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Category Archives: Indigenous affairs
His thought bubble about inaugurating a public holiday – well, perhaps not a holiday, but something or other – to celebrate indigenous Australia is about to be shoveled into the back drawer. That’s the one where the former Treasurer keeps … Continue reading
The real ‘settler’ and pioneering stories of Feilberg’s Queensland were confronting and frightening.
LYNLEY WALLIS, BRYCE BARKER, HEATHER BURKE. How unearthing Queensland’s ‘native police’ camps gives us a window onto colonial violence.
In 19th century Queensland, the Native Mounted Police were responsible for “dispersing” (a euphemism for systematic killing) Aboriginal people.
US slave owners wrote and spoke about liberty, equality and the pursuit of happiness. Similar hypocrisy, buried in the foundations of settler Australia, has escaped comparable scrutiny.
For ten years our political leaders have talked about closing the gap. The harsh reality is that the gap in disadvantage suffered by indigenous Australians fails to close. Worse, there has been little discussion about why the gaps do not … Continue reading
As an Australian schoolchild I learnt the history of England, including a long list of English Kings, but nothing at all about the Frontier Wars here in Australia or indeed the history of our Indigenous, the oldest people on the … Continue reading
STEPHEN DUCKETT. Time to name and call out unconscious racism in the treatment of Indigenous Australians.
Indigenous Australians suffer racism when they seek or require medical treatment. The good news is that the medical profession acknowledges there is a problem. The bad news is that doctors are not doing nearly enough to bust the systemic bias … Continue reading
Last Tuesday marked 90 years since the last recorded massacre of Aboriginal people in Australia.
In this Q&A, former senior bureaucrat Michael Dillon offers some very thoughtful insights into the last several decades of Indigenous policy-making and the role of historical knowledge in the policy process.
RICHARD FLANAGAN. The world is being undone before us. If we do not reimagine Australia, we will be undone too
In the full transcript of his speech to the Garma festival, the author says the country can make itself stronger by saying yes to the Uluru statement
Some ninety-odd years ago this week was born in the bush in the rugged far north-west of Western Australia a child given the Christian name of David.
It may be sheer fantasy, wishful thinking. But in the last week the torpor of politics appeared to lift a little; there were signs that progress might not be stalled forever in the coalition party room in Canberra. Not that … Continue reading
Funeral Homily for Barrie Dexter CBE. Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture, 26 April 2018. Listen on SoundCloud [commencing at 2:00] In Australia, there have been many children of the manse who have gone on to be great contributors to … Continue reading
Conservatives and militarists want us to cling to a disastrous imperial war. Such a war could never be ‘nation building’ as the apologists for empire suggest. It was quite the reverse.The Anzac myth makers encourage us to focus on how … Continue reading
We should, of course, question these things more. We could ask why – if we were actually genuine about remembering patriots who have died for this country – why would we not first spend $100m on a museum honouring the … Continue reading
On Friday the Director of the Australian War Memorial Brendan Nelson announced plans for a massive redevelopment of the institution which would cost up to $500 million.He hoped to receive the required funding in next year’s budget and he is … Continue reading
The reports and narratives around the strategy to close the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians are quite well-known, if only because they don’t change much from year to year. With the possible exception of education, not many targets are … Continue reading
Warning signs were emerging many decades before, but by the early part of this century it was obvious that the health of indigenous Australians was much worse than that of other citizens. Indicators such as high infant mortality, widespread malnutrition … Continue reading
Today we mark the tenth anniversary of the National Apology. All of us remember where we were that day when Prime Minister Kevin Rudd read the words of the parliamentary motion moved by him and seconded by Brendan Nelson, the … Continue reading
There were angry rumblings at last week’s meeting of Indigenous leaders and the Prime Minister and in the Close the Gap Campaign Steering Committee Report. They will get significantly louder with today’s release of the 10th Annual Closing the Gap Report.
Ode to Australia Day (In tribute to the late John Hirst and his masterpieces Freedom on the Fatal Shore) The heroes of famed Waterloo Or great Nelson’s mighty crew, If chance had gone a different way, Might well have peopled … Continue reading
The release by Newcastle University’s Centre for 21st Century Humanities of a map of colonial frontier massacres has attracted a burst of media attention. It draws national interest back to those questions that were highlighted during the history wars of … Continue reading
Part 1 of this two-part post provided a global and broad Australian perspective on the pandemic of overweight and obesity. This part sets out the position for indigenous Australians and argues that this pandemic is a significant part of the … Continue reading
In part 1 of this two-part post Michael Lambert sets out the broad position on overweight and obesity as both a global development and the Australian situation, the costs involved and the case for national action . The second part … Continue reading
Two weeks ago, Australia was chosen as one of two new member nations on the UN Human Rights Council (HRC). Before one gets too excited about this achievement it is worth noting that our country’s election was uncontested. There were three … Continue reading
As my Dad, “Nugget” Coombs, said in his Boyer Lectures years ago, though still ringing true, we are all demeaned by our treatment of our aboriginal people. Even back then, he implored our leaders to consult with, listen to and … Continue reading
The controversy about confederate monuments in the southern states erupted in May this year while I was in the United States. I was impressed by the extent and the vigour of the debate. In the back of my mind I … Continue reading
So we have the anomalous situation of a projected citizenship test which large numbers of indigenous people could not pass.
For months we have had to endure war on all fronts – the class war, the gender war, the religion war, the equality war, the war on poverty, the war on drugs, the war against political correctness, the war on … Continue reading
FREYA HIGGINS DESBIOLLES. The politics of public monuments: It’s time Australians looked at what, and whom, we commemorate
Recent events in the US have seen Confederate Civil War monuments pulled down and painful histories revisited. Comparing these acts to those of the Islamic State terror group, Spiked editor Brendan O’Neill evocatively called this an “Orwellian war on history” … Continue reading