Don’t be too quick to ‘Recognise’

So-called “indigenous recognition” is just another political ploy—a route to assimilation and equalising of the cultures and minimising any chance of acknowledgement of Sovereignty of the Aboriginals of Australia … and of course putting the matter of the illegality of the Colonial take-over in the 1st place to rest, without consultative Treaties being in place. Aboriginal rights and legitimacy will be “dead in the water”— finally “white-washed” and watered-down, as are many so-called “Aboriginals” these days.

anti-recognise

Also for further reading see/read here…

About Letters Patent re Sth Australia

The result of a long campaign by those who wished to establish a colony according to the principles of systematic colonisation, the South Australia Act of 1834 empowered the King to erect South Australia into one or more British Provinces, and to provide for its colonisation and government.  The preamble to the Act included a description of the lands on which such Provinces were to be erected as ‘waste and unoccupied Lands, which are supposed to be fit for the Purposes of Colonization’.

A period of intense negotiation followed between those planning to establish the Province of South Australia and the Colonial Office, which administered Britain’s colonies.  One of the topics under discussion was provisions for the Aboriginal inhabitants, particularly in relation to their proprietary rights to land, rights which those in the Colonial Office believed were beyond dispute. The Colonization Commissioners, seeking to establish the Province, disputed that such rights would be found to exist, believing that Aboriginal people did not ‘occupy’ the land in a way that would be recognised by British institutions.GRG2_64_0_1_1_img001

Negotiations between the Commissioners and the Colonial Office continued. Finally, when the Letters Patent establishing the Province were signed on 19 February, 1836, they included the clause:

Provided always, that nothing in these our letters patent contained shall affect or be construed to affect the rights of any Aboriginal Natives of the said Province to the actual occupation or enjoyment in their own Persons or in the Persons of their Descendants of any Lands therein now actually occupied or enjoyed by such Natives.

The first of the South Australian Company’s ships, the John Pirie, set sail for South Australia just three days later.

In 1838 the South Australia Act was amended, and wording conforming to (and referring to) the Letters Patent was inserted.

Colonisation of the new province of South Australia proceeded with little regard for the words of the Letters Patent relating to Aboriginal rights to land. In 2011, the Letters Patent are again the source of discussion and controversy as the significance and legal meaning of the document are debated.

Source: Bound For South Australia

 Also view…

Cultural Respect, maybe

“The term ‘cultural respect’ refers to the recognition, protection and continued advancement of the inherent rights, cultures and traditions of Aboriginal people. Cultural respect is achieved when cultural differences are respected.”

Source: Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council (2004): Cultural Respect Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health 2004-2009 p. 7

IMO: It’s a pity that many in the Aboriginal affairs arena, know the talk, but rarely, if at all put it into practise!

Govt to Shutdown Aboriginal Settlements

This is an earlier news story that I’ve rescued for the record. Much of this has already transpired since the time it was written:

Australia: Labor moves to shut down remote Aboriginal settlements

By Susan Allan, 27 June 2009

The federal and Northern Territory (NT) Labor governments last month unveiled a series of free-market measures that will deepen the poverty and suffering in indigenous communities.

Working Future [another economic driven ploy to disintegrate Aboriginal spiritual culture] announced by the NT government on May 20, seeks, under the auspices of the federal government’s NT intervention, to force the estimated 10,000 Aboriginal people living in some 580 remote “homeland” settlements into 20 special settlements or so-called “economic hubs”. The homeland communities have been defined as “non-viable”.

Echoing both the former Howard government, and the current Labor government, which has adopted Howard’s 2007 police-military intervention as its own, NT chief minister Paul Henderson claimed that his government would end “indigenous disadvantage” by creating “reservoirs of opportunity” in the 20 hub towns.

In reality, Working Future is aimed at clearing the way for mining, pastoral and tourism interests at the direct expense of Aboriginal [culture and way of life] communities. The policy flows directly from the Rudd government’s earlier decision to prioritise 26 indigenous communities across the country for new housing and infrastructure, marking a drive to shut down many settlements.

