It's about time! But credit to Kevin Rudd who has done what John Howard has refused to do for many many years and he today apologised to the Stolen Generation.
For those who are not aware, in the 1950's the Australian government of the day removed many Aboriginal children from their families and raised them in white Australian orphanages and foster homes for their "benefit". Essentially the Anglo-Saxon government deemed Aboriginals to be inferior and not deserving of raising their own children in their own culture.
Many years later, the Aboriginal people still feel hurt and pain at that program and families were ripped apart and never recovered.
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd today apologised for the events unreservedly and I applaud that.
Having said that though, I received an email today that was perhaps the most vindictive and callous thing I have ever read before and I paste it below. Bear in mind I dont agree with any of these sentiments:
AUSTRALIAN APOLOGY TO THE ABORIGINAL POPULATION
We apologise for giving you doctors and free medical care,
which allows you to survive and multiply so that you can demand
We apologise for helping you to read and teaching you the English language and thus we opened up to you the entire European civilisation, thought and enterprise.
We feel that we must apologise for building hundreds of homes for you, which you have vandalised and destroyed.
We apologise for giving you law and order which has helped prevent you from slaughtering one another and using the unfortunate for food purposes.
We apologise for developing large farms and properties, which today feed your people, where before, you had the benefits of living off the land and starving during droughts.
We apologise for providing you with warm clothing made of fabric to replace that animal skins/dogs you used before.
We apologise for building roads and railway tracks between cities and building cars so that you no longer have to walk over harsh terrain.
We apologise for paying off your vehicle when you fail to pay the instalments.
We apologise for giving you free travel anywhere, whenever.
We apologise for giving each and every member of your family $100.00 and free travel to attend an aboriginal funeral.
We apologise for not charging you rent on any lands when white people have to pay.
We apologise for giving you interest free loans.
We apologise for developing oil wells and minerals, including gold and diamonds which you never used and had no idea of their value.
We apologise for developing Ayers rock and Kakadu, and handing them over to you so that you get all the money.
We apologise for allowing taxpayers money paid towards daughters' wedding ($8,000.00 each daughter) We apologise for giving you $1.7 billion per year for your 250,000 people,
which is $48,000.00 per aboriginal man, woman and child.
We apologise for working hard to pay taxes that finance your welfare, medical care, education, etc to the tune of $1.2 billion each year.
We apologise for you having to approach the aboriginal affairs department to verify the above figures For the trouble you will have identifying the "uncle toms" in your own community who are getting richer and leaving some of you living in squalor and poverty.
We do apologise. We really do. We humbly beg your forgiveness for all the above sins.
We are only too happy to take back all the above and return you to the paradise of the "outback", whenever you are ready.
Until we Australian's can stop having this sort of attitude things will never get better. Until people can learn to appreciate another persons view, we as a "species" will never improve ourselves and wars and conflicts will never end.
I hope that Kevin Rudd's speech will be the first step of stamping out racism in this country. I hope its the first step to stopping political parties such as One Nation (warning: Redneck alert) playing the race card in our Federal Parliament.
I also hope it is a step in bring more tolerance not only to race but also religion and a sign that this new government is not going to war anymore for American foreign policy (read Oil).
To the person who wrote that email, I hope you have a good hard look at yourself.