Thursday, December 15, 2005

white Australia still out there

Spooner in The Age

Marilyn Lake, a professor in the history program at La Trobe University, writes in The Age that

"Militant nationalism also breeds racism. The White Australia Policy has been officially buried — the infamous dictation test was abolished in 1958 — but true "Aussies" are still assumed to be white. We no longer nail our colours to the mast, but the whiteness of national identity is everywhere evident. The reverberations of founding national policies resound down the years; there is an odd resonance between the exclusions that marked the first decade of the 20th century and events 100 years on.

In 1908, the nationalist Bulletin adopted the logo "Australia for the White Man". Its call echoes in the text messages and political slogans of our own time. The Coalition Government has been to the fore in promoting the idea of national values. It's time, now, for it to show some manly leadership and declare, in the face of the mob, that multiculturalism is a core Australian value."

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