Do we truly uphold Australian values?

Do we really uphold the values we define as being Australian?

Do we truly uphold Australian values?

With Australia Day behind us, the debate on which day our national celebration should be held will ease up for another year. But the day-to-day notion of being ‘Australian’ is one that sticks with us – or should, anyway.

Australia Day is the day the nation comes together. Some will celebrate our great nation with a simple barbecue and a gathering of friends and family. Others will also gather, but to protest what the day means to our First Nation people. Many will be sworn in as new Australians and some will simply ignore the day and enjoy the public holiday that comes with it.

And that is the beauty of our country: the freedom to do whatever we like on a day that reveres what it means to be Australian. It’s a value we hold dear, but one that can sometimes be taken for granted. That freedom highlights the fact that we are truly the lucky country.

Debates about when to hold citizenship ceremonies – with some councils preferring to hold them on dates other than 26 January out of respect for indigenous Australians – were a hot topic this year as in years past.

During the ceremony, applicants for permanent citizenship or permanent visas are asked to swear themselves in with this statement of Australian values:

I confirm that I have read, or had explained to me, information provided by the Australian Government on Australian society and values.

I understand that:

  • Australian society values respect for the freedom and dignity of the individual, freedom of religion, commitment to the rule of law, Parliamentary democracy, equality of men and women and a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, tolerance, fair play and compassion for those in need and pursuit of the public good
  • Australian society values equality of opportunity for individuals, regardless of their race, religion or ethnic background
  • the English language, as the national language, is an important unifying element of Australian society

I undertake to respect these values of Australian society during my stay in Australia and to obey the laws of Australia.

I understand that if I should seek to become an Australian citizen:

  • Australian citizenship is a shared identity, a common bond which unites all Australians while respecting their diversity
  • Australian citizenship involves reciprocal rights and responsibilities. The responsibilities of Australian Citizenship include obeying Australian laws, including those relating to voting at elections and serving on a jury.

 

If I meet the legal qualifications for becoming an Australian citizen and my application is approved, I understand that I would have to pledge my loyalty to Australia and its people.

The statement offers some interesting points about what it should mean to be Australian. As an example, consider this: “equality of men and women and a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, tolerance, fair play and compassion for those in need and pursuit of the public good”.

Do we really follow this statement to its end? Is respect of women reflected in wages and workplace conditions? Does the word ‘egalitarianism’ truly describe how we treat women, indigenous people and people born outside of Australia? And do we truly show compassion to refugees and for all people in need?

In many cases, sure, but shouldn’t ‘egalitarianism’ in the true sense of the word apply to all circumstances?

Consider also “Australian society values equality of opportunity for individuals, regardless of their race, religion or ethnic background”.

It’s funny. I was at the Australia Day festival in Melbourne on Saturday and I heard a (white) man in his twenties say “See, not a single Aussie in sight”. The reality is, he was surrounded by Australians celebrating Australia Day. Seemed he just couldn’t see past race. Is this a failing of our teachers, politicians, preachers or parents? Or is this attitude just ingrained in some people?

While we may not uphold all that is included in this statement of values all the time, the intention of this statement is something we should all strive to enforce. If the intention is there, action should follow.

In the pursuit of discovering what Australians aged 55 and over believe are ‘Australian values’, we went straight to the source, asking them to define the values that make our country and its people so great.

We asked them to list the three most important Australian values, and today, we’ll release the top five.

The most popular responses were ‘belief in a fair go for everyone’ (18 per cent), followed by ‘a fair go for those having a go’ (10 per cent).

So a fair go is important, but for some it is conditional, which to this author, seems fair.

‘Family’ and ‘mateship’ came in equal third, both with nine per cent. In equal fourth came ‘equality’ and ‘upholding the law’, both at seven per cent.

In equal fifth, came ‘strong work ethic’, ‘embrace multiculturalism’ and ‘freedom to do what you want’, all with six per cent of the vote.

Some other great responses included:

  • rallying in times of crisis
  • upholding and defending Australian culture
  • helping others
  • honesty
  • able to laugh at themselves
  • open-minded and ‘liberal’

So, between our national Australian values statement and the values listed above, we all have some good material to work with in 2019 and beyond.

