Welsh not” and those using the traditional Welsh naming pattern of ap or verch (son of, daughter of) risked fines and imprisonment. Therefore instead of my ancestor being Owen ap John he became Owen Jenkins.

    I believe that Aboriginal children were similarly punished for speaking their native language.

  19. Min, for a person proudly using a viking name, Ragnvald seems uninterested in the bastardry and brutality of ‘invaders’.

  20. The Prime Minister of England and the Heads of government in France and Germany have all declared that `multiculturalism’ has been a failure in their respective countries. This is largely because immigrant ethnic groups have self-segregated and formed ethnic enclaves. In some instances whole cities are now ethnic enclaves e.g. Leicester, Bradford, Wolverhampton, Oldham, Blackburn etc. They are now proceeding to distance themselves even further from the indigenous English peoples by adopting their own laws e.g. Sharia and seeking to impose their religions, laws, and customs on the wider population. In consequence there is now a fermenting social unrest and instability. The same occurred in past centuries in Northern Ireland, Yugoslavia, etc and is a recipe for internal conflicts and civil warfare in the future. Most of the wars which are occurring around the world at the present time have been caused by religious and cultural differences in ethnic groups occupying the same territories.
    The setting up of ethnic enclaves by Arab and Asian groups is already occurring in Australia and will no doubt increase as more arrive unhindered by Australian government policies. Australia is clearly incapable of learning from the European experiences.

    I did not say, “Your argument is that it’s ok to steal because the white man did not understand Aboriginal culture”, nor could what I said be construed as such. I was providing a detached and unemotive observation of what has occurred and without indicating my approval or disapproval of what occurred. Just as I shall continue to do. So please do not seek to impose your beliefs and perceptions on me.

    Ask yourself as one of the invading peoples occupying Koori land to live and work on and exploit, what are you doing to recompense the Koori peoples for your personal gains at their expense and offer redress for what you have taken.?. You are a part of the problem and would not be occupying the land you use, were it not for the earlier settler generations. It is easy to condemn their methods but in short, what they did was in your name and you are enjoying the fruits of their endeavours. Perhaps you may wish to consider giving back to the Kooris any land you may own or your monetary and other gains from occupying their lands. It would be far more productive and helpful to the Koori people than writing in blogs bemoaning their sufferings and condemning those who secured your wealth at their expense.

    I do have a great deal of sympathy for the Koori people of Australia having been a nomadic, hunter/gatherer race for thousands of years and within a few centuries having to cope in an age of high tech, industrialised world around them. I don’t have an answer for such a problem and neither do you but whingeing about the past atrocities and condemnatory attitudes towards people in the past who were similarly facing a challenge of survival, does not help in any way. It may give you feelings of piety and superiority but it goes nowhere in resolving the issues.

    Pip – Far from being `uninterested in the bastardry and brutality’ of my ancestors, I am well versed in their activities and their history, but I neither approve nor condemn them, as I have not walked a mile in their shoes and in their times.

  21. Jarl, I was not referring just to viking invaders, and would point out to you that in the case of Northern Ireland, the English imported Scottish Presbyterians to deliberately change the demographics.

    However, Jarl, this post is not about ‘multiculturalism’, and the thread has successfully been derailed …

    Back to Miglo’s opening line
    Was the total extermination of Australia’s Indigenous people deliberately intended?

  22. Pip – it was implicit in your remarks – if not, then why mention Vikings and my ancestry as some kind of implied slur.?.
    “Imported’ is a value-laden description which does not reflect the main reasons the Scottish Presbyterians moved to Ireland. It was largely the same reason why Europeans, and now Asians, and Arabs have moved to Australia – the acquisition of land and wealth.
    So your definition of multi-culturalism does not include the Koori population. Interesting – do you consider them an ethnic group which is not involved in what is happening in the wider community.?. I see attempts to introduce and honour their culture e.g. art and music, everyday in the media and on the streets. Are they not therefore a part of the multi-cultural community which you are aspiring to impose in Australia.?.

  23. By definition, if multiculturalism, however you define it, is opposed, because it is by definition imposed, then by definition it will be and is a disaster; and modern-day invasions by definition, like historical invasions by definition, are proof of this. This is all objective stuff.

  24. Jarl you presume far too much. As I pointed out, you introduced multiculturalism to this post.

    Back to this thread.

    Do you think the total extermination of Australia’s Indigenous people was deliberately intended?

  25. Jarl re Ask yourself as one of the invading peoples occupying Koori land to live and work on and exploit, what are you doing to recompense the Koori peoples for your personal gains at their expense and offer redress for what you have taken.?

    You are making a value judgement based upon your preconceived idea about what it means ‘to work on’. Aboriginal peoples worked the land the same as did European settlers. It might not have been the furrowed fields and sheep and goats that Europeans at that stage perceived as ‘farming’ and animal husbandry, but it is still farming.

    All treaties with indigenous peoples brought with it compensation, the exception being when it was a war-like invasion.

  26. Pip – “deliberately intended” would not be my choice of words as they imply there was a concerted plan to do so. I think it was the beliefs and values of those days, and the European values in particular of acquisitiveness and avarice (still very obviously present in our society today) which drove the actions of the invading people. (as it does today). You have evaded my question of whether you have personally benefitted from the settler invasion of this country and the removal of the aborigines lands and title, and if so, how are you making personal redress. The guilt of the early settlers is your guilt, and though you may disagree with their methods of acqusition, I’m sure you enjoy the benefits which they brought.
    Min – multiculturalism is being `imposed’ in Australia either deliberately (failure to secure an offshore processing) or mission (failure to impose any form of restrictions on entry), and no euphemisms will change that. If it is not, then why are the Australian people being denied a plebiscite on such an important issue or that no political party will even mention it at a general election. It is being imposed therefore without the will of the people.

  27. Min – `Working on” means sitting in your office or home or for that matter walking in parks, is on land that was taken from the Kooris on your behalf. So you are comfortable that those aboriginal people were adequately compensated for the land which was forcibly taken from them and which they did not want to sell, and that now gives you entitlement and a clear conscience that others have caused their problems and who you now condemn for having done so..

  28. Jarl and “the European values in particular of acquisitiveness and avarice”. Not in particular, rather as per Miglo’s topic a certain amount of egotism perceiving that their way was/is the only way.

    There are very few cultures where wealth is not judged on the number of cattle, wives, gold, credit cards one owns.

  29. Jarl, no I am not comfortable that we now sit on land where the original inhabitants were clearly inadequately compensated.

