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Adventures of Blaksland and Lawless: A Manifesto

Adventures of Blaksland and Lawless: A Manifesto

May 5, 2016

Lorna Munro

We live in a patriarchal society founded on colonialism, where genocide has removed Aboriginal presence, culture, language kinship and ceremony.

In a lucky country, a democratic country, a country with a national anthem that still screams White Australian Policy.

In a country where we are told of all things we wouldn’t have if invasion never took place.

If you are Aboriginal, you can be killed by the state. If you are Aboriginal you can experience a poorer value of life.

If you are Aboriginal you will be discriminated against by the hour, every hour.

If you are Aboriginal you will have to prove who you are, where you come from, your bloodlines and position in the community to a white organisation for basic services, health and education and employment.

If you are an Aboriginal woman you are 45 times more likely to be a victim of domestic violence.‘Domestic and Family Violence’ on Creative Spirits <http://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/people/domestic-and-family-violence#axzz47jyzgAIU> Accessed Thu 5 May, 2016.

According to societal consensus, if you are an Aboriginal child you are ten times more likely to be abused and neglected.

If you are Aboriginal you are 40 times more likely to be admitted to hospital because of assault and violence if you are Aboriginal you are 6 times more likely to commit suicide.‘Aboriginal Suicide Rates’ on Creative Spirits <http://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/people/aboriginal-suicide-rates#axzz47jyzgAIU> Accessed Thu 5 May, 2016.

These things did not exist in the country prior to invasion. This is not what a democratic country should look like.

We invented democracy; egalitarianism was practiced here for many thousands, if not millions of years.

Aboriginal men and women both had roles to play. Melissa Lucashenko wrote that “people in Australia had many millennia to finesse systems of political power sharing before Cleisthenes came on the scene.”Lucashenko, M 2015, ‘The First Australian Democracy’ on Meanjin Quarterly, Volume 74, No 3 <https://meanjin.com.au/essays/the-first-australian-democracy/> Accessed Thu 5 May, 2016 We invented democracy. We had, what Bruce Pascoe writes, a “Great Australian Peace.”Pascoe, B, 2013, Dark Emu, Magabala Books, Broome, WA. This is evidenced in Captain Cook’s journals when he described Australia’s original inhabitants as “the happiest people upon the face of the earth”.Cook in Lucashenko, M 2015, ‘The First Australian Democracy’ on Meanjin Quarterly, Volume 74, No 3 <https://meanjin.com.au/essays/the-first-australian-democracy/> Accessed Thu 5 May, 2016

In this day and age we dream of an alternative reality that could still exist.

What would have happened if Aboriginal women colonised this space instead of white men?

We believe there would be no such thing as a starving child, there would be no such things as a power struggle because she would honour her mothers, elders and men. Discussions would take place instead of wars. Sustainability would replace capitalism and greed.

“Aboriginal people die young, fill jails and hospitals and asylums every week because of the incapacity of Australians to ask if there could be another, better way.”Lucashenko, M 2015, ‘The First Australian Democracy’ on Meanjin Quarterly, Volume 74, No 3 <https://meanjin.com.au/essays/the-first-australian-democracy/> Accessed Thu 5 May, 2016

It would have been more beneficial for everyone to be assimilated into our way of living than to a foreign idea of democracy that favours white men and not Aboriginal women.