Georgia Cranko
...a beautifully volatile and disabled existence of raw humanity, art and activism...

Everyday Writings

People are still dying (for me to able to call myself "Australian")

January 26, 2017

As if it even needs to be said, but there is absolutely no pride in genocide: people can act like indigenous issues and trauma can be separated from our national identity and from this date, but that’s really the integral harm that patriotism does. It fools privileged (white, ablebodied, hetero…) people into thinking that how they experience this country is the decent standard. Especially when you aren’t belittled by casual discrimination, it’s very easy to overlook it, and chalk it up to individual ignorance and say “…but we know better and we have done so much better, did you hear Rudd apologised in 2008? Come on, Australia’s not perfect, but it is a beautiful place, our government is doing what it can…”. However, irrespective of the brutality this country is founded on, the murders, rapes and generational violence we still operate with, indigenous children are still being taken away from their families at appalling rates. In fact, they are 10 times more likely to be removed than any white children today, and after the great apology in 2008, the figures have only increased, increased by 6,385 kids to be exact… And indigenous youth imprisonment rates are also shocking. The one thing that is not in doubt is that these things started when we colonised Australia on this day 229 years ago, it was the start of the devastation in indigenous cultures and lives, the poverty, the alcoholism, the heartbreak and every fucking damaging thing. Without letting ourselves feel the grief and utter disgust of how our government continues these legacies of suffering and historical damage, we can’t proceed or even soothe and come together as a nation. I feel a treaty may be a start, not an ideal one, but a genuine start to find a way to stop blaming the victims of genocides, and we'll maybe even find some national solidarity.

Georgia Cranko