    We have two factors, one being that the exploitation of Aboriginal homelands continues to this day by avaricious individuals such as Twiggy Forrest.

    The second factor is that disregarding compensation, Aboriginal communities are being deprived of basic amenities available to 99.9% of all white communities. For example, would a white neighborhood tolerate a situation where there was no clean drinking water and the Council collected the garbage only once a month.

  30. Meta, rather than opposed or imposed would not multiculturalism be termed an amalgamation.

    That, to this mind, precisely, seems to be a matter of some discussion, and perhaps a discussion not without relevance to contemporary mono-, di- and poly-chotomous understandings of the perceived (im)potential(s) of (small-picture, (un)defined-(but)-(in)definitely-wrong?) multiculturalism, and, say, (un)identifiable Australian Indigenous culture(s) and expressions: 3.1 Cosmopolitan view of culture.

  31. Min and Migs, cannot help but agree.

    Segregation and racism is the cause of violence in these communities.

    Take Ireland for instance, the trouble was seen as hatred between the Irish and the English. The Catholics and Protestant were on different sides.

    Right, I say not. I noticed that when people from both sides got on well together when they came to this country. What was different. I say, that in Australia, both were treated equally.

    In Ireland, the Catholics were poor and very few job opportunities. The Protestants had all the political power and were wealthy.

    Religion and race had very little to do with the troubles.

    There were parts of Spain that for centuries the Muslims and Catholics lived side by side with no problems.

    No race is not a problem. Racism, nationalism and political power can be.

    I refuse to believe that people cannot live together because of the colour of their skin. Human beings are capable of better than that.

    I believe that the world is fast moving to a time when borders between countries will mean little.

  32. Speaking for myself, I neither condemn nor approve of the natural activities of my acquisitive forebears, because I didn’t walk in their shoes and I’m sure their rationales, like mine, were a product of their time and a particular worldview, which naturally didn’t include genocide or anything like it, ‘cept incidentally; but I’ll make a jolly strong case here and now for why that means that saying Sorry and attempting Reconciliation, symbolically and substantively, is a waste of time, an impossible ideal, proof of hypocrisy, and an absolute frustration to any relational dynamic (of multiculturalism, or otherwise) which might mistakenly extend to include parallel or complementary histories to those naturally told by forebears’ descendants.

  33. Jarl, no one is trying to impose multiculturalism on Australia.

    It is and has been a multicultural country since the first fleet.

    Yes there have been problems. but none that have not been overcome.

    Each new wave concentrated in their own communities until they felt safe to move on.

    Each new wave from different countries and cultures move into to take their place, and these will also in time merge into the wider community.

    I believe and the polls seem to indicate that many are not comfortable with how the current refugees are being treated.

    Onshore processing and quicker movement into the community is supported by a large numbers of Australians.

    Giving land back is impossible, as you well know. What we can do is ensure that all in this country has equal opportunities.

    That means that some need more help than others.

    I believe that many did want to see the Indigenous people disappear.

    Many believed that this would happen, as they had the belief that they were less than human.

    Even today, the Indigenous people are fighting to keep their culture.

  34. Jarl, I find your comments engaging and I thank you for them, however, regardless of multicultural ‘experiments’ around the world and any shame we should or should not feel about the acquisition of Aboriginal land through dispossession, I still maintain the belief that the colonisers of this country were intent on wiping out the Aboriginal race.

    Early policies and ideology reflected this.

    That is the topic I would be most happy to debate.

  35. Catching up = You clearly have little knowledge of English and Irish history and as it was affected by the spread of Roman Catholicism across Europe, mainly by the Spanish and the French (and of Course the Welshman Patrick who took Roman Catholicism to Ireland). Most European wars in the Middle Ages were fought to impose or resist that religion and it was central to the English/Irish wars and invasions. As a matter of interest, the first slaves sent to the Americas by the English were Irish and the `Potato Famine’ did not exist, the English took all of the Irish farm produce for their own purposes and to starve the Irish into submission.

    The British crown has changed hands many times over the centuries because of the religious conflicts and even today, Roman Catholics are not permitted to become British Sovereigns.

    Many Europeans migrated to the Americas to escape religious persecution but tragically have now re-created the problem in that country.

    Religion was also central to most other wars and internal conflicts around the world including Israel/Palestine (for over 2,000 years), Yugoslavia, India/Pakistan, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Iraq/Iran, etc etc. The Muslims and the Spanish did not live peaceably and amicably together but fought over the Iberian Pensinsula for decades. (For a simple insight see the film `El Cid’). I would also suggest you acquaint yourself with the history of Yugoslavia and the Religious based and backed wars which took place across that land and which were fierce and brutal in the extreme.

    It is not about “the colour of their skin”. It is about the entire cultural identity of particular ethnic groups, It is about how indigenous/resident ethnic groups wish to preserve their cultural identity, their belief systems, and their customs and social rites and how incoming immigrants wish to impose their cultural identity on the indigenous/resident group or to isolate themselves in enclaves from the wider society in order to preserve their own cultural identity.

    Catching up = you state, “It is and has been a multicultural country since the first fleet” No it has not. It has largely been two ethnic groups – the indigenous Koori communities and the ethnically European communities. The last thirty years has however seen a major influx of Asian, Arab, and African ethnic groups who have largely maintained a separate existence to the major European population and the Koori population.

    A number of ethnically different groups living separately in one territory does not constitute multi-culturalism. Attempts at assimilation and integration are minimal and at an individual level only.

    The issue of the oppressions of the aboriginal population must start with every individual `owning’ their complicity and contribution to their problems and not simply blaming their predecessors who secured their comfortable lifestyles for them, or the insensitivities of their elected political leaders for the difficulties facing the aboriginal population.

  36. Migs, while there were those who were of the opinion that Aboriginal people were of a lower caste of human being I think that there was a certain attitude of ‘the inevitable’.

    That due to ‘the fact’ that Aboriginals were an inferior variety of the human race that they would inevitably die out. Completely ignorant of the fact that the Aboriginal people have one of the most highly developed systems of spirituality of any peoples.

    Plus if the white fella is so clever how come he never invented the boomerang. 😉

  37. Jarl, you seem very sure of your facts, too many to follow or debate on this thread.

    What about the early Chinese and sub continental arrivals in Australia, who were generally treated as second class, or third, take your pick.

    By the way the film, el Cid couldn’t be said to be factual surely?

