OPINION: Why the attachment to a day of invasion?
THERE is perhaps no date in the Australian calendar more controversial than January 26.
Whether you celebrate it, or call it Invasion Day, the debate over one day in the year has divided our country in two.
The way I see it, and I speak in this context as a white woman whose ancestors arrived on ships, we live in an extraordinary country.
This has been exemplified in the most incredible way this last month.
Australians have an unbreakable spirit, we are stubborn, and we live in the most beautiful country in the world … she is sick.
For tens of thousands of years, indigenous Australians have kept this massive pocket of land safe. They have burned what needed burning, respected the waterways, appreciated the fauna and flora, marked this country as their own – and it is.
When Captain Cook arrived on the shores of Botany Bay all those years ago, he had no idea what the future of this country would look like, but the Australia we see today is one that is divided at a time that it should be united.
There are 365 days of the year, so why do we chose to continue to honour a day mired in controversy?
Mate, we could celebrate our beautiful country on May 8.
We could chose a date of significance to our nation’s traditional owners.
We could celebrate it on the day Celeste Barber started her $50m+ fundraiser, or the day Steve Irwin or Heath Ledger died.
This weekend, whether you find yourself at the pub, enjoy the long weekend by heading away, are awarded for your commitment to your community, or don’t do anything at all, I ask you to take a minute and appreciate the 80,000+ years of culture and history that have formed this great nation and ask why we are so attached to this date.