Have you ever read the statement of Australian values? Do you feel that we follow it to a ‘T’? Is there room for improvement? Do you agree with the top five values listed by Australians who are over 55?

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    COMMENTS

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    mogo51
    29th Jan 2019
    10:46am
    There is always an extreme element in every society, no matter what country you are from or reside.
    I believe that as Australians, we have embraced multi culturalism. I am from the 50's and there was a big migration to Australia during that and subsequent decades. Many worked and some died building infrastructure such as the Snowy Mountain Scheme. They went onto to become excellent members of our society.
    Enter the last 20 odd years and we have seen an influx of Muslim/Middle Eastern society, many of whom do make excellent citizens. The problem is that their society also has a violent and radical element that is expanding and causing death and destruction all over the world, including Australia.
    They are identified zs subversive and many Australians are fed up with the 'tolerance' and acceptance of such behaviour. Like me, many want to see the end to this type of migration to Australia.
    Anonymous
    29th Jan 2019
    10:55am
    Multiculturalism, overall, has proven to be a failure - and *the* primary source of division in Australian society. Also, many recent arrivals may know English theoretically, but cannot speak the language intelligibly or understand it. This rules them out as being truly 'Australian'.

    As for Muslims, most do not make "excellent citizens" Were it up to me, Australia would be a Muslim-free country. Wherever Islam rears its ugly head, trouble immediately follows. 1,400 years of its ceaseless turmoil and internecine strife proves this.
    The Care Bear.
    29th Jan 2019
    2:10pm
    "Wherever Islam rears its ugly head, trouble immediately follows"
    You could just as easily say that about any religion.
    TREBOR
    29th Jan 2019
    5:50pm
    Historically there were twelve Crusade battles to recover the Holy Land.... there were over 200 battles to keep Islam out of Europe.... the Muslims still whine about 'Crusaders' .... work it out.....

    Some would say they are now winning a silent battle via immigration... I have no problem with most Muslims, but a core element from the Middle East is a serious problem. A popular vote in Cebu, Philippines, voted to give semi-autonomy to this primarily Muslim Island/province - within days Muslims set off a bomb and killed and injured people... that kind will never be satisfied with anything but total domination.

    Multi-culturalism is a failure - time for integration or not at all. this world is growing smaller by the day and more desperate.... time to lock the gates on Lifeboat Australia, ride out the coming storms.. THEN help any survivors IF we can....
    ex PS
    31st Jan 2019
    9:42am
    So much for "a fair go". If Muslims can take over this country via immigration, it just proves Australia is ready to become Muslim.
    Throughout history Muslims performing Jihad have behaved no worse than Christians on their Crusades. Mainstream religion is seldom the problem, thoughtless fanatics are the issue and they will come no matter what you do to the law abiding members of their community. It is easy to keep the good people out, impossible to keep the bad ones out.
    Australia would be a poorer place if we did not have other cultures to draw on in every day life.
    A battle lasts a day or two, Crusades lasted years, to imply that the Crusades were nothing more than battles is misleading. I can think of many things worth fighting over, religion is not one of them.
    Hoohoo
    28th Feb 2019
    12:09am
    Yes if we have to put up with the Christians then I suppose we have to put up with the Muslims, too.

    I'd prefer if people kept their religion to themselves & simply led by their example. Surely acting like a Christian is more important than conning some innocent into out-dated rituals in a church, which has bugger-all to do with the golden rule - treat others as you'd like to be treated. Jesus had the right idea - he was a revolutionary. The Catholic Church has betrayed Jesus.

    Meanwhile all these genuinely good people are giving their money to the Church, while the head honchos are having "plain vanilla" sex with your children. Wake up people - start your own revolution if you really believe in Jesus & stop financially backing this pack of rogues. They are not helping the cause & they're giving Christianity a bad name.

    29th Jan 2019
    10:48am
    The only true Australians are Aboriginal (descendants of the earliest inhabitants) and Anglo-Celtic Australians (the group who built - and defended - modern Australia. Chinese, Indians, Muslims. Africans etc. who emigrate here are exactly those things, and will never be Australian. Islam in particular is antithetical to Australia and its values.
    Rosret
    29th Jan 2019
    11:23am
    Ouch - that bites Knows-a-lot.
    If you talk to an Aboriginal they will tell you no one owns the land. We may live here generation after generation however we must be kind to the land or there will be nothing for future generations.
    What have you or I given back to the land? How much have we all taken from the land?
    Charlie
    29th Jan 2019
    4:11pm
    Sounding like white Australia policy plus the Abo's. The days of Black fella and white fella.
    TREBOR
    29th Jan 2019
    5:53pm
    You mean the Second People, KAL? Well - I'm sorry to tell you this - but I was born here as well.... and my forebears all the way back to the 1850's... we LIVE HERE!