  38. Your post is timely with Australia Day coming up.

    I don’t believe in God as such, but it is interesting point you wrote about God favouring the white man and how they set out to do His work.

    I am with you Miglo, I believe the colonists were set out to wipe out the Aboriginal race.

  39. Pip, not 55 Days at Peking either….that was waaaay off the mark.

    Jarl re No it has not. It has largely been two ethnic groups – the indigenous Koori communities and the ethnically European communities. Cu is indeed correct. For example, the Eureka Stockade rebels included at least 3 African Americans.

    And as for the Chinese, I can cite hundreds of interracial marriages occurring in the 19th Century – easy to look up for NSW as the BD&Ms for that state are online.

    And what is racial purity anyway, an example might be the black Irish who are believed to be descendants of Mococcan traders.

  40. Pip – No El Cid was not factually correct but does illustrate the battles and wars which were fought between the Spanish and the Muslim invaders of the Iberian Pensinsula, which you earlier claimed were peaceful and harmonious relationships.
    Min- So a few Afro-Americans and inter-marriages with a few chinese is racial integration and multi-culturalism – hardly. An ethnic identity and culture is not about racial purity so don’t try to introduce those emotive terms along with skin colours etc. In any case the English are probably the most racially impure nation on earth after centuries of invasions and wars, but they do share an ethnic identity and culture with other European countries, despite religious differences and a variety of skin colours.
    Yes the Black Irish were probably descended from early Arab traders (Moors) who travelled widely by ship on such trading expeditions. Similarly there are communities in Spain of peoples with red hair who were probably descended from Scottish and other Celtic traders.
    Min – the `White’ people, as you choose to call them, didn’t invent the `Boomerang’ because they invented the bow and arrows and ultimately the atomic bomb. Such comments about skin colour only exacerbate the problem and are not helpful to understanding differences of ethnic identity.

  41. Jarl, was religion the reason for the troubles or was it a tool used by the ruling elite.

    My view is that religion was a political tool used by those in power.

    In other words, used as excuse to put down and control those who did not agree with them.

    Many leaders actually changed religion when they could not get their own way with the church.

    PS I do not believe in religion and I am not attempting to protect or excuse what has been done in the name of religion.

    Those in power used religion and racial difference to scare people, to enable control, just as for the last decade we have been scared out of our wits by the fear of terrorism.

    The power elite has used this fear to enact new laws that encroach on our freedoms. Demonising the Muslim faith also assists in keeping people at one another’s throat. The more the people are divided, the easier they are to control.

    There are some that say Protestant Religion was created to assist the capitalist state. The Catholic Church no longer fitted in with the new regime of capitalism.

    What needs to happen, to answer Miglo’s question, is to first establish whether the Indigenous people were abuse or misused. Whether many wanted them to disappear or at least be bred out.

    If the answer is yes, we can then look at the reasoning as to why the thought this way.

    We can question the rationalisation they used. We can question their agenda.

    We cannot carry the guilt, we were not there.

    We cannot ignore what happened, we need to at least acknowledge any wrong.

    We can work towards preventing the same thing happening again.

    We can refuse to be racist.

    We can believe that all have the right to live together, no matter the colour of their skin.

    That is all that is being discussed. Did people see the indigenous people less that human and set out to rid themselves of what they seen as a problem.

    At least we can endeavour to have a true understanding of our history, not what some put forwarded, unwilling to accept that bad things happen.

    Bad things has happened throughout history. Too much of this bad was done in the name of religion.

    Much has also been done in the name patronism and nationalism.

    Most has been done for greed and power over another.

  42. Jarl re ‘a few’. There were hundreds of them. I have the Pioneers Indexes for Victoria and even a casual search of common Chinese surnames reveals hundreds of marriages. If you don’t believe me then I recommend that you contact an organisation by the name of: Chinese Australian Family Historians of Victoria.

  43. Catching up = I would not dispute the moral integrity of your arguments or most of your analysis except to say that organised religions and the use of political power were often indivisible. In England for example the Catholic Bishops were also the Military Commanders for large parts of the country and even today they occupy an unelected and privileged position in Parliament. Such powers based in religious beliefs were also apparent during the Witch trials in Europe and the Americas and contained a considerable element of male supremacism, on which the Christian and Muslim religions are largely based.

    We can indeed “refuse to be racist” but we cannot deny the differences in ethnic identity and cultures which are mainly religion based in their beliefs and values, and which have led to immense conflicts and loss of human life as I have illustrated around the world.

  44. Jarl, just as I was saying, religion was used as a tool by the powerful and rich.


    I am sure social class was also used in the same way as well.

    That does not mean that people of different races cannot live together.

    I do not dispute the history. I am saying a different slant can easily be put on it. it is people that make war.

    Back to the post, did early Australians intend that the Indigenous race that inherit this country for over 40 000 years to disappear.

  45. Cu, I agree with you..these so-called Christians acted in anything but a Christian manner. The parable of the Good Samaritan states that people should consider everyone their neighbour and show care for them.

  46. Cu, a subtle twist isn’t it. A differentiation between a intended extinction and an ‘it’s Fate’ attitude.

    The latter one I think was predominant..benign neglect.

    This is not discounting far more overt methods of extermination such as deprivation of food and water sources.

  47. No I don’t accpet that it was a collusive act of intentional genocide. I think it was motivated by collective and individual acquisitiveness and avarice – “You’ve got what we want, and if you stand in our way we are prepared to kill you to get it”. “Even if that results in the total obliteration of your race and culture” (in this case land). A similar situation occurred with the Aztecs, Incas, and Mayans in Central/South America when they resisted the Spanish conquistadors who wanted their gold and other riches for the Spanish Crown and the Vatican, and committed complete genocide of those ethnic communities. Similar also to North America and the near genocide of the Native Americans by Europeans who wanted their lands and in the case of the Inuit in Canada for the same reasons.

  48. Jarl, I agree it might not have been collusive except for the people involved.

    The majority of the people manage to turn a blind eye to the matter.

    It was based on greed and a over blown sense of entitlement.

    There is written proof to support the allegations that many wanted the extinction of these people.

    Some did not stop at murder but others followed the option of breeding them out. Thus we had the mass removal of half caste children.

    This in my belief, existed until very late in the 20C.

    People in the 1950, 60, 70 and 80s had no idea of the plight that faced Indigenous people.

    Most seen them as shiftless, lazy drunks, that deserve the lives they lived.

    Min, we should not forget the poison water holes that was a common occurrence for starters.

