The overwhelming failure of the Indigenous Voice referendum should come as no surprise. Australia revealed as racist nation, as the only country in the New World to not recognise its First Nations people continues into the 21C. One of the wealthiest lands in the world could not see its way to giving its unrecognised Aboriginal population a voice at the big table. Generations of embedded racism celebrated its denial of an already defeated 4% of the population with a resounding No. No voice, and no change to the Australian Constitution – a document that contains no acknowledgement of those who were dispossessed of their land and culture.
Rich Racists Fund No Campaign In Australia
The No campaign got organised with money from the big end of town. Simon Fenwick kicked in a couple of million to ensure there were plenty of black tee-shirts emblazoned with No. The leering face of Tony Abbott became the Abbott to Jacinta Price’s Costello, as the public faces of the No vote. You have to ask the question why would these people devote large amounts of money to defeating a modest proposal like the Voice? The hard right conservative forces saw this as a political fight they could win after losing power at the last federal election. It was always a political campaign against Anthony Albanese, with Indigenous Australians as mere collateral damage along the way.
Climate Change Deniers & Racists
Simon Fenwick is a climate change denier like his mate Tony Abbott. People like this have already cost Australia decades in delayed action on dealing with global warming. Personally, as the bush fires and floods get worse and become even more prevalent, I would like to see these people prosecuted for crimes against humanity. Their pig headed belief in the rights of individuals to go on making money from fossil fuels and industries exacerbating the problems should be held accountable. It is our children who will look back at these execrable people and wonder why we did nothing when we could.
Education Levels Mirror Voice Referendum Result
You can see the percentages of No over Yes in the Voice referendum matching those inherent in levels of education in Australia. There are more folk who did not attend university in Australia than those that did. Why is this important? It is important because it is at the tertiary level of education that you learn about the perspective of others. You study in depth, in many humanities subjects, what life is like for people other than yourself. Whereas those who have solely worked for a living and left school earlier find most profundity in their own hard won point of view. The Voice referendum was not really about the white Australian perspective – it was about Indigenous Australians. If you have not been trained to see and value the view of others it rarely comes naturally. Indigenous communities voted Yes overwhelmingly for the Voice.
Conservative Forces Manipulating Ignorant Communities
The conservative forces in Australia recognise the general ignorance within Australians about First Nations people. If you don’t know vote No. The right wing hardliners value the maintaining of that level of ignorance within the electorate, as it is easier to manipulate stupid people. Disinterest and an exclusive focus on their own hip pocket makes Australians particularly pliable in the hands of propagandists. The Murdoch’s News Corp has made a fortune out of this over many decades in Australia and globally. Riling folk up about emotive issues like race, immigration, LGBTQI gender issues and the like.
Saying No To Division Is A Joke
The short sighted argument that the Voice would create division is a clear illustration of this. Only 1 in 6 white Australians has any regular contact with an Indigenous person, according to the research on this topic. Therefore, most Australians do not know any First Nations Aussies, which makes them susceptible to lies and mistruths. The very fact that less than 15% of us spend any meaningful time with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians says a lot about the division which already exists. This idea that we all share equally in the concept of being Australian is a bad joke.
Lots of white Australians will cross the street to avoid an Indigenous person and will not sit next to one on a bus or train willingly. This is the reality in Australia for First Nations people, especially those with darker skin.
“The BBC characterised the campaign as “fraught and often acrid”, pointing to the no camp’s claim – unfounded according to Australia’s leading constitutional minds – that the voice would be divisive and create a “special class of citizens” that had more rights than others.
The result would leave Australia’s prime minister, Anthony Albanese, “searching for a way forward”, the BBC reported.”
Robert Sudha Hamilton is the author of Money Matters: Navigating Credit, Debt, and Financial Freedom.