    We planted a couple of hundred trees on our property...... and treated the animals with respect...

    Apartheid, Charlie? "We wanna do things OUR way!"... OH? And which way was that? These kinds are advocating Apartheid.... (not you)...
    GeorgeM
    30th Jan 2019
    12:10am
    Agree with Charlie, K-A-L's comment is a relic from the White Australia policy. Clearly, people like that don't subscribe to the more balanced definition of Australian values as spelled out in the article. That is part of the problem we have - new arrivals are told these are our values, however those born here or from Ango-Celtic origins seem to consider themselves superior and not bound by these values - the source of racism which continues to be widespread in this country. Clearly, the values need to be taught or reinforced as part of the Education curriculum in this country to change this divide.

    I agree with much of Old Man's comments below - most listed values are OK, but some values are being hijacked by interest groups. On the other hand, these values are not perfect either e.g. English is noted as an important "unifying element", yet how is this reinforced? Why not insist on a good standard of English to gain entry into this country? Christianity is the major religion since Anglo-Celtic settlement here, yet where is that mentioned or recognised as a major driver of values in this country? So, some work on these values, and more educational focus is clearly needed for better acceptance and more unification of values in this country. Indeed, that should also form the basis of Immigration tests - more points for those who match. What's the point of listing values if they don't translate into how we select people to come here?
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    1:48am
    **ahem** George.. I said they were hijacked.......
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    1:53am
    You're new here, I know.....

    "What's the point of listing values if they don't translate into how we select people to come here? "

    Some would say you are 'racist' for saying that - some would say you have the same superiority complex as you purport to belong to the Anglo-Celtic...(I'm Gaelic/Celtic/German) .. most of those 'Anglo-Celtics' do not have anything of the sort... they simply object to wrongdoing - and that is not 'racist' or 'supremacist' or anything like it, just normal - and it often pales into insignificance compared to the blatant racism of many who claim to be 'oppressed' here today.

    Just educating you.... no offence....
    GeorgeM
    30th Jan 2019
    11:01pm
    Trebor, I hardly read your comments (sorry if that hurts your ego) before I made my comments. I don't spend that much time as many on the YLC website to read all comments.

    On the other hand, I think you have misunderstood me - I never said I was new here, never said Anglo-Celtic, and I simply clarified how the thinking of what values we want should match who we select to come here - it does not have to be the United Nations decision, as we have to look after ourselves (UN is a total failure as it didn't help so many countries in trouble, so who are they to dictate to us), and there is nothing wrong in weeding out people who are not interested in accepting our culture from coming here. That is just common sense at a practical level, as "prevention is better than the cure"!

    Thanks, but no thanks, no education needed as I always do my own information gathering and make up my own mind - doesn't saying what you said make you sound pompous and full-of-yourself, so maybe you do feel superior?
    Hoohoo
    1st Mar 2019
    12:22am
    A few here sound quite self-righteous, superior & entitled to be "Real Aussies" because they're Anglo Celtic Christian or whatever. It's not what you think or where you came from, what matters is how you act, nothing more. So unhinge your egos from your caboose & treat people with respect, regardless of their race or religion.

    Our real values are reflected in our laws. Our laws don't tolerate swindling or violence, so it doesn't matter what your religion or ethnic background, OUR LAWS APPLY TO YOU. I have a big problem with Sharia Law when it contradicts THE LAW OF THE LAND.

    But why stop at Sharia Law? How about other religions who preach ridiculous stuff? The Catholic Church comes to mind. What's the point of teaching all these church rules when the head honchos are raping your children? It isn't only criminal & against the Law, it's in absolute contradiction to their own very strict teachings about celibacy, homosexuality & sex before marriage. Then they have the hide to say gay people who love each other dearly, can't get married! They should just stick to the golden rule - treat others as you'd like to be treated, just as Jesus said. Forget your stupid church rules made up by men.