  49. Something just reminded me of a line from the James A. Mitchener novel “Hawaii” about the history of the island from when it was first colonised by outcasts from Tahiti, then onto the whalers and traders and then to US missionaries.

    Of the latter group, the line is: They came to Hawaii to do good, and they did right well.

    That is, good intentions soured when it was realized how valuable the black soil of Hawaii was.

  50. What did Frances Galton,Winston Churchill, H. G. Wells, Theodore Roosevelt, George Bernard Shaw, John Maynard Keynes, John Harvey Kellogg, Linus Pauling Sidney Webb, 1922 A.O. Neville, Richard Berry, William Ernest Jones, Kenneth Cunningham and Cecil Cook et al have in common?

    Well they all believed in the ‘science’ of eugenics, defined as:

    … the study of hereditary improvement of the human race by controlled selective breeding


    … a science that deals with the improvement (as by control of human mating) of hereditary qualities of a race or breed


    To understand where Miglo is coming from, it might be useful to check out the histories of the last five and the roles they played in Australia’s policies towards Aborigines and other so called ‘defectives’.

  51. Cu – This must also be seen in a wordlwide historical context. After Christopher Columbus showed in the 15th Century that the earth was not flat and anyone embarking on an ocean-going venture would not fall off the end, several western European countries began a worldwide exploration of other countries in order to exploit their natural resources and increase the riches of those countries. Britain was the foremost followed eagerly by France, Germany, Holland and of course Spain who were the earliest explorers. They invaded countries in Africa, Arabia, Asia, and the Americas and quelled all resistance with military force – so began the British Empire. They even considered China and Japan but met with too strong a resistance. The British slaughtered many thousands of people in India, Pakistan etc as did the other European countries where they met resistance to their acquisitiveness. They realised however that genocide was counter-productive. The indigenous population were useful to trade with, to sell as slaves, for sexual gratification, or as servants and workers. This was the pattern of all invasions whether by military means or colonisation. The British Empire thus extended around the world and nowhere did they commit any act of genocide and it would not have been in their own interests to do so. I do not accept therefore that this was their intention in Australia.

    In any highly industrialised and technological society, anyone who does not work or cannot work is usually seen in dergogatory terms such as “shiftless, lazy drunks”, if that is the image they project in a work-ethic obsessed society, so I don’t think that this particularly or solely applies to the Aboriginal population.

  52. Hopeless, just from memory on this issue but I believe that there was some sort of social experiment on human breeding which earned a dismal fail because nature often seeks to maintain an equilibrium.

    It might have been to do with Hitler’s Germany and a group of tall, blonde types of so-called racial purity went on to produce medium height brunette babies.

  53. Tony does believe in something. He believes he was born to rule this country, and only he has the ability to do so.

    He is so sure of this belief that he also believes he does not have to tell us what he intends to do.

    Like the pope, a role he also considered, he is infallible.

  54. If Eugenics holds any weight and leads to improved human beings, why do so many of the aristocrats have no chins.

    Intelligence seems to be another missing item.

    Why do the children from mix race parents children look so nice. At least mine do.

  55. Good breeding is extremely important. Why else would millions of dollars be spent on racehorses. But its easy with horses where the most desirable qualities are speed and tenacity. The only problem in selective breeding of humans is in deciding the most desirable personality traits. With so many violent or cunning and manipulative psychopaths in our midst from the interbreeding of homo sapiens with the Neanderthals, it would be wisest to eliminate them straight away.

  56. The oppression of the Irish by the English even spilled over into the Australian colonies. Many people may not be ware of this, but the Eureka Stockade wasn’t our first rebellion. That belongs to the Castle Hill Rebellion of 1803, also known as the Irish Rebellion.

    The Irish settlers planned to take over the NSW colony. A French battleship waited off Sydney to join in once Sydney fell.

    The Aborigines weren’t the only people oppressed by the English in this country.

    It was later to include the Chinese and Japanese.

  57. The English Government considered Aborigines as the King’s subjects, along with all the colonists. They were nonetheless not too pleased at the treatment being handed out to the Indigenous subjects by the white colonists. At the insistence of Lord Glenelg, The English Government passed laws which were meant to protect Aborigines. They failed.

    One of the driving forces behind Federation was the idea that without English interference the new government could implement racial policies unhindered. And fittingly, the White Australia Policy was the first enacted by the fledgling country.

  58. That is something that is not widely known, in fact the convicts to Australia are usually assumed to be petty criminals and less savoury types..however many were Irish dissidents, rioters and protestors.

  59. Miglo, have you notice that when wants to take over a country, one first demonise the native people.

    It is if one cannot attack equals.

  60. I find it amazing that it is assumed that the life the natives lived was inferior to that of the white man who invaded their country.

    I have seen no evidence that they were unhappy with their lot.

    Maybe the fact that they have not rushed to take up our lifestyle means something.

    Necessity they say is the mother of invention. Maybe they found no need for the technology of those who came across the seas.

    It would be wrong to say they had no understanding of science or how the world around them worked.

    They had complicated family norms and understood that staying in one place bred illness. The appeared to meet their food and other needs.

    Maybe they did not invent things for the simple reason that they felt no need to change their lifestyle.

    This points I believe to a people who were happy with their lot.

    Now all I have written is only suggestions. I could be wrong and the people were unhappy and miserable, not knowing how to make their lives better.

    I do believe they were one of the few indigenous people that resisted becoming slaves. They were experts at passive resistance.

  61. their rationales, like mine, were a product of their time and a particular worldview

    Spot on! All ‘views’ should be ‘considered’ in their historical context. (No absolute truth). But further statements are more problematic.

    saying Sorry and attempting Reconciliation, symbolically and substantively, is a waste of time …

    Is that the view of a member of the dominant culture? Does it fail to consider what the Aborigines wanted? Surely a small ‘price’ to pay?

    Nevertheless, the most insightful comment on the thread IMHO.

  62. Jarl Ragnvald
    You have brought an unusual intellectual depth to the chatter of the insular tea cup community known as the “whisperers”

  63. Whilst its easy to indulge in an exercise of naval-gazing over teacups regarding the difficulties of the aboriginal community, it is not so easy to find solutions. It seems to me on the one hand that it is a cruel imposition on the aboriginal people to coerce them into adopting the acquisitive values of an industrial society and thereby destroying their unique culture as a latter day `genocide’ by social engineering, One the other hand, should they be helped to retain their nomadic hunter/gatherer lifestyle with the attendant problems of poor health, limited education, and poor living conditions.?. This I feel is the dilemma facing us all in Australia and not least I suspect, the aboriginal peoples themselves. By what criteria do we judge our lifestyles as better than theirs and what right do we have to seek to impose it upon them and in doing so conduct a social genocide.?. We may get a warm fuzzy feeling from embracing their culture, their art and music and religion, into our own but what is that doing to resolve this issue?. It seems to me that it is just exploiting their talents whilst offering little in return. It is not the inhumane `genocide’ of the past that we should be concerning ourselves about, but the social genocide which we are carrying out today.

