Luke Pearson unpacks the historical events that lead to Australia's replacement of the International Day to Eliminate all forms of Racial Discrimination with 'Harmony Day.' A day of erasure of truth under the guise of harmony.
2 Feb 2021
10 things you should know about systemic racism
A brief anti-racism 101 crash course for those throwing rocks at Collingwood from the safety of their glass house.
Last night the Morrison government announced that they were changing the national anthem, to be more inclusive of Indigenous peoples and of migrants (the not white ones anyways), by changing a single word, ‘young’. It’s now ‘one’.
We don’t get to gatekeep conversations, we have a responsibility to encourage them
And even though colourism is not a new conversation, and neither is cultural appropriation, or community accountability, I feel both a freedom with which younger ones are willing to talk about them, and an attempt to shut them down by some of my contemporaries which I do not want to engage in.
Aboriginal people didn’t invent the wheel, but so what?
We’ve decided to start making some short videos since we’ve all got a bit more time on our hands... our first one is from IndigenousX founder and CEO Luke Pearson talking about ‘Why didn’t Aboriginal people invent the wheel?’ - not just the reasons why we didn’t but, more importantly, the reason racists love to bring this up. Hope you enjoy!
ABC Newcastle deleted a post about Newcastle's Invasion Day rally in response to racist comments. This article explains why deleting ABC content and erasing Indigenous stories is not an acceptable option.
Patriotism that should be about a love of the land and people has become instead about a justification for bigotry and racism, about instilling hatred in the perceived ‘other’, and about providing a comfortable smokescreen for government looking after its own interests at the expense of the rest of us.
Racists pretending to be Aboriginal online is not a new phenomenon, with the basic idea being to increase hatred against Aboriginal people by validating white supremacist rhetoric and conspiracy theories.
We don’t want you as our envoy: Abbott’s first trip to NT as Special Envoy
Gadrian Hoosan, a parent and school council member told Abbott he ‘was not welcome in the community since intervention policies ripped out community funding leaving residents worse off, while denying much needed new housing and basic services.’
This Reconciliation Week, take some time to learn about Whiteness
It isn't enough to learn about Aboriginal history to create true understanding. We also need to examine the lens through which history is viewed... White supremacy (and Social Darwinism) still shapes much of the way White Australia sees Aboriginal peoples, cultures and history.
Two of the most popular phrases in Australia, that could not be further apart. One that implores us to honour our history and those who were a part of it, while the other not only ignores a comparable history but aggressively dismisses it and admonishes those who would honour it.
The language of blame, responsibility and accountability
Aboriginal people are over-represented in most of the negative statistics and under-represented in most of the positive ones.
This is the fundamental reality underpinning government programs like ‘Closing the Gap’.
Harmony Day is the perfect day to water down racial discrimination laws
Harmony Day first started in 1999, under the Howard government, and was its way of finding a warm and positive way of not actually doing anything about the issue of racial discrimination in an increasingly multicultural society.
To many, NAIDOC week is a week for family fun days, celebrations, flag-raising, the NAIDOC Ball, and other similar events. The origins of NAIDOC speak to much more though, and perhaps it is time that we thought about taking it back to its roots.
The Wombat to Kaptn Koori – Aboriginal representation in comic books and capes
Growing up, I was a huge comic book fan, but I often wondered why there weren’t many Aboriginal comic book heroes (or villains). I knew of Gateway from Marvel’s X-Men comics, and Condoman from health promotion posters and … Well, that’s about it actually.
6 in 10 white Australians claim they have never met an Indigenous person… But so what?
Reconciliation Australia has found that six out of 10 Australians have had little or no contact with Aboriginal people. It is often held up as a sign of how far we still have to go on our national ‘Reconciliation journey’, and in some ways I can see the relevance but I also think it’s wrong to place too much stock on this statistic.
In Australia, most of us have heard of the phrase ‘casual racism’. According to the Human Rights Commission it refers to ‘conduct involving negative stereotypes or prejudices about people on the basis of race, colour or ethnicity’ – which sounds a lot like racism, and doesn’t seem particularly casual either, at least not from the perspective of those on the receiving end.