The homeland or “outstations” movement emerged in the 1970s when small groups of Aboriginal people began establishing settlements on traditional lands in an attempt to escape the social dysfunction, alcoholism and substance abuse prevalent in many camps on the fringes of larger towns. Recognising that this movement could be utilised to ease social tensions and isolate indigenous people from the working class, federal governments granted the settlements minimal funding for basic dwellings.

The NT government will now freeze funding for existing settlements at $36 million and axe grants to homelands not occupied for more than eight months of the year. Homeland residents requiring regular access to health, education and other basic social services will have little option but to leave [and not just their homes].

While the NT government claims it will provide transport to pre-school, primary and secondary schools in the hub towns, scores of remote homeland schools are expected to close. Students who live further away from the hubs will be sent to boarding schools or hostels. The already overcrowded and grossly under-resourced settlements defined as “hubs” will be funded by a miniscule $160 million grant over the next five years. This represents just over $1.5 million per year for each community, nowhere near enough to provide the social facilities required for the anticipated influx of people.

Henderson declared that the hubs would be successful only “if private businesses can get secure tenure on Aboriginal land” [another ploy and condition to over-ride custodial & traditional rights to land]. Private investors, he said, would be given security of land tenure and generous tax incentives. All of the hubs are located on traditional Aboriginal lands and government funding is conditional [economic blackmail, no less] on traditional owners and land councils signing long-term leases in favour of the territory government. The hubs will be run by business managers previously installed under the Howard government’s intervention.

Federal indigenous affairs minister Jenny Macklin [yeh right!] congratulated the NT government for driving “fundamental reform” and then announced that the Rudd government would compulsorily acquire 15 town camps on the fringes of the central Australian city of Alice Springs . Currently managed by Tangentyere Council, a local Aboriginal body, the camps are home to about 2,000 indigenous residents. The camps’ average home occupancy rate is 10 people.

Macklin ordered the acquisition because Tangentyere Council refused to sign over a 40-year lease to the government in exchange for federal funds for new houses, repair and maintenance of existing dwellings, road upgrades and some infrastructure. Decades of government under-funding have ensured that basic social services are largely non-existent in the town camps.

Labor’s acquisition of the camps sends a clear message to Aboriginal communities, including those in the “economic hubs”, that they will receive similar treatment unless they conform to government dictates. [is this another example of Reconciliation on the dominant cultures terms?] Macklin declared the acquisition was not temporary or under a 40-year lease, but “forever”.

Tangentyere rejected similar lease demands from the Howard government in 2006, when residents feared their rents would be raised beyond their capacity to pay and they could face eviction. These concerns increased in February this year when Macklin directed state and territory housing ministers not to spend federal funds on public housing in remote Aboriginal communities until “tenancy management reforms” were implemented.

Major mining, agribusiness and tourist corporations have long demanded unrestricted access to Aboriginal land, an end to communal ownership and a ready supply of cheap labour.

The move to disperse homeland settlements replicates proposals elaborated in 2007 by Helen Hughes from the Centre for Independent Studies, a right-wing free-market think tank. Hughes’s book Lands of Shame called for drastic cuts to Aboriginal social welfare and an end to all government funding of so-called unviable homelands.

Announcing Working Future last month, NT indigenous affairs minister Alison Anderson told the media the government could not “put infrastructure in every community” and previous attempts to “fill gaps with money” had “failed and will continue to fail”. Homeland residents would be taken “out of the welfare cycle” and would “have to get used to it”.

The fraud of the Rudd government’s 2008 parliamentary apology to Aboriginal people for past injustices could not be clearer. Just over a year after officially expressing regret for the removal of previous generations of indigenous children from their families, the Labor government and its NT counterpart are embarking on a program of herding entire communities off their traditional lands.

Working Future has encountered opposition from NT Aboriginal communities, legal rights organisations and medical academics. Many fear that dislocation from the remote homelands will produce more homelessness, petrol sniffing, alcoholism and other social problems.

The Laynhapuy Homelands Association, which manages outstations in Arnhem Land, denounced Working Future as another crime against Australia ’s indigenous population [Aboriginals will do, thanks]. Association official Waturr Gumana told ABC radio: “The stolen generations—this is happening again. People are going to be taken out of their homes and we know what they are doing. The government only wants the dollars from our land. And our kids, our people who will be taken back to the main communities … history is going to repeat itself.”