  64. With thanks to Jan CB for the link:

    My daughter, for example, was saying to me just the other day, very sadly, she doesn’t like Australia Day. She has in the past dressed up, got into the spirit of things, put a sticker on her face, worn the green and gold and been told by drunk Australians to go home because she looks Chinese.

  65. I fully agree with jarls post above, except for this bit.

    It is not the inhumane `genocide’ of the past that we should be concerning ourselves about

    Personally, I am a firm believer that, until you can truly accept the past, you cannot as fully advance into the future.

    I think that that is as pertinent on an individual scale as well as a communal one

  66. Following on from my comment at 6:13 last night, and to add clarity to it; it is documented that early in colonisation the succession of British Governments declared Aborigines their subjects, and as British subjects, were entitled to all the rights of protection, as well as the responsibilities afforded by British law. However the rhetoric of the British Government was to become ineffectual in the Australian colony with an opposing and dominant ideology. To the colonial observer Aborigines were certainly not British subjects. They were perceived as something far less superior.

  67. Jarl, it is interesting that you raise eugenics. Most people would be unaware of the importance it played in the formation of our country and national identity.

    Intellectual fashions in Social Darwinism and eugenics sought to purify and secure a white Australia. The Indigenous population (and what was seen as the hordes of Chinese entering the colony from the 1850s) were perceived as a threat to this ‘purity’. The ideology of Social Darwinism was to become dominant in the public discourse, and that the ideology shaped the White Australia Policy.

    Prior to colonisation, yet amid aggressive imperial expansion, much of the European knowledge of Indigenous people was constructed in their absence. In Australia, as in other colonial frontiers, Europeans imagined the indigenes as the Other and a collective identity was forged through a discourse that set them apart from Europeans. However it is recognised that the discourse of racism does not consist simply in descriptive representations of others. It included a set of hypothetical premises about human kinds (eg the Great Chain of Being and the aforementioned Social Darwinism) and about the differences between them both mental and physical. Such racial ideas went hand in hand with British imperialism and were to be embedded in colonial thought.

  68. Tom, I think Jarl’s reference to inhumane was akin to putting down a horse with a broken leg. Such actions are called humane. Shooting Aborigines was not considered inhumane by the settlers because they were not considered humans.

    I think that’s what he meant. He might let me know.

  69. Jarl re One the other hand, should they be helped to retain their nomadic hunter/gatherer lifestyle with the attendant problems of poor health, limited education, and poor living conditions.?

    My experience is only of my family up in northern Queensland, none of whom are of course nomadic..all gainfully employed, in fact it is granny’s pride and joy that none of her family have ever had a government handout.

    I believe however that those Aboriginals who still live traditionally have far less health issues due to a diet consisting mostly of protein and legumes, which compares with town dwellers where Type 2 diabetes (diet related) is a serious health issue.

  70. Just read the first half of this thread (I have to go out) one of the most interesting for a long, long time (‘scuse the pun) …

    Keep up the good work Jarl … interesting too, that Vikings are still spoken of as a “race” or “tribe” or “nation”… my wife’s ancestors surely went a’viking from Freiseland … as they did fom Denmark and other Northen lands …

    … and for those who think the “vikings” only raped, pillaged, and plundered I suggest you read more history of their exploration and settlement across the WORLD …

    … history is a complex subject from BOTH sides the winners and the losers …

    … multiculturism will/has failed …

  71. Thank you, TB. I think it’s interesting too. :mrgreen:

    Later tonight I hope to add some comments which address eugenics an multiculturalsim in modern England.

    The bag has been opened. The cat is out.

  72. TB-Q = Yes `Vikings’ was probably a collective term for the warriors, explorers, traders, and settlers who spread from all of the Scandinavian countries across Northern Europe, Britain, Greenland, and North America. (long before Amerigo Vespucci and Columbus). They could be described as a `Race’ as they shared similar religions, customs & rites, features (Fair Skin, Blue eyes, blonde hair, athletic build etc). Although the warriors are the best known, the Viking settlers in Northern Europe, Britain etc probably had greater impact and brought agricultural methods and animal husbandry to those lands. (They weren’t countries then). Their major competitors and opponents were the Gauls, from southern Europe and the Britons, Celts, and Picts in Britain, but the Vikings brought a more advanced civilisation to those countries and their settlement in those countries has had an enormous impact worldwide in the centuries since.

  73. Roswell – my meaning of `inhuman was in a wider sense i.e. atrocities committed against other individuals and humankind. Probably the term `inhuman’ may have better described my meaning.

    Min – obviously your family has chosen to adapt your lifestyles to the larger population and its lifestyles and values. Other aboriginals have chosen to retain their existing lifestyles, as far as they are able. Health issues are an interesting subject in regard to the aborigine community. Like in many other countries they had few of the diseases which the invading races had and therefore they had no immune responses to common diseases such as measles, mumps, chicken pox, and STDs etc and those diseases caused many deaths among the aborigines. Many hundreds of aborigine children were killed when the Europeans injected them with measles vaccines.(could this be construed as part of the alleged `genocidal’ intent or were they just being unhelpfully helpful.?). Many of the European diseases were created, fostered, and generated by their lifestyles of living in close proximity to each other and the unhygienic and insanitary conditions in many European cities over several centuries.

  74. Jarl obviously your family has chosen to adapt your lifestyles to the larger population and its lifestyles and values.

    The family would find that comment rather amusing…no, they haven’t “adapted”, they retain their own values.

    You might be interested in this one that I wrote, although I have written at length on indigenous issues mostly from a legal perspective..this was a fun one written with the assistance of my daughter in law and her family.

  75. Min – I would be very interested in what you identify as the different values they have retained and the belief system on which they are based.

    I found the recipe for Dinuguan very interesting. In my youth in Northern England, we killed pigs by similar methods and collected the blood similarly. We then cut of the pig’s head and feet (trotters). halved the body lengthwise and thoroughly salted it and hung it in the pantry for use over many months. (Salt was the preservative in those days but formaldehyde is used now). The blood was poured into shallow trays and cooked in the oven to make Black Pudding (in flat cake form) and the spare pieces were put into the sausages. We didn’t use the modern spices or other flavourings, just the pure taste of the meats etc. Every part of the pig was eaten.

