typing is not activism….

environ mentalism, fresh articles, interviews & checkitouts from Sydney.

Full text of Australia’s apology to The Stolen Generations

with 5 comments

update: ABC’s official “apology pages” here.

It’s a bloody good piece of writing, it’s long overdue, and perhaps it’s also one big step closer to our nation eventually saying Thankyou. We wouldn’t be who we are as a culture without the influence of Aboriginal peoples and nations from the moment modern Australia insisted on being born of blood. I think that this action tomorrow by Kevin Rudd will ultimately have greater positive effect on the domestic relationships and politics within Australia than ratifying Kyoto has had on our international relationships. Tomorrow will be a real beginning and much more than the token gesture that some would like to reduce it to.

Brendan Nelson is an utter spoogemop, while Kevin Rudd has balls the size of a goat’s head. Oh yeah, the text

Today we honour the Indigenous peoples of this land, the oldest continuing cultures in human history.

We reflect on their past mistreatment.

We reflect in particular on the mistreatment of those who were Stolen Generations – this blemished chapter in our nation’s history.

The time has now come for the nation to turn a new page in Australia’s history by righting the wrongs of the past and so moving forward with confidence to the future.

We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians.

We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, their communities and their country.

For the pain, suffering and hurt of these Stolen Generations, their descendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry.

To the mothers and the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for the breaking up of families and communities, we say sorry.

And for the indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a proud people and a proud culture, we say sorry.

We the Parliament of Australia respectfully request that this apology be received in the spirit in which it is offered as part of the healing of the nation.

For the future we take heart; resolving that this new page in the history of our great continent can now be written.

We today take this first step by acknowledging the past and laying claim to a future that embraces all Australians.

A future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again.

A future where we harness the determination of all Australians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to close the gap that lies between us in life expectancy, educational achievement and economic opportunity.

A future where we embrace the possibility of new solutions to enduring problems where old approaches have failed.

A future based on mutual respect, mutual resolve and mutual responsibility.

A future where all Australians, whatever their origins, are truly equal partners, with equal opportunities and with an equal stake in shaping the next chapter in the history of this great country, Australia.

Check out the coverage at National Indigenous Times, as well as the excellent pre-Sorry Day coverage on the February 12 edition of the 7:30 Report

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Written by typingisnotactivism

February 12, 2008 at 9:31 pm

5 Responses

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  1. I have lived in Canberra for a while now and I cannot stop smiling. This is a grand first step and I congratulate Rudd. Australia was inching towards it the past few years but it needed some balls, I agree. Having said that, that something so bleeding obvious needed such a long time to confront is surprising.

    And talking of acknowledging the injustices to the Aborigines, just wondering if the United States would do the same to the Native Indians… accept that they were wrong and ask for forgiveness.

    Karthik Ram

    February 14, 2008 at 1:29 pm

  2. Ow. Living in Canberra? I hope you’re doing work you enjoy because it helps kill the boring in the air 🙂
    I’ve got a feeling that America’s acknowledgment was in the form of casinos and Kevin Costner movies, but I’m not sure what formal steps they have taken. Anybody?
    And I totally agree – Rudd has balls the size of gorilla fists, and his speech was superb. Truly a massive moment in our history, can’t wait to see what more comes of it.

    typingisnotactivism

    February 14, 2008 at 2:11 pm

  3. Boring?

    Living in Canberra, is what you make it. This morning I had to gallop past the honey eaters, rosellas, red neck-wallaby’s, grey kangaroos, and the unidentified little bird of prey that drifted around me without reaching for the camera because I had a rally in town to attend to bring Nick Keelty to account and didn’t have time.

    The lack of numbers there was more a reflection of the fact everyone has been up on the hill saying sorry (and meaning it) and a bit pooped than people not caring if Keelty has been stomping on the rule of law.

    Beats getting stuck in the traffic!

    Jude

    February 15, 2008 at 6:13 pm

  4. About bloody time & now I might be able to say I’m Australian again without feeling ashamed.

    It gives me particular joy to know that this media-God moment for Rudd was created by our old bud Howard. If he hadn’t been such a complete & utter arrogant fuckwitted marrow-brain he could have totally deflated the impact of Rudd’s glory (& also cheapened the gesture, which was surely his goal) by sneaking in a quick apology before the election.

    He could have babbled some faffy crud similar to the poison spat by Nelson & robbed us all of this poignant event.

    But hurrah! He remained an arrogant narrow-minded twit till the end & Rudd’s reputation & the nation’s soul are all the better for it.

    He should REALLY be feeling sorry now.

    casey

    February 28, 2008 at 10:42 pm

  5. Most of us here in America are in the dark over this I am ashamed to say..at least a large part of us. After spending the last few days poring over news from your part of the globe, I can say I am a bit more up to speed and would like to send my best regards to Mr Rudd for doing the right thing, at the very least it is a beginning and as with any difficult task, a first step is required. Now, hopefully the healing can begin in earnest. I have shed many tears over the accounts I have read over the last few days, not truly being able to imagine the heartbreak of those children and families affected. It did take balls of Iron to do what needed doing….all my best….Rich B. in Florida, USA.

    And thank you for this opportunity to comment. We have our own past trespasses here to deal with, a great many.

    Rich

    April 29, 2008 at 2:02 pm


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