I don’t need to be ‘welcomed’ to my country

By Lincoln Brown

The notion that Australians must be welcomed or invited to their own country by Indigenous leaders – as occurs at the opening of state and federal parliaments, conferences, and school assemblies – is a divisive and destructive one.

This practice, while it may appear reasonable or harmless, is a manifestation of the ongoing assault on Australia’s Western heritage and implies that non-Indigenous Australians, whose families have called Australia home for many generations, do not really belong here. I recently attended an event where the audience (mostly comprised of Australians with European heritage) were ‘welcomed’ by an Indigenous speaker. It was a pitiful display of bitterness, resentment, and even hatred towards white Australians. Indeed, it was little more than a scolding for the colour of their skin.

The speaker bluntly stated that Australia still belongs to ‘First Nations’ people (a nonsensical and ahistorical term lifted from Canada’s debates about colonialism) and does not belong to so- called ‘white people’ (or presumably any other migrant families). He then asserted that the audience needed to learn Australia’s ‘true history’. This, even though ignorance of Australia’s British heritage has never been more apparent than it is now.

It was an overtly adversarial presentation – devoid of hope or a positive vision for Australians. Not a trace of recognition for the fact that Indigenous people enjoy the same fundamental rights that all Australians enjoy, or the tremendous efforts that governments, charities, and individuals have put into improving life for Indigenous Australians over many decades. Instead, the speaker aggressively asserted that Indigenous people are still colonised and that white people must continue to be reminded of this until colonialism ends.

The belief that all Australians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike, have a right to call the country in which we were born home is now openly attacked.

The desired outcome for such activists is unclear. How, exactly, will we know when enough has been done to overcome racism? What measurable goals must be achieved? When will we be able to congratulate ourselves for elevating Indigenous voices and dismantling colonialism enough? Will it be when all references to Christianity are removed from the national curriculum, as was attempted (and, thankfully, negated) last year? Or when we abolish the Australian flag? At what point will we have made enough progress?

Ironically, as I flew home on a Qantas jet, the pilot acknowledged the traditional custodians of the state I was returning home to. It is a strange form of colonialism in which major corporations, from airlines to the AFL, feel the need to constantly remind everyone that the land belongs to Indigenous people. One would think that if racism were the ubiquitous problem that we are told it is then major corporations would not bother with such sentiments.

White people, as nebulous as that concept is, are not guests in Australia. My ancestors were also born and raised here many generations ago. No one should be made to feel guilty for the colour of their skin or blamed for the actions of people who have long since died. This attribution of historical, collective guilt to an entire group of people due to their ethnicity is not only racist but is a symptom of a dying Australia. It is a direct, ideological assault on Western values based on selective distortions of history and the Marxist idea of class guilt, now applied to race, which divides humanity into ‘oppressed’ and ‘oppressor’ classes and ascribes sinfulness or virtue based on whatever group one happens to belong to.

If you are Indigenous, you are a victim, and therefore virtuous. If you are white, you are an oppressor, and therefore sinful. If you disagree, this demonstrates that you are entrenched in your oppressor privilege, which makes you more of a racist.

This is dangerous fiction.

The reality that nobody is allowed to acknowledge, but everyone knows, is that Indigenous Australians not only enjoy the same basic rights as everyone else but are now viewed by mainstream institutions such as government, media, and education as having a kind of culturally protected status thanks to policies concerned with promoting ‘equity’. Such policies mean that Indigenous people have access to a range of opportunities, from scholarships to employment, that non-Indigenous people do not. Welfare policies for Indigenous people abound, yet so do high rates of alcoholism, abuse, imprisonment, and early deaths in Indigenous communities. Is this because of racism? How many more apologies, more welcomes to country, more equity programs, are needed to remedy these issues and undo the supposed harms of our colonial heritage? Or could it be that these policies, which negate personal responsibility (that nasty colonial idea), do more harm than good?

People are afraid to suggest these things because they will be accused of racism. To call someone a racist is one of the most destructive slurs available. It destroys careers and reputations. This constant threat of ostracism for saying ‘the wrong thing’ is a cudgel the Left wields to shut down debate and discussion about how to view Australian history and how issues in Indigenous communities can be addressed. The tragic irony is that ‘welcome’ ceremonies, apologies, and other pointless gestures do nothing whatsoever to address the real and serious problems faced by Indigenous communities (especially those who live in remote areas). The virtue-signalling activists do not care about helping them, only about getting revenge on white people, and promoting themselves as victims.

None of this is likely to be new to most readers of The Spectator Australia. We know that Western values are under attack and that Australian history is more complex than being entirely good or entirely bad. What is needed is the courage to say the unsayable: it is not right for white people to be chastised for their skin colour, nor is it right to blame every problem that Indigenous people face on so-called racism. This assault on Western values only ends when cancel culture is countered with courage culture, and name-calling stops being a weapon that can be used against people who see through the pernicious cultural-Marxist worldview.