    We prepared rabbits and chickens similarly.
    The packaged stuff from supermarkets just doesn’t taste the same, if there is any taste to it at all.

  76. Thanks for clearing that up for me Jarl. Sometimes when I add two and two together it doesn’t always equal four.

  77. ‘People of Australia’ Ambassadors Revealed

    Forty Australian ‘champions of multiculturalism’ have been selected as People of Australia ambassadors, to help promote multiculturalism and provide feedback to the Federal Government, Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced.

    The diverse group includes doctors, students, community workers, journalists and even an AFL premiership footballer, representing every state and territory in Australia.

  78. Jarl re I would be very interested in what you identify as the different values they have retained and the belief system on which they are based.

    I would say much the same as good folk everwhere. Probably the standout is respect for the elderly, more of a community feel rather than the cult of the individual. And a very excellent sense of humor, especially when confronted with racism. I believe that the respect and the perception of community are based their belief system..all seem to have this wonderful sense of humor, however this could be just this one (extensive) family.

    It was great fun writing that topic with Millie..she was a bit reluctant to include the Dinuguan recipe because she thought that white Australians especially those who rarely if ever have contact/friends who are indigenous might think it all a bit ‘savage’.

  79. Call to recognise ‘first peoples’ in Constitution

    The debate about formally recognising Indigenous Australians in the Constitution is set to flare following the release of recommendations from the expert panel advising the Government on the issue.

    The panel, chaired by former head of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation Patrick Dodson, has set out major changes to the Constitution that would recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people “as the first peoples of Australia”.

  80. Pip, the Australian Constitution was drawn up at a high point of racism when there was mounting pressure for the adoption of a policy that would exclude Aborigines (and non-Europeans). In this environment, it is hardly surprising that Aboriginal people were paid very little attention by the drafters of the Constitution and in fact were effectively excluded from the merging nation. The Commonwealth Constitution had only two minor exclusionary references to Aboriginal people. These references were at section 51 (xxvi):

    The people of any race, other than the Aboriginal race in any State, for whom it is deemed necessary to make special laws

    and section 127:

    In reckoning the numbers of the people of the Commonwealth, Aboriginal natives shall not be counted

    The latter, of course, changed after the 1967 Referndum.

  81. Miglo, as I understand it the special race law you mentioned, Section 51 (xxvi), is to be changed but I haven’t been able to find any more on that yet.

  82. Liberal MP Teresa Gambaro is in damage control.

    ‘Learn English’, federal Liberal MP Teresa Gambaro tells migrants

    IMMIGRANTS need to learn to speak English soon after arriving in Australia to avoid becoming victims of racism, the opposition’s citizenship spokeswoman Teresa Gambaro said today.

    She agreed with neurosurgeon Charlie Teo that racism was alive in Australia but argued it was less prevalent than it once was.

  83. Pip s51 (xxvi) was also changed via the 1967 Referendum to exclude the phrase “other than the Aboriginal race in any State”.

  84. Min, I didn’t catch everything that was said but hopefully someone in the “news” business will write about it !

  85. Jarl, why does one need to adapt their culture to live in a modern society.

    All societies enjoy modern day technologies, or at least those who can afford them.

    That has nothing to do with culture or beliefs.

    Why does one believe they have to remain true to the hunter gather lifestyle to maintain their culture.

    This, in the modern world would be impossible to do.

    I am sure if you take the time to read, many of these people have manage to keep their culture while using modern technology to care and protect their land, as they have done for centuries.

    Yes, they have adapted to modern living, as has everyone else, regardless of race.

    The difference is that they had to do it faster than others.

    They had no choice as they lost the land that their lifestyle was based on.

    Noticed I said lifestyle not culture.

  86. “Liberal MP Teresa Gambaro is in damage control.”

    Does this lady live back in the 1950 and 60’s. I have not heard this tripe since then.

    It was then aimed and Italians and Greeks along with Maltese if my memory is correct.

  87. Cu, I thought that I would go and have a look for that one..

    IMMIGRANTS need to learn to speak English soon after arriving in Australia to avoid becoming victims of racism, the opposition’s citizenship spokeswoman Teresa Gambaro said today.

    Therefore, colored migrants who speak with a Cambridge accent will never be discriminated against..because it’s not a person’s color or racial characteristics which is a trigger for racist comments, it’s their lack knowledge of English.

    Teresa..on which planet have you been living…

  88. Min,

    Push to recognise indigenous Australians in constitution

    It recommended inserting a new section (51A) to recognise that “the continent and its islands now known as Australia were first occupied by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”

    The new section will also acknowledge the continuing relationship of indigenous people with their traditional lands and waters.

    It will also respect the continuing cultures, languages and heritage of indigenous people and acknowledge the need to secure their advancement.

    The expert panel also called for new section (116A) to prohibit racial discrimination.


    The panel also proposes a new section (127A) stating the national language of Australia is English while recognising that “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages are the original Australian languages, a part of our national heritage.”

  89. Cu = I find your comments very much in the same vein as Teresa Gambaro’s and are clearly based on a similar set of assumptions. There isn’t space in these columns to explain to you the inter-relationship between ethnic identity, lifestyle, and culture so I do not propose to do so. You are describing precisely many of the aspects of my meaning of social `genocide’ of the aboriginal peoples.

  90. Jarl, would you care to provide some specifics regarding your statement “a similar set of assumptions”.

    Gambaro stated a specific requirement whereas Cu expressed her opinion.

  91. Star wars: Lucas quits blockbusters over ‘all-black’ movie snub

    George Lucas has said he is retiring from making blockbusters after claiming that Hollywood refused to fund his latest movie because it has a black cast.

    Lucas, 67, said: ‘‘I figured if I could get the prints and ads paid for by the studios that they would release it. I showed it to all of them and they said, ’No. We don’t know how to market a movie like this.’

    ‘‘It’s because it’s an all-black movie. There’s no major white roles in it at all. It’s one of the first all-black action pictures ever made.

  92. Current Poll
    Should the Australian constitution be changed to formally recognise Indigenous Australians 'as the first peoples of Australia'?

    Yes 64%
    No 36%

    132 votes counted

    36% polled disagree with these changes to the Constitution….why??

    Still that’s only about 47 who disagree…so far.