The Barkly Shire Council, which is directly responsible for maintaining 26 of the 89 small communities within its area, said it could not provide basic services to outstations with capped funding. The council’s chief executive officer Jeff Sowiak told the media: “The council’s belief is that the categorisation of some communities as outstations is just a means of denying people who live there access to basic levels of services, or a lesser standard of service.”

In the face of this anger, sections of the Aboriginal leadership have begun criticising Working Future, including ex-NT deputy chief minister Marion Scrymgour and former federal government commissioner Patrick Dodson, who both earlier participated in its drafting. Scrymgour was in charge of drawing up the plans and commissioned Dodson to hold consultations with homeland residents.

On June 4, Scrymgour resigned from the Labor Party in protest, ending the NT government’s one-seat majority. She told ABC television that the policy was “insulting” and that Labor had “lied to Aboriginal people”. Dodson told the media that Working Future was “not just brutal but a ‘die on the vine’ policy” aimed at “forcing people into the major towns against their wishes”.

The record shows, however, that Dodson and Scrymgour [so-called Aboriginal leaders! hmmm…] have no fundamental differences with Labor’s measures. Dodson has proposed that homelands with more than 100 residents should be designated as communities and serviced to the same level as other similar NT communities. This would still force the closure of many smaller settlements and merely perpetuate the existing under-funding for the remainder. While medical surveys suggest that homeland residents have better health results and lower mortality rates than those living in town camps and urban centres, social conditions remain desperately inadequate for all Aboriginal people.

… If the homeland settlements [and similar cultural enclaves] are finally shut down, this will constitute yet another chapter in the shameful history of dispossession and dispersal [and disease] of Australia ’s indigenous population [Aboriginals]—carried out to clear the land for capitalist [monetary] exploitation.

Source: World Socialist Web Site

Acknowledging Traditional Owners Sign of Respect

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda has rejected the idea that acknowledging traditional owners is tokenistic, saying it is an accepted mark of respect.

Responding to references by the Federal Opposition leader Tony Abbott, on the weekend that the practice was tokenistic and paternalistic, Commissioner Gooda said such acknowledgements were a statement of fact and critical to the nation’s ongoing reconciliation process.

“The High Court of Australia in the Mabo decision recognised the fact that Australia was occupied when the British came here and that the land (and the seas) continued to be cared for, occupied, utilised and identified as the land of different tribal groups, operating in accordance with their customary laws and traditions,” Commissioner Gooda said.

“It was more than 200 years before the courts finally recognised this fact in 1992 and it, along with the National Apology to the Stolen Generations, has steered us along the reconciliation path that we are still travelling on.

“Acknowledging Traditional Owners is a contemporary and practical way of enshrining the High Court decision in Mabo,” Commissioner Gooda said. “As a nation, we have now moved beyond debating what is a self-evident truth about our history. Acknowledging Traditional Owners is a matter of respect,” Commissioner Gooda said.

Media contact: Louise McDermott on 0419 258 597 02 9284 9851

Australian Human Rights Commission, Media Release, 15 March 2010

Source: Australian Human Rights Commission, Media Release

Before Its Gone

Due to persistent and senseless decimation and domination of the aboriginal people (akas 1st nations and/or indigenous) of this earth, and more specifically those held in High Esteem within these societies, the survival and revival of Tjukurritja manifest (the Dreamtime evident) is to be made known, as a matter of cultural respect, regard, and urgency …

Tjukurritja Tjukurrpa

Tjukurritja Tjukurrpa

Since time immemorial, the Way to the Tjukurritja (Dreamtime) has been maintained and honoured through various rites-of-passage, and an ensuing disciplined life that revolved around necessary sacred ritual. Instructions from the “agents” (Ancestral Beings) of the Kurrunpa (the life force in all), were entrusted to the initiated; the enlightened, and the custodial. Often, these “messianic-like” people, living within the context of their societies and respective territories, were referred to as “people of High Esteem” … the medicine wo/men and Law men of their respective communities.

With respect to Australia, the absolute-original Law for all Life (access to, and the learning of) — the “TAO of the Tjukurritja” was protected and entrusted to the Aboriginals, by means of instructions known as “The Law”.

