Allan Tranter from Creating Communities joins The Breakfast Show, continuing the reconciliation journey. (Allan apologises for any errors in the culture he may make as he is non-indigenous .. and says can’t possibly understand what it is really like.)
Start with yourself:
When you think something, say something, do something – especially if it is negative about someone else, ask yourself ‘how did I get to that point? What from my past has shaped me to believe that and act like that? What does that mean my values truly are?’
The more we understand ourselves and realise who we are the more we can grow to like ourselves. Then we can become reconciled to who we are.
We’ve spoken about our migrant ancestors, today’s migrants (some of whom are refugees). Last week we spoke about the traditional owners of our country and their highly sophisticated society and culture, their relationship to the land. We discussed how important it is for each of us today to treat with great respect elders past and present and those that are emerging.
Over the next few weeks, we’re going to focus on some of the things that have shaped some or many of our First Nations people. The things that continue to influence them. So we can better understand their situation today.
“A good start is having a look at the Education Supplement in the Sunday paper: Coming together … Part 1 – Rights, resistance and reconciliation. It contains information which is vital for us all to understand. How Europeans just “took” over another country if it wasn’t occupied by other Europeans and called it “terra nullius” – belonging to no-one. Yet the Aboriginal people had been here! Captain Cook knew the land was occupied .. but “they” weren’t Europeans .. so they did not matter!”
Imagine if another skin colour group of people came to Australia today and said ..’all you people who live in this country don’t matter, because you are not like us!’ what a revolt there would be.
“Terra Nullius” was overturned in 1992 with what is called the “Mabo case” where the High Court said it should not have been applied to Australia because it was already occupied by a people that did matter.
And yes there was opposition. There were massacres of Aboriginal people. Not only battles but massacres of unarmed women and children. There were an estimated 6,000 Aboriginal people hunted and killed in Tasmania, yes hunted down. It occurred it WA too.
There was another opposition too. People fighting for what was right. We’ll talk more about that next time.
But for today, get to understand the truth about our amazing First Nations people. Start to respect their stunning culture. Their deep connection to this land. Begin to understand what has happened since European settlement that has created what we have today. Reconciliation continues.