Today is the day that white Australians celebrate their take-over of a continent that had been inhabited by people whose resilient culture had endured for more than fifty-thousand years. Australia is an inhospitable place and the invading British were frequently kept from dying of starvation by the generosity of the indigenous people.
We celebrate that when the British felt secure, they then started evicting the locals, and when they objected, the British government made a declaration that Australia was completely uninhabited when they arrived, therefore the British had the absolute right to take whatever land and resources they wanted.
Consequently, whenever an indigenous person complained, they were killed. Entire communities were uprooted and driven from their land, massacred, starved, poisoned like vermin, imprisoned and forced into slave labour, raped and left for dead. When the demoralised indigenous people were reduced to a rump of starving wretched souls living on the refuse heaps of towns, forbidden to live in decent houses or within the town limits, they were grudgingly offered work as cowboys on the vast sheep and cattle ‘stations’ now occupying their land. But they were not to be paid. Food and a vile hovel for shelter was all they got while the landowners and the British became ever richer.
Any groups who complained had their children stolen to become slaves in white houses. No records were kept because they didn’t legally exist and were not counted in the Census, had no identification, no validity and were not legally Australians.
Then in 1967 a referendum was held asking the people if the indigenous people were human, and could therefore be allowed to become Australian citizens. It passed, but not unanimously, but little has changed. An indigenous orphan boy of 12 who steals a chocolate bar will get life imprisonment. It mat start off as incarceration in a boy’s prison, but that is effectively the end, after years of brutalisation, prison is the only place he knows because there are no jobs for ‘blacks’ . If an indigenous girl doesn’t pay her parking tickets, she goes to prison where, if she gets sick she will probably die because of the racism of guards and hospital staff. If any other Australian commits the identical ‘crime’ they won’t even get a slap on the wrist.
We are celebrating that indigenous people do not share our excellent Medicare health coverage, they have an odd system that provides little except profits for the whites who run it. We celebrate their continued neglect and the institutionalised racism in all mass media, as well as by most politicians and political parties, Law Courts, law enforcement, education, health and welfare. We celebrate that after more than 200 years, an indigenous man’s life expectancy is roughly half of the rest of Australians, and he is more likely than not to spend half his life in jail, where he has a very large chance of dying.