  93. Pip, now 406 votes counted..unfortunately Yes now has dropped to 62%.

    But still, when you consider that many will say No to everything which the government does..for the sole reason that it’s a Labor government, I think that anything over 60% are respectable numbers.

  94. “There isn’t space in these columns to explain to you the inter-relationship between ethnic identity, lifestyle, and culture so I do not propose to do so”. You are describing precisely many of the aspects of my meaning of social `genocide’ of the aboriginal peoples.”

    I am at a little loss as to what you are getting at.

    I was only saying that the MP’s comments were a little old fashion.

    I was not making a comment on whether migrants are responsible for being be treated in a racist manner.

    My belief is that there is as little truth in the allegations today, as it was the case 50 years ago.

    Migrants hygiene practices and their inability to learn English are little more than urban myths. This is not an assumption. This is what I have observed during my seventy years.

    I am sure the doctor’s daughter’s English is very good. She has complained of being treated in a racist way.

    It is not on to blame the victims of racist people.

    Racism is just not on.

    During my lifetime, I have resided in areas that attract great numbers of migrants. As a child, I spent much time staying in the vicinity of Bunnerong Migrant Hostel. Later I lived in the Guildford area and worked next to the Villawood Hostel. I later moved to Cabramatta.

    This meant I had close contact with the Post war wave, the Vietnam, and those from the Middle East.

    Yes, I worked with, lived among, and had many friends from the migrant community.
    There some I have not liked, but none because of their race.

    I worked mostly in environments where the majority of workers where migrants.

    I have never come across many that were not willing to learn English. Yes, many of the older mothers and some fathers found it hard. Those who needed the language skills quickly acquired them.

    These are opinions I have acquired over a lifetime. They could be correct, they could be wrong. I suspect what I say is nearer the truth than the good MP.

    “ inter-relationship between ethnic identity, lifestyle, and culture. You are describing precisely many of the aspects of my meaning of social `genocide’ of the aboriginal peoples.”

    I am not sure what you are getting at.
    I do not quite understand, in spite of having a Social Science Degree.

    Of course, there has to be some outcomes from inter-relationships between all facets of our lives.
    This makes us who we are.
    How does this relate to social genocide? Exactly what do you mean by social genocide in this context?
    Are you saying that there was no other possible outcome for the Indigenous people once the invaders came?
    Are you saying that the people who moved into their lands had no effect on how their lives changed?
    Are you saying, because of their culture, they were a doomed people? That nothing could save them. In other words, it was just bad luck.

    Are you saying that if I move from the Western Suburbs of Sydney to the urban Central Coast by the sea, that my culture and beliefs would change? Are you saying if as I did, moved from manual work, to a professional role, I would be a different person with a different culture?

    Are you saying I cannot remain the person I believe myself to be, no matter were I worked or lived.

    Are you saying if I went and lived in the Territory on a remote community, I could not trabsfer my culture?

    I am not sure where you are coming from or what you are trying to prove.

  95. PS:

    All cultures change over time and place. No culture is set in stone.

    Ask any migrant that returns to the old country after 15 or 20 years.

  96. Jarl why is it necessary to judge the lifestyle of Indigenous people. Why compare one with another.

    Why do you say that they have to choose between our life and theirs.

    That they are choosing to remain hunter gathers. I think that is what you are saying.

    I believe it is more like people choosing to live on the land they have for generations.

    I think that they also want homes and what goes with modern society.

    Many want the benefits of an education and the options to go with it.

    They will do as all others have done, adapt their culture to fit in with today’s lifestyle.

    There is no need for any more choice, than I might make to enter an nursing home when the time comes.

    It is up to making choices. Choices that only they have th right to make.

    I have never heard of an Indigenous person that said that they want to revert back to being hunter gathers.

    I still do not know what you mean by social genocide.

    I believe what they want most is for their culture to be accepted and respected. Not much to ask.

  97. Jarl, I think I have worked out what social genocide means. It could mean the death of a culture or society.

    I think that we are talking about much more than that.

    I believe we are talking about a death of a whole race.

    If that is the case, we are talking at cross purposes.

  98. I believe what they want most is for their culture to be accepted and respected.

    A bit naive, methinks, CU … the young folk up in Weipa and in the cities, expect much more than that … not sure about other communities …

    … but one thing that always stands out for me is the patronising “goody two shoes – colonial thinking” white folk, who molly coddle both Aboriginal and PNG Nationals … particularly those with a religious “bent” … in my experience … what the Aboriginal communities I’ve worked with really want – are opportunities …

    BTW, didn’t Kevin Rudd – “apologise” … ?

  99. TB, I agree absolutely. And opportunities can only be had when there is a level playing field..provide the teachers, the laptops (essential for any child’s education these days), and the basics such as sanitation.

    This has been touched on previously on one of Migs’ other topics but something that is also needed is a change of attitude..many and this includes teachers, still have the expectation that indigenous kids will not go on with their education. And we all know that when little is expected of kids, that they will perform to expectation.

  100. Kevin Rudd aplogised to the Stolen Generation. Many of those people are still alive.

    I don’t think we can aplogise for atrocities that pre date the Stolen Generation. I don’t think we need to. That part of our history is too far in the past and not our fault.

  101. A contemporary argument about cultural difference and a preference for one’s own kind is central in debates about immigration and national identity. Explicit in the debate is a denial of biological superiority, and therefore, a denial of racism. This itself is a form of racist ideology.

    This is the defining features of what is termed the ‘new racism’ where there is a replacement of biological models and racial hierarchies with an emphasis on ethnically based nationalism. Rather than a declaration of one’s own culture or country superior to others, we see references to natural or instinctive separation and suspicion. As such, immigrants are not exposed as being racially inferior, but rather their cultures and values are identified as the threats to a homogenous society.

    With Britain being peacefully ‘invaded’ by unassimilable populations, it was a theory that was articulated within political arguments and fuelled and legitimised strict immigration controls.

    The new racism manifested in political Britain in the late 1960s and the 1970s. Enoch Powell was a prominent and vociferous critic of coloured immigration – and imported cultures – and emphasised the racial barriers between ‘us’ and ‘them’. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, a decade later, also spoke publicly about the fears of the British way of life being swamped by immigrants.

    The new racism rose to prominence in capitalist societies in the wake of large-scale labour migrations and rising unemployment. By the mid 1980s, signalled by the so-called Blainey debates incorporating attacks on ‘Asian’ migration this new racism entered Australia’s discourse. Social cohesiveness, employment and harmony within the Australian community, it was argued, would be jeopardised by the size and composition of the migrant intake.

    Although the ideologies of old and new racism were built on distinct, separate arguments, there are identifiable similarities between them. New racism, per se, is merely old racism re-labelled, and both ideologies advocate the separation of social groups in the interests of social harmony.

  102. As such, immigrants are not exposed as being racially inferior, but rather their cultures and values are identified as the threats to a homogenous society.

    Thereby avoiding anti-discrimination legislation due to the fact that it is not overt attack but rather is expressed as a concern about multiculturalism.

  103. “about cultural difference and a preference for one’s own kind is central in debates about immigration and national identity”

    Miglo if that is true, why do I enjoy my family get togethers so much.

    I find it exciting to hear others from different races talking about their childhood and their culture.

    I love the food they all bring.

    The grandparents from all races seem to thing the grand kids are just it.

    I still do not care what anyone thinks, it is racism that is the problem, not multicultural.

    Why people find problems with this is beyond me. The only conclusion I can come to, is that many believe themselves and cultures to be superior.

    The truth there is more that races share than divide them.

  104. Cu, I was referring to new racism on national scales, such as is seen in England and attempted here by the likes of Hanson and Howard.

  105. “Thatcher, a decade later, also spoke publicly about the fears of the British way of life being swamped by immigrants”

    The problem with this argument, is that ways of life are not set in stone.

    The social norms are in continual flux, and this is the way it should be.

    Otherwise we would be living our lives the same way as they did two hundred years ago in this country.

    To sum up what I am trying to say, my mother born 1907 used to say this about her mother.

    My mother said her mother would not go out the door without hat, gloves, corsets and stockings.

    My mother would not leave the house without corsets and stockings. She abandon the hat and gloves, except for dress up occasions.

    Pants and shorts were still accepted.

    My mother died in 1958 but was already amazed that stocking and corsets had been abandoned and anything went when one went out.

    I hate to think what she would think of young ones today.

    Now I know this is only clothes but believe me, they formed the foundation of our culture through the ages. They represented many of the values of the time.

    I think it is wonderful that one can now wear what they like. I also think it is good that we no longer have to go to church.

    Some of the big changes in the Indigenous communities is the effort to bring art to the forefront. Dance and art are now an important part of the culture.

    I am assuming these would have had a different used in the traditional society, but are still an important part of the culture today.

  106. I understand, the changes that Mr. Howard bought to this country takes us back to the dark ages as far as I am concerned.

    I also believe that we must acknowledge racism for what it is.

    Yes, it does exist in all nationalities. So does the love of war, envy and many other traits that we try to overcome.

    What frightens me is that the number of people who cannot accept the fact and do everything to justify the behaviour by blaming it on multiculturalism and other causes..

    Why? It is just a fact of life. Humans are not perfect.

    The funny thing is that they have to demonise the race they want to attack. They have to ignore facts and generalise the misbehaviour of a very few to all. Most will say their next door neighbour is different, when they do not fit the mould.

    Like all refugee seekers are not fleeing from danger but are only seeking a better life. They become economic refugees.

  107. Cu “The funny thing is that they have to demonise the race they want to attack.”

    And for ever more it shall be so. It’s war’s rallying cry. Wars are almost always fought for economic reasons, greed for territory and it’s resources and a lust for power. However never was there a war fought that did not utilize hatred of ‘the other’ to rally and inflame people’s emotions, that the war would be acceptable to the masses.

    WW2 it was the Jews, Iraq it was the Muslims.

  108. WW2 it was the Jews, Iraq it was the Muslims.

    I beg to differ … but then I’d be copying and pasting for months …

    Let’s just say that most conflicts are for religious control, ethnic power and/or resource expansion …

    Adolf Hitler had an expansionist dream but believed (as many do today) that the Jews were behind Communism and anarchy and controlled much of the global wealth … there is an industrial relations “theory” that was/is? taught in universities that to control a workplace one might consider creating a problem (chaos) in order to control it … a tactic still used in management/union conflicts …

    Iraq was all about oil … and profits from the peripherals of war …

    As I’ve stated elsewhere and here, on a number of occasions … with the present state of the global economy (we have never recovered from the GFC) look for nationalisation** (ie trade restrictions within borders, sabre rattling) and those nations who are contemplating “expansion” … and read your history … 1929 to 1939 is a good start but 1890 to 1929 will give you a better insight into how modern history repeats itself … ad nauseum …

    ** … one of the fears of the breakup of the EU …

    The Doomsday Clock

    The lower the graph becomes, the higher the probability of catastrophe is deemed to be

  109. TB, I agree with everything you say. In fact I think that we’re saying the same thing differently. 😉

    I said:

    Wars are almost always fought for economic reasons, greed for territory and it’s resources and a lust for power. However never was there a war fought that did not utilize hatred of ‘the other’ to rally and inflame people’s emotions,

    And this is where propaganda enters the equation. And of course the allies used identical tacts.

    An example of WW2 propaganda is:

    Propaganda is always a generalisation of particular traits ascribed to various ethnic groups so as to instil a fear and/or hatred of ‘the other’. Many people still view the Aboriginal people as being a particular type (also covered in one of Migs’ earlier topics) due to having a ‘picture’ of what an Aboriginal is based on previous decades of images ingrained via this method.

    Of course when a person is ascribed the traits of evil etc then it is much easier to justify actions against that person or group.

  110. Yes TB, I believe we are all very much in agreement.

    It is only being said that when one wants to launch a war, the people you are attacking need to be seen as demons.

    We are not saying the people are the reason for the war. We not talking, or at least I am not, about the cause of the war but how racism and demonising a nation and it”s people is necessary.

    Of course oil was the one and only reason we had the Iraq war. It this was admitted at the time, there would have little public support.

    If Hitler had given his reasons and not demonise the Jews, the result would have likely been no war.

    Most wars are about a lust for power and money.

  111. With thanks to Bob Gosford for the link to his article,

    The slow death of Aboriginal Research? AIATSIS suspends research grants…

    Fine words and noble ambitions that AIATSIS has strived to fulfill over the past 50 or so years. From my own research on Aboriginal bird knowledge I found the resources in the AIATSIS library and archives an great source of information and inspiration.

    But more than a few in the fields of research – anthropology, linguistics, law and archaeology – central to the very fine work that AIATSIS has sponsored over the years are dismayed at this recent announcement in the AIATSIS Grants page:

  112. Pingback: tatuaggi

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