    I know quite a few very good Muslims. They are loving & affectionate to all their children. They are gentle, beautiful people. I'm proud to be their friend. I'm glad they are Aussies. I can say the same for hundreds of Catholics I'm friends with. It's what you do, not what you believe that's important.

    29th Jan 2019
    11:51am
    I have read the Australian values and I agree with them. They are standard middle-of-the-road feel good statements designed to offend nobody.

    “equality of men and women and a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, tolerance, fair play and compassion for those in need and pursuit of the public good”.

    I believe that the above statement is acceptable if it is considered that respect is a two way street. If one gives respect, one gets respect. It is not respectful for women, or their advocates, to keep trumpeting about inequality in the workforce whether it be pay, superannuation or promotions. More than that, it is spreading lies by using extreme examples and trying to make them appear as the norm. The truth is that men work more hours than women in the main and are remunerated accordingly. Now we have politicians wanting to pay women higher superannuation rates to compensate for the fact they don't do as much paid employment as men. What rubbish!

    “Australian society values equality of opportunity for individuals, regardless of their race, religion or ethnic background”.

    There is equal opportunity for people providing they have the qualifications, experience and ability to do the work required. It is noted that the unions want quotas to allow more women in some industries which is not equality and will exclude men who are qualified, experienced and have the ability from applying. Interestingly, unions are happy to have teaching and nursing exempt from any quota system because that would mean stopping women from applying as those vocations are predominantly female oriented.

    The qualities expected of new citizens are acceptable but unions and politicians are getting in the way of the statement of Australian Values. They want less qualified, experienced people with lesser ability to fill roles just because they happen to be from a gender group or ethnic background. They want to pay people different rates because of gender and, as is normal for politicians, they will use our money to do that.

    Australians by and large are a tolerant people who really only have one rule that they live by; the work ethic. If Fred or Mary rolls up the sleeves and has a fair dinkum go, most Australians will accept them without question, regardless of race, colour or creed. I am a proud Australian who loves this great nation and the majority of those around me.
    TREBOR
    29th Jan 2019
    5:56pm
    It's the 'definitions' of those words used in those sentiments that are the real cause of trouble....... many of them have been hijacked by special interest groups and even given whole new meanings...

    1984 - Ministry For Equality - dedicated to ensuring some are more equal than others into perpetuity......

    Ministry of Household Peace - dedicated to ensuring that violence at home is only held by one chosen side and by the State (bad policy - ask the Glen Innes cops)...

    Just examples....
    Hoohoo
    1st Mar 2019
    12:40am
    Old Man, what in hell is that "...respect is a two way street. If one gives respect, one gets respect. It is not respectful for women, or their advocates, to keep trumpeting about inequality in the workforce whether it be pay, superannuation or promotions." ?

    Worse, you then go on to say "...The truth is that men work more hours than women in the main and are remunerated accordingly." What planet are you living on Old Man? Women do much more work than men do - they just don't get paid for it. And, they save governments billions of dollars by caring for their elderly parents, their disabled children, their young children & their neighbours,

    What rubbish indeed! "It is not respectful..." blah. You truly misuse the word or you just don't understand what MUTUAL RESPECT means. Some of you men ought to start pulling your weight. Wake up to yourselves & stop biting the hand that feeds you.
    KSS
    29th Jan 2019
    12:38pm
    No we are not tolerant nor do we give everyone a fair go.

    Sucks to be male in Australia right now. Sucks even more if you are a white male! And if you happen to be middle aged, white and male - well good luck to you, you're going to need it!

    So much for Australian values!
    TREBOR
    29th Jan 2019
    5:58pm
    Arguing 'invasion day' yesterday - and the Big Word was - "shut up old man".... I responded that the person had not taken a trick thus far - and that the strength of Old White Men was that they were good at besting others who know nothing... using knowledge and facts....
    Misty
    29th Jan 2019
    11:42pm
    And what brought that on KSS, have you lost your job?.
    KSS
    30th Jan 2019
    6:14am
    No Misty, have you?

