I have often postulated, that the biggest problem with mobs, is the intelligence of the mob is often lower than the individual intelligence of the people who form it. The mob problem is often typified in social media particularly in forums like twitter, where any debate is limited to 140 characters. The most recent example is the report today in the Australian Aldi pulls ‘racist’ garments from stores. The purported racist garments were T shirts s that were “emblazoned with the words “Australia – established in 1788“.
I am not a racist; I am not very patriotic, but I am not ashamed that I am Australian. I am pleased I live in a country with a strong legal constitution and a stable government. The Australian Nation I am proud to be part, is not the continent itself, but all of its citizens, who compromise many ethnic backgrounds, and with different religious beliefs but who in the most part appreciate the cultural diversity and respecting different beliefs.
The Commonwealth of Australia was inaugurated by an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom on 1 January 1901 The inauguration of the Commonwealth, followed the earlier establishment of the States. 1 January 1901 is not when Australia as a nation was established. England wisely but over a rather long period of time gradually seeded all power to the Australian people. There is no defining “independence day” as there is in the US. The power of the UK Parliament to legislate over Australia was not finally terminated until the enactment of the AUSTRALIA ACT 1986 in 1986. However the seed of our nation began on 26 January 1788 when Captain Arthur Phillip arrived in Australia with 11 Convict Ships, at Sydney Cove and who became the first Governor of the Colony. It may not have been the most auspicious beginning but it begins our constitutional history as a Nation. That is the day that Australia as a Nation began to form, that is the day Australia as a Nation was first established. That is why it is celebrated.
The National Australia Day Council recognises the unique status our indigenous people. They recognise that “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and some non-Aboriginal and Torres Strait IslanderAustralians may have mixed feelings about celebrating this day. January 26 has multiple meanings: it is Australia Day and it is also, for some, Survival Day or Invasion Day. We can honour all that is great about Australia and being Australian, remember the sufferings and our shortcomings and commit to build a more cohesive and inclusive nation. We do so with an underlying spirit of optimism.”
All Australians, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, should celebrate Australia Day, as being the day that Australia as a Nation which we are all lucky to be a part first became to be established.
The twitter furure against Aldi was wrong. It only demonstrates the mob problem without fully understanding what the Australian Nation is about.
Aldi should not have apologised, Adli should not have withdrawn the products.
Happy Australia Day
JDC 8 January 2014