In 1788, the last continent to be infected with the “Disease of The Lost” was Australia — and as a result, most of the earth-bound guardians of the secret-sacred Tjukurritja Tjukurrpa (Dreamtime Story), have all but passed from this plane.

With the advent and embracing of the Agricultural; Industrial; Scientific and Techno-logical Ages respectively, coupled with the spread of the resultant “Lost Tribes” and colonisation, the demise of knowledge-enabled aboriginal peoples of this world is now upon us.

The resulting vacuum has created a break in the flow — the Kurrunpa of life — allowing the opportunist, the self-centred and the modernised a license to readily present themselves as self-anointed messengers and “wisdom teachers” of the colonised “global village” and its New World Order.

Unfortunately and regrettably, within the so-called “New Age”, these self-appointed gurus in many guises with somewhat dubious authority and motives pray-on the gullible, the tired, the lost, and the hope-less, who all too often fall prey to the concocted messages that have been miss-taken, and are not soundly g/rounded within “the Law” given from the Tjukurritja and taught within the absolute original story, the Tjukurrpa.

The consequences of this crisis are all encompassing.

The Transplanting of The Seed

As the Family Tree of Humanity grew and evolved from the depths of the Land of the Seed (originally belonging to Gondwanaland), It’s prunings, broken branches and off-shoots were dispersed far from their Origin. Weakened from lack of nurture and the immediate proximity of the source of the Kurrunpa and the accompanying Custodians and Guardians (the very first humans), these “seeds” were unavoidably diluted, mutated and manipulated.

The adaptations of the Knowing of Origene grew from the elements of truth, and became the the sacred Law of the aboriginal peoples of those far-flung places far from the Dreamtime. Some of the essential elements of Tjukurritja Tjukurrpa (Dreamtime Story) have survived in the newer societies, though much is lost through the tyranny of distance, erosion, eradication, exploitation, and the evolvement and enforcement of earth-bound time.
Summation

The Tjukurritja Tjukurrpa is the wholiest of sacred stories.

  • It is the omnipotent and omnipresent Law of Life.
  • It is the Law of Nature.
  • It is from the Source, and therefore beyond all knowing.
  • Its truth can only be experienced.
  • It’s provisos are not negotiable.
  • It cannot be sold nor purchased.
  • It’s origins and substance are not of this world’s logic… though many throughout humankind profess their awareness of the Tjukurritja in it’s varied and diverse manifestations,
  • It is all too often either presented in an adulterated manner by the uninitiated and ill-informed, resulting in more damage than repair, or
  • It remains ignored and/or derided by society that is, in the main, unconscious, ‘asleep’ and deluded.

Personal experience should not be too readily discounted.” ~ DjA

Even though there have been many attempts to encapsulate and explain the Tjukurritja’s vitalness in definitive terms, the Dreamtime has evaded contemporary analysis and continues to elude the intelligentsia and the selfish “seekers” of the civilised world.

Closing The Gap

Regarding the historic Apology, there has been a kind of byline to it, or phrase often used, in the political rhetoric and media — “Closing the Gap” — which I take to mean that the Government and the powers-that-be would like to close the gap that exists on matters of education, employment, economic and health standards of the Aboriginals (indigenes of Australia) as compared to that of the average, mainstream, non-Aboriginal, Australian.

Assimilate, Close The Gap

In my view, this really implies or suggests that — although well-intended perhaps — closing the gap must also result in becoming more like the dominant-majority cultural group, including its values, beliefs, indocrination (education) — and in the doing, would that not then mean less differences, culturally? Resulting in lots of Westernised, homogenised, mono-culture and less culturally different or unique Aboriginal Australians? More like “us” and less like them? Lots more white-blakfellas, — with similar goals, aspirations, employment opportunities, access, career paths, materialism, capitalism, economic centred-culture and rationale.

Less traditional, or culturally diverse, more contemporary, mainstream.

What will be the real cost to the the future of the survival and nurturing of “Aboriginal culture” — given that it is actually a more egalitarian, spiritually-centred, less hierarchical, less competitive → more complimentary and cooperative culture? More natural alternative, less normal. What price survival? What cost, and what really is lost, to all of us?