    Just pointing out the total lack of tolerance and equality afforded men and boys these days. Oh and that would include all the males in YOUR family too!
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    10:40am
    All these 'feminist' mothers of young men about to start university under the current regime in academia - will form an interesting study group in the near future.
    Hoohoo
    4th Feb 2019
    4:15pm
    Oh poor baby, KSS! Missing your usual white male privilege, are we? Times have changed, thank goodness.

    I'm glad our laws no longer tolerate racial discrimination & misogyny, or any unfair treatment to anyone. We're not there yet but society is slowly catching up.

    I understand you two have issues from broken marriages & I presume you were denied custody of your children. I think it's terrible for any good parent to be separated from their kids & I'm sorry this has happened to you. But as long as you remain estranged in your marriage, there will always be one parent who must miss out on custody. I think the person who has done the majority of the domestic caring should be the one who gets custody. It shouldn't automatically be the mother, just as doing most of the domestic caring needn't necessarily always be the mother. I also think the children should have a say.
    Ted Wards
    29th Jan 2019
    1:18pm
    I personally hate the word tolerance, because it means we put up with and does not necessarily imply we embrace etc. If tolerance is the best we can aspire to, I am not sure what that says about our wonderful nation?
    TREBOR
    29th Jan 2019
    6:03pm
    Like many such words - it now has a one-way meaning.... if I walk down a street I can have someone yell out that I'm a racist (for breathing apparently)... if I were to do that to them.... there'd be uproar... equal rights commission... trials... punishments... hatred..hostility.... public humiliation ....

    Grievance Inc can march down the street waving Apartheid flags and chanting and holding up signs to burn the nation down and threaten anyone they feel may not like their stance .... if some who disagree wave Australian flags and stand silently, they are moved on by police.... 'escorted' away.... and are labeled 'Nazis'.....

    When does Kristallnacht begin so I can get the popcorn and beer franchises?
    Pastor
    29th Jan 2019
    1:27pm
    “equality of men and women and a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, tolerance, fair play and compassion for those in need and pursuit of the public good”.

    One problem, as I see it, particularly among the young, is that a significant number of those from another culture or background require the above to be shown to them but do not show it back to those who are already Australian, and especially to Caucasians. It would appear that children (some, if not many) of families from a different culture are not being properly instructed by their parents of how they are expected to live in Australia. And it also applies to many Australians of long-standing!
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    12:11pm
    Hoo-ar, Sir! Heard and received...
    Charlie
    29th Jan 2019
    3:51pm
    I understand that:
    If Australians values are to be documented, let them be interpreted in the common sense Australian way, without ridiculous meanings flowing on from the words, racism, equality, and offend.
    TREBOR
    29th Jan 2019
    5:45pm
    Australia Day is now a day of national grievance, wherein anyone with any grievance, real or imagined, can get behind what they see as the major grievance of the Kooris. Nonsense of course - Australia Day, even from the Indigenous site, is for ALL Australians, and is no way a celebration of any 'invasion'. That is the product of the fevered minds of a few malcontents, and just another convenient handle for any with any vague and unconnected 'grievance' to latch onto.

    On the other hand, the Koori site itself clearly states that NAIDOC WEEK is for all to celebrate what Kooris have achieved and appreciate their values etc. No argument there from me.

    180 deg turn again - a very well-known TV presenter posed the question to some young firebrand that the real problems for many Kooris were violence, substance abuse, domestic violence and such - and shouldn't those be addressed rather than demanding a change to Oz Day (day for all)? She was instantly called a racist.....

    That is the kind of discussion people get over any 'issues' these days - and frankly - that kind of 'discussion' will never yield a result, and nor will it make any meaningful changes.

    It's time to state a flat NO to this nonsense, and insist on sitting down for a real discussion of real issues - rather than continuing this insane rush to division and eventually violence.

    That's my two cents worth....
    GeorgeM
    30th Jan 2019
    12:22am
    Sorry, you are trying hard to avoid the fact that it is indeed an "invasion day" being celebrated. Clearly, good grounds for Aborigines to see it that way, and the sooner all acknowledge that the better. It also has not much meaning for the Chinese, Greeks, Italians, other Europeans, Vietnamese, Indians, Muslims, etc, etc, who came later.

    Far better to have a different date with no connection favouring one group, which all can then relate to equally well. Ideally, we should become a Republic and the day that happens could be the new Republic / Australia Day.

