The news cycle over the weekend has been dominated by stories of protests in America, centering on the death of George Floyd in custody. Meanwhile, there are growing stories of similar events happening in Australia, and now more than ever there is discussion about the treatment of Indigenous Australians. To help us understand this from an indigenous perspective, musician and aboriginal educator Scott Darlow joined Jeziel on Drive.
Scott explained that it’s unfortunately all too easy to draw a parallel between what’s happening in America, and what happens here. Perhaps more unfortunately, it’s nothing new. In the last 30 years, over 400 Indigenous people have died in police custody. And while it’s easy for us to maybe make a post on social media, or to sign a petition, often that’s where it ends.
As Scott explains, a primary reason for this attitude is a lack of education. Here’s an example he uses when he speaks at high schools. Who is the man on the American $1 bill?
A lot of you may know it’s George Washington. Now, who’s the man on the Australian $50 bill?
If you know it, well done. However, a lot of us won’t. It’s David Unaipon, accomplished Aboriginal preacher, author, and inventor of the modern sheep shears.
So if you’re sitting there thinking “you know what, I do want to know more”, you can check out Australians Together. As a non-profit, they aim to teach us all where we’ve come from, where we are, and where we’re going. Scott also mentioned a great book he’s reading, Aboriginal Heroes, telling the stories of several great Aboriginal Australians. Most importantly, be proactive in your education.
You can also support various charities that help Indigenous people. The David Wirrpanda Foundation for example, does amazing work helping Aboriginal people get an education and gain employment.
Perhaps most importantly, is to start the conversation young. Talk to your children. Explain what’s happening, why it’s happening, and what should happen. You don’t have to go into the gory details, but it’s important they understand.
To hear all of Scott’s chat with Jeziel, check out the podcast below: