Aboriginal People of Australia
I'm just I'm shot and we are the outside. We're podcasts at syndicated to bursting your bubbles and opening up to new perspectives. And this time we're GONNA be talking about something been learning about the past few months. Which is the rights of Indigenous People in Australia? If you've been listening to our PODCAST You know that just Ni- are from South Africa in the United States separately. I'm from the United States justice from South Africa and we are not aboriginal people or in any way But we were very passionate about doing an episode on this topic because we've seen a lot of injustices in the world and in our travels yet to expand that all. Yeah well yeah like Charlet said neither of us are from indigenous groups and you were both like the colonizers in much. Yeah but I think that's one of the reasons why it's so important for us to be talking about this And finding a way to like raise awareness for the indigenous groups because a lot of the time people don't think about that and even back home in South Africa were like we've had a really good peace movement. People still don't like acknowledge the true ramifications of colonialism that has been that has had on our country and it's the same thing that we've noticed in Australia is people are very unaware in a lot of places and very very ignorant and I think it's important that we educate ourselves and talk about it. Yeah one of the reasons. I'm very interested in. This topic is during two thousand sixteen. When the d'appel North Dakota access pipeline was happening and the injustices that I saw towards native Americans really inspired me to try and make a change and currently have been researching a bunch on that topic and have connected to connected it a lot towards environmental racism and so that is why I wanted to focus on this topic today in our podcast super important to talk about. We're going to be going through some of the main terms that we're going to be using because this is different to our usual content. You might not know what's actually going on First term to talk about is colonialism. Now there's a whole lot of different types of colonialism but essentially one will be talking about most is settler colonialism and this is when one group of people move to another place moves to someone else's land and basically tries to take over that land so that can be in the case of places like Stralia and the states where people showed up and then said this is our land and that means everyone who was living here before copy here anymore or it could be in the case of like my country and South Africa were a small minority moved there but then took complete control even though the majority of the population were the people that were living there before So that's kind of what colonialism is. It's this inclination of like trying to take over the world in a way. Colonizers are the people who call our Joan people for the first nation people of Australia. The oldest people who've lived on the land and fun fact average Australians are actually the oldest surviving culture in the world with like traditions that date back sixty thousand years which is insane pretty amazing. Yeah Yeah and the colonizers that actually came over were the British. They were so they needed a place to put their prisoners in their convicts. They found Australia and they were like sick. Let's put these people here and one of the reasons because of that. Australia is very difficult back then to live on for people who don't know the land because of the amount of things that can literally kill you hear. The prisoner is like a really good experiment. Sent here I because it was like well then we can live. Yeah no yeah. It's a it's an intense story so the first colonisation of Australia happened in seventeen eighty eight. That was the first time that people actually settled on this land and before this there were more than five hundred indigenous groups that inhabited Australia and the way it worked back then was like it wasn't just one country. It was five hundred countries essentially or maybe less or more depending on the groups but it was divided up in the similar way to Europe and there are about seven hundred fifty thousand people living on this land cultured. Like I said that's developed for sixty thousand years and there were over three hundred languages spoken in total whereas today only about one hundred and forty five languages spoken with only eighteen being strongly spoken by lots of people so you can see immediately like the decline of the culture in the effect that that's had on original people because of this one. The colonizers were coming over. It's hard it was very hard for them to unite as like an aboriginal front. Because there's so many different tribes and Like currently like when it was being called as they're probably like still wars going on between tribes then as well so it wasn't like everyone is a one aboriginal nation it's all divided separately into different groups And then when we get further into so we're GONNA talk a bit about like how it is now and why that's difficult even unite. Today one of the things that was actually released pricing to us. Because we've spent seven weeks or six weeks now in Australia. Learning about indigenous cultures learning about that kind of stuff and we spent a week in Alice. Springs the rest of the time we've been in Melbourne. And what I found really interesting is when we first arrived in Melbourne we were welcomed by one of the aboriginal groups were under people with a smoking ceremony which is a typical welcome into the land. That when we went to central Australia near Alice Springs. We were told by the indigents people. They're like they don't have the thing and it was kind of a weird moment for me because I automatically assumed like. Oh this is what they