    We should also have a directly elected President who can (like Trump) deliver what he says he will, instead of Party policies ignoring what the people want.
    That's my two, or three, cents worth...
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    1:45am
    When did it become an 'invasion day'?
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    1:59am
    The over riding Indigenous website says Australia Day is for ALL Australians... sorry - I'm 'avoiding' nothing... just stating facts.

    The arrival of a couple of hundred people is hardly an 'invasion'.... and the concept never even existed until the Aboriginal population expanded and was educated by the same 'invasion' - there was no nation or organised society to invade...

    The whole thing is a beat-up to avoid dealing with the real problems of Indigenous people.... and is promoted by a few who attract a crowd of hangers-on, anyone with any 'grievance'..... 'feminists', gays, young kids - all doing it soooo hard in this nation these days.....
    GeorgeM
    30th Jan 2019
    11:16pm
    There you go again - one would think you have the overriding authority on what everyone must think or accept! There is NO other reason to make 26th January a significant date than when the White settlements (some are therefore free to call it invasion given the casualties - even a few people with guns can do a lot of damage, also free speech anyway) started here. My point was that such divisiveness will remain until the matter is addressed to make it a day significant for ALL people without such hangover issues. It is time for all to understand this otherwise you are pretending the issue isn't there.

    It was also stupid and insensitive (I don't believe racist) of the TV presenter to try to shut down the topic and hurl other accusations instead of discussing a particular issue on it's own merit. It is NOT a diversion, indeed it was being discussed on / around Australia Day, not at some other time of the year.
    Anonymous
    1st Feb 2019
    4:08pm
    Well, after the nasty and divisive comments I witnessed from Aboriginals and the gross racism demonstrated by some (not the majority - but the majority are happy with Australia Day staying as is!) I have no sympathy at all for the screaming radical ratbags who have no appreciation for the good things the white man has given them. From where I stand, most of the division is caused by radical Aborigines and their ratbag white supporters. And there WAS no invasion, but we saved the Aborigines from invasions that would have annihilated them completely.
    Hoohoo
    2nd Feb 2019
    3:16pm
    That's very peculiar logic, OGRainey!
    "We saved you from foreign invaders by imposing OUR lovely British version of invasion, you ungrateful, lucky black devils!" Oh thank you, white men, for ALL you've given us. How about ALL THAT YOU TOOK & YOU STILL TAKE TO THIS DAY? It's SOOOO condescending.

    All Aborigines have asked for is self-determination, not white men's soul-destroying welfare & control. The Uluru Statement posed this view, but our then Prime Minister said Australian people weren't ready & would vote it down. Again, white men telling us how it will be. Maybe white Australians aren't ready to have empowered, strong, sober, healthy & educated First Nations People? Maybe we prefer them to be weak & to die young? Because then we can justify continuing to treat them so very poorly.

    Thank you for your common sense, GeorgeM. Australia Day should be a day for all Australians to celebrate, without favour for any one group. Change the date & avoid the baggage & controversy 26th January brings with it.

    I say Australia Day be the day we rid ourselves of another country's flag in the corner of our flag.
    GeorgeM
    2nd Feb 2019
    9:05pm
    Thanks, Hoohoo. I thought I had explained everything! But some get emotional and find it hard to see the other points of view. I agree the remarks from OGR are rather condescending and one-sided. The British Empire did take over a very large number of countries across the world, and it wasn't by using their charm!

    However, the past is past, and the current generations DO NOT need to feel guilty or apologetic for the past when not only the British, but also the French, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Russians, Germans & Japanese (latter two in WW II) all tried to take over the world. The norm those days!

    What a civilised society of today needs to do is talk across the table and find agreement and solutions for fairness and opportunities to all, including all the recent new arrivals, and move forward as one nation - even the USA has managed to do that - as they did declare Independence from the British and then built their own nationalistic sense of identity around Independence Day and other symbols. A new Australia Day could indeed be a Republic Day (with a slight change to our flag as you have noted) - if our leaders put it to a referendum I think it would be accepted. Then we just need to become a Republic - that's another topic!
    Hoohoo
    4th Feb 2019
    2:11pm
    TREBOR, your statement "The arrival of a couple of hundred people is hardly an 'invasion'..." neglects to mention those First Fleeters stuck their British flag into the land. The ramifications of that single act, & the fact the British counted Aborigines as animals, not humans, is why we are in this mess now. It symbolised an invasion for the First Nation People, even though they had no concept of what a "colony" was - they were soon to learn it meant they were dispossessed of their Country, their culture, their identity, their dignity & their freedom. Many were murdered just trying to defend their families from this British holocaust/reign of terror.

