Sunday, August 6

The Most Important Law You've Never Heard Of...

So I could blab on about the incredible past few days I’ve had and bore you all senseless with my happiness, but I won’t just yet and instead will make this post not about ME but something very important.

GetUp are about the only guys informing us about something very dangerous about to happen to the very heartland of Aboriginal Australia - and neither the traditional owners, nor you, have been warned.

Under the guise of promoting economic development for indigenous Australians, the Federal Government wants to ram through new legislation this Tuesday that actually jeopardises future generations of Aboriginal livelihoods. It's quite possibly the most important law you've never heard of.The law will amend the iconic Land Rights Act, stripping away power from one of the only true representative bodies, the Land Councils, while pressuring Aboriginal communities to hand over control of their lands for 99 years. With profound disrespect, many of those who this new law affects most have not even been told. While the government claims the 99-year leases are voluntary, traditional owners are being cajoled into signing away their rights to their land just to secure basic services that we all deserve, like houses and schools. The Northern Territory is flourishing with indigenous culture and living languages. Yet, all Australians know there are also many deeply confronting problems - and all parties agree we must urgently find new ways forward in partnership. Land is the best asset that Aboriginal people have for economic development. Not one Australian economist has argued that taking land or leadership away will deliver positive economic results - even the conservative Minerals Council of Australia thinks the Government is on the wrong track with its attack on Land Councils.

The economic case has not been made. The social consequences are untested. And traditional owners have been excluded from this decision that will deeply affect them for generations. Please help stop this before it's too late. Tell your senator to delay the vote until they have done their due diligence as lawmakers, and sufficient time has been made for the traditional owners to be properly consulted.


Having just seen the exquisitely stunning Ten Canoes which needs to be seen at the cinema to appreciate the cinematography and sublimely precious land and culture of the top end, I felt compelled to share this email from GetUp with you all. For those non-Australians reading, you can't help right now but knowledge is power and if the international community know what's going on down here our governments will hopefully not be able to get away with it.


Blogger Bob Hughes said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:44 pm  
Blogger dani said...

bob, you're right - of course there are a few people like the guys you mentioned but i really believe that the great unwashed haven't a clue what's going on, nor the majority of people who it's going to affect and mainstream media isn't running stories on it either.

ten canoes is only related to this because i just saw the film today and so when i think about the possiblity that country like this may be handed over it makes my blood boil.

hope your weekend has been a good one too

9:06 pm  
Blogger Aimee "Roo" said...

Wow! I hope that people get up and do something to stop it.

5:08 am  

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