blame. Everyone does it. Yes accents but you eventually realize that like those three hundred five hundred nations like were completely different groups and spanning across the country completely different cultures which makes it really difficult to unite even today so aboriginal. Australians are still facing a ton of issues today a ton of oppression from the White Australians and this is largely in part due to just the history of this country and the history of the racism that so institutionalized into the country's law so when the British first arrived in Australia they said Yeah. This land is free to take. Because they didn't recognize the aboriginal people as Human Beings. They were classified as flora and fauna so basically plants animals not human beings and that sentiment existed for years and it let it has led to a lot of the attitudes that sill exists today even if people are no longer classified that way they're classified as human beings like a It's still rings true. In the way the government treats these people one really good example of this In central Australia. There's this thing called the green credit card. Basically if you're aboriginal half of your income comes in whatever form you want and the other half needs to go on this card that basically you can only spend on assesses which they classify as clothes and food alcohol or tobacco products or anything like that. So if you're thinking of buying a house nope And this is a very big issue because they're basically controlling like where where you go in life if half of your income is stuck on that card then like that's that's it you know and this is just one way that the government really keeps control of Aboriginal people whereas they justify it as A. We're helping them because like many of them have addiction problems and things like that one in reality like no colonizers introduced alcohol to them and introduce tobacco products. And it's really actually your fault that that may be a problem in some communities but the people should still have a right to choose because they're people and this is where the whole flora and fauna thing connects back. I think it's a real real problem like this idea. And it was something that we encountered a fair amount in the northern territory yet. Definitely yeah we got to spend time not only with aboriginal communities but also like the settlers there and it was quite harsh because it was an attitude of we know best yes coming from the white people which was pretty horrific and you can see that through like that green card. We know best what you should be doing with your money rather than dealing with addiction problems at the source. Would you most frequently accident in? My research comes from like loss of culture. Loss of tradition like the oppression that's been placed on these people definite instead of focusing on that. It's it's just putting a band aid over the problem. It's also stereotyped about the way that we see native people in the media as like a dying culture or historical figures and not recognizing that a lot of these cultures that we hear about in history. Books are still really prevalent today in society. They're just under recognized because a lot of people associate associate aboriginal and native people as very poor and in most cases they are because of the cycle of oppression that their governments have placed upon them. But they're still matter just as much and in fact more because they're the first people of the land. Once the aboriginal people were no longer classified as flora and fauna which I think was in the early nineteen hundreds. They were new rules put on them. Pretty much kept them in the same cycle of oppression and one of the things that happened. That's been very very detrimental to these. Communities is what's known as the stolen generations and essentially what that was was there. Is this whole idea of like the White Australia policy like making Australia completely white and wiping out aboriginal peoples cultures and entire communities. So they would do this through taking children away from their mothers and raising them in. What recalled missions which were just like dormitories? Where kids grow up as white. That was the goal if they grew up. Though because a lot of these missions the living conditions were so bad that a lot of these children died of diseases. Yeah the other thing by like making White Australia. The thing with aboriginal people is that everyone in Australia. Before colonizers came in had really dark skin there was no chance of that gene going away then when the colonizers came in and started having sexual interactions with other people That teens started to fade. And that's why a lot of aboriginal people could look white but they're aboriginal. It was pretty terrible And essentially there were a bunch of other policies that were put in place under white Australia like to eradicate aboriginal cultures so like there was this thing called the exemption certificate which basically stated that like so before they okay so there are a lot of other policies put in place at really really negatively affected aboriginal. Australian people and their culture like they were put there by the wider sterling government to take away these people's culture and an example of that was so in a lot of places they would take away their kids and put them in these missions to be raised as quote unquote white people and then they would put everybody else like those parents and other children who had stayed on like missions or reserves to live and they weren't allowed to leave but if they wanted to leave and actually earn money in like a way the same as the white Australian would they could get an exemption certificate which basically stated that if you didn't interact with your culture at all if he didn't speak your language if he didn't speak