    The so-called superior culture of the British declared the "savages" were not human, so there was no need to make a Treaty with them. So by law, Australian "sovereignty" is illegitimate. Sovereignty was never addressed at Federation. The British lied when they said the continent was empty of people.

    It seems we'll need to become a Republic to fix this, even though I'm quite happy to continue with a Westminster-style political system, without a foreigner as the Head of State. I personally think the US style of Republicanism stinks. You have to be very, very rich to become President.
    Hoohoo
    3rd Mar 2019
    4:49pm
    I note you have changed your name, OGRainey. Well I hope you are indeed Older and Wiser, after your silly comment.
    Andy
    29th Jan 2019
    6:50pm
    you can say whatever but the first thing to do is get the non-aboriginal off the aboriginal welfare an easy thing to do, a DNA expert says Aboriginal DNA is different to other DNA. most of the problems come from lazy white people pretending to be Aboriginal wanting more money, bigger houses, and more new cars. This has to stop
    Anonymous
    1st Feb 2019
    4:03pm
    Make all welfare the same and problem solved. Why should welfare be race-based? That's racist! Make it needs-based, as it should be. Many Aboriginals either don't need or don't deserve the welfare they get, and are harmed by it being too generous. Conversely, disadvantaged whites may well have needs far greater and more genuine than thousands of Aborigines.
    GeeDub
    30th Jan 2019
    1:27am
    As I wrote earlier:

    It did not take long after our arrival here that it seemed very clear to me that "Australian Values" as something quite distinct and nation-defining were a form of chimera, or put in the local idiom:a 'furphy'. What research has been done shows that there is nothing unique about the words and phrases regularly used to define 'Australian values'. In fact quite the opposite; cultural value scores show Australia to be bog-standard average on all factors. To quote a "Conversation" article that covers this research: "It is hard to escape the conclusion that what is unique about Australian values is their averageness." And: "Australia is the second least distinctive culture of all, beaten to the gold medal by Brazil."

    https://theconversation.com/australian-values-are-hardly-unique-when-compared-to-other-cultures-76917

    The only factors I can deduce that 'pick us out' from the rest is Aussie Rules (and even that is mirrored quite well by Gaelic football) and the one Australian stand-out that DOES clearly pick us out as 'different' is Aboriginal culture and length of tenure in the one environment. PLEASE though do not let any of this out to most politicians and their mainstream media friends!
    PS I have the raw data scores if anyone is interested. Also consult Hofstede "Cultural Dimensions" research. I also have these country-based data!
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    2:02am
    All cultures have had an extensive tenure.. otherwise they would not exist at all... the process of change occurs as a matter of course..... and thus cultures of all kinds have existed from Day One of human life on Earth..

    Are you suggesting that Aboriginal culture did not change at all for 40,000 years, and that whatever other cultures lead to current cultures did not exist then and change along the way? That is the real test.... and (ahem) nothing remains static....

    Get your head out of those biased books...
    TREBOR
    30th Jan 2019
    10:48am
    Perhaps we could look at Japanese culture - that has undergone many changes and yet is distinctive..... and has been far more organised than a loose non-confederation of roaming nomadic groups. How many such actually exist in this day and age? The desert Bedouin run around in Toyotas, same with the Kalahari bushmen, the Mongolian horse people .....and each such group is a part of their over-arching society and its culture while retaining aspects of their original culture.

    Why is it so hard for some to accept that Australians generally value Aboriginal culture, and basically respect other people - but that common courtesy is often not returned, but only not returned by groups who choose not to? Chinese, for example are, in my eyes, very nice people and very civilised and return civility with civility, but their government is sneaky and nasty.
    ex PS
    31st Jan 2019
    9:55am
    It's a mission statement, and like all statements of this kind, we kid ourselves that we, for the main part follow the concepts. We have to ask ourselves honestly, do we as individuals or as a country actually follow these values? If we can answer yes, we are alright, if we answer yes but don't really believe it, we are worse of for the fact.