All the talk of getting rid of 18C in the Racial Discrimination Act is centred around this idea that it shouldn’t be illegal to offend or insult someone. The conversation usually tries to clear of mentioning that it has to be specifically because of their race, colour, or ethnic origin, and it definitely never goes so far as to examine, or in any way acknowledge, the myriad of exclusions for 18C presented by 18D.
#IndigenousDads – combating stereotypes and reclaiming the conversation
Putting face to the many loving and intact Aboriginal families and engaged and active #IndigenousDads is necessary to reject Leak’s caricature of us, equally we need to find a way to talk about some sad realities beyond the reach of the Bill Leaks of the world and beyond the reach of those who fight with or against him over the top of us.
These are various questions I have been asked about the whole idea of 'Sorry" over the years. Some of the answers are what I have said, others what I should have said, and some others I probably shouldn't have said, but I did; so, you know... sorry about that.
Q. "Why should I be sorry for what my ancestors did?"
Treaty vs Recognition – the importance of self determination
The Treaty vs Recognition debate is an interesting one, although it probably still hasn’t received the attention and scrutiny that it deserves. The push for Treaty is older than any of us, but it has risen to prominence again largely from the frustration felt by many with how the Recognise campaign has been rolled out.
Karmaphobia or: How to be a racist but still be a good person
Sorry white peeps, this isn’t a useful ‘How to’, as the heading suggests, but don’t worry because most white people are already experts at this.
Racism isn’t just the overt hatred of other races, and it isn’t always blind hatred either, but if you were raised in Australia then you have probably been far more regularly exposed to racist attitudes than you have been to almost anything else.
Don’t tell me to ‘get over’ a colonialism that is still being implemented today
The recent shenanigans around the use of “invasion” instead of “settlement” was annoying on so many levels. Not least of which was the stark reminder of how many Australians just require an inciting “green light” from media to let loose a tirade of hatred and ignorance aimed at Indigenous people.
It can happen at the drop of a hat, over the most insignificant of events.
Apple, Facebook and Google Taken to Human Rights Commission over Racist Survival Island 3 App
A group of Aboriginal applicants have today lodged a group complaint to the Human Rights Commission against the multinational suppliers of the free online App/Game ‘Survival Island 3 – Australia Story 3D’ for racial vilification under section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act (RDA).
There was much uproar when Dennis Jensen recently evoked the centuries old ideal of the Noble Savage, mostly because he used a term so outdated and racist that most of us aren’t really all that familiar with it, we just know that it is outdated and racist.
According to the Australia Day website:
“The tradition of having Australia Day as a national holiday on 26 January is a recent one. Not until 1935 did all the Australian states and territories use that name to mark that date. Not until 1994 did they begin to celebrate Australia Day consistently as a public holiday on that date.”
Government not on track to meet Closing the Gap targets because of course they aren’t.
A Productivity Commission has found that the government will probably not meet 5 of the 6 Closing the Gap targets, leaving many astounded to hear that they might actually achieve one of them.
(It should be noted at the outset that the government’s ‘Closing the Gap’ is not the same as ‘Close the Gap’, which is a coalition of Indigenous and non-Indigenous health and community organisations.)
Why We Will Never Find The ‘Most Appropriate’ Term To Refer To All Indigenous Australians.
Finding the ‘most appropriate’ term to refer to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples/Indigenous Australians/First Australians/First Peoples/First Nations etc is literally impossible. Here's why.
Hey ABC & Susan Butler, Please Don’t Ever Call Me A ‘Boong’ Again.
First of all I need to say that I am a big fan of lexicography, I find it to be a fascinating art/science, and generally speaking if you are in a semantic argument with a lexicographer then you better bring your A-game.
As many Indigenous specific programs and services continue to downsize or disappear altogether due to Federal and State governments cutting funding and withdrawing support, many are turning to the online community to keep their doors open.