to any other aboriginal person you go live in the city and make money which yeah a lot of people would take that because you can't get anywhere without money you're stuck on the reserve like and it's terrible terrible living conditions however like that meant that. This culture was completely eradicated for a lot of people and this was mostly in the bigger cities not as much in central Australia where it took a lot longer to contact groups living out there but that definitely happened in places like Melbourne and Sydney and Person Business Brisbane and so on a really good movie to watch On this topic is the rabbit. Proof Fronts We watched it as a school super emotional but highly recommend watching it. If you're interested. Yeah the rubber prevents tells a true story of Some girls who were taken the missions and walked eight hundred kilometers to get back to their home and they did that multiple times to escape from the missions. Yep which is. It's actually quite a common story for people who were living in that time. Which is it shows. How much like the White Australians were like? We're helping these people. Were helping them. Were civilizing them quote unquote also force men to marry? Aboriginal Women. White men yeah. Yeah I mean there was the whole idea of like getting rid of like the gene that makes people's skin dark so I mean the sexual assault of Aboriginal Woman Was Insanely Han was disgusting and so much so that there would be white kids in the future which is Yeah it's harsh and these so called missions also actually happen in the US as well. We just had boarding schools for Americans which basically meant that they stole. Your children wouldn't let them speak their language. Take away any cultural significance whatsoever so flake. The boys had like long hair. They shave their head. Which is hugely disgraceful for people to do based on their culture and this is just like one of the things that they do there. But like yeah. They recently had these boarding schools that a lot of children as well died many diseases because of how they were kept and yeah. It was a lot like Australia which I wasn't when I came here and learned about that. I did some research before and I wasn't actually that surprised. Because a lot of the tools of oppression that people use pretty universal. Actually if you think about it Rape in many wars is like one way to beat the other side raping women. Because that's just one of the tools to win wars. That's how you can make the men give up a lot of sense Yeah Yeah it's interesting. How like all these colonized countries? No matter how different they are have so many of the same stories like even back home. Where like there was a white minority? That was in control. Like a lot of the same types of oppression for instance under the apartheid system like students were expect. All students who weren't white would go to schools were not of high quality that were basically training them to be a like labor force that wasn't super educated whereas the white kids had really high quality public education. And it's it's all the same thing it's all the same way of trying to undermine anyone who isn't white so that the white people can get ahead. Which is it's terrible but I think it's really important that we talk about it so that we know how to approach like going about fixing this because in Australia there are so many problems back home there so many problems and I'm sure there are in the states as well and we there needs to be Education so that we can go about getting better one of the solutions right now that they're trying to propose in Victoria is to have a treaty because Australia's actually the only Commonwealth country that does not have treaties for their business people which is insane when you think about it but also it's interesting to think about what treaties actually do for indigenous and native people in a lot of cases in the US trees are pretty disregarded when the government needs something If you WANNA take the dapple pipeline for example they put that in damaged a bunch of their historical burial and ceremonial sites including their water supply when it will inevitably spill So in Victoria when it comes to treaties. It's interesting to see what the indigenous people in Victoria think compared to the people in central Australia who are not fighting for a treaty to explain more. Yeah well as I understand it in central Australia. They have land rights so in the Northern Territory which is where Alice Springs which is where we were It's very very sparsely populated. Alice Springs is the biggest town. They're only think twenty thousand people around that number so it's like it's way easier for the government to impose a treaty there and say okay. The land here belong to the indigenous. People they choose what they want to do with it however one of the biggest problems that's actually going on in the northern territory. Is that even? Though people have land rights allow the time unless you have permission from the Government Yukon actually do anything on that land. So that's kind of the fight that central Australians have aboriginal I have is trying to get the right to control their land control. Their lives not have that green card that controls what they spend whereas in the more coastal cities in a place like Victoria in Melbourne. Where there's a lot more people the original trillions don't really have any acknowledgement. They don't really have any of that that they have in the central Australia. So what they're trying to get a tree that says that there will be a formal agreement between the government and the indigenous people so that they can have recognition of indigenous peoples history and the prior occupation of the land and basically just trying to ensure that these people get good treatment on the basis of them being indigenous But