 

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9 comments

  • Rodney Spragg January 11, 2023   Reply →

    ALL of this talk about white and black australians does nothing more than divide the country.!!!!!

  • James Eagles January 11, 2023   Reply →

    Hasn’t stopped the from taking [white] unemployment, millions from the Federal government for
    education, housing, and everything else. Seems to me there are too many ‘white’ aborigines in
    Canberra very well off while the people in the NT, northern WA and north Qld, are forgotten by
    the very people in Canberra that are supposed to speak for them. They were here for 40 thousand
    years and lived like animals, and if the white man hadn’t arrived they still would be. Cook wrote
    they were the most miserable people on earth and he wasn’t far wrong. Most of the ceremonies
    they perform these days for the tourists are copied from other cultures and are nothing like the
    historical films taken in the 1920’s by anthropologists and explorers. I’ve lived for 30 years in the
    top end of WA to NQLD and seen it all for myself.
    Without the white man they would be still eating each other and killing each other.

  • Greg Ivey January 11, 2023   Reply →

    Lincoln Brown’s opinions on Welcome ceremonies are not relevant to Veteranweb. Brown’s item belongs in The Spectator or Quadrant which welcome criticism of the indigenous people’s agenda. As Brown says, the Welcome to Country is basically “reasonable” and “harmless”.

  • Damian and Hong Bing Kelly January 11, 2023   Reply →

    A great article well written. I have been in this country a lot longer than most indigenous alive today in fact my ancestors arrived in 1862 and each generation has provided young ones to fight for this country in all the wars since right up to the latest ones Afghanistan, Timor and Iraq. I do agree we should not have been in any of them but I am not the government.
    My wife is not white so no call me racist but I would like to suggest policies been offered today and as this article suggests are all racist and creating situations that could lead to civil incitement.
    I ask people to check facts on just how many full blooded Indigenous people are in Australia and when they see most have white blood in them but deny it. I could go on but whose listening and I do not lose any sleep over it all one learns that as ones ages.

  • Dave Bauer January 11, 2023   Reply →

    I believe Lincoln Browns opinions are spot on, soldiers who have fought for their country would not need to be welcomed to their own place of berth or even a migrant would or could feel it an unnecessary process, many died for our heritage so for this to be on Veteranweb is very appropriate it also becomes part of the whole business of what the voice is proposing does not bring the nation together is not inclusive but can be seen as exclusive, a mere 3% of the population has a very significant part of the budget of which we all work to create, the indigenous agenda is alienating so many Australians, we are all in this together not separately and the bottom line is help those that help themselves WE ARE ALL EQUAL AUSTRALIANS

  • Keith Jarrett January 12, 2023   Reply →

    The welcome to country and all of the other insidious white guilt trips imposed upon the population are becoming so intense that it is now no different to what is practiced in North Korea and that is mass indoctrination through fear, the fear of being accused of being a racist. Our children will never know the freedoms that we enjoyed in life in Australia, the social engineering carried out in the last 20 odd years has ensured that. and one would have to ask to what end? The total destruction of the Australian way of life.

  • Simon Brooks January 12, 2023   Reply →

    Greg Ivey, I couldn’t agree more. In fact, Lincoln is a writer for the Spectator. Sadly, many veterans still don’t grasp that simple acknowledgements and Welcome to Country ceremonies offer symbolic respect to the Indigenous peoples of this land and that this is critical in their emotional and spiritual wellbeing. And when we consider Indigenous Australian veterans, their historic marginalisation in society based on their race is intergenerational and an additional level of trauma that they must endure, along with any PTSD they may suffer from combat experience. If we are for all veterans, then we should be considerate of simple gestures such as these that can expedite healing. It costs us nothing.

  • Laurens January 12, 2023   Reply →

    I so agree with Greg Ivey.. The racially biased and ignorant comments only bring out the rednecks who have an axe to grind..
    From my perspective I look at the many many traditions white society uses, from the absurd religious traditions. Christs birth celebrated on 25 Dec (which is not the true date.) New years day falling at different times of the year for different cultures to removing foreskins from children for religious reasons
    I am very happy to see Aboriginal people and their traditions rising from the ruins and would be honoured to be welcomed.
    I want to see more of their stories told or made into movies.. It is a rich culture that remains mosly untapped.
    Please dont allow this website to become the domain of the ignorant and the stupid

  • Laurens January 12, 2023   Reply →

    Keith Jarret.
    What is the Australian way of life?
    The Australian way of life has changed multiple times since I was a kid over 70 years ago..
    I dont fear the welcome to country. What you are seeing is Aboriginal culture.
    If you were to travel and absorb other cultures you would also see many other fantastic things such as the way Easter is celebrated in Portugal.(as an example)
    Its your fear that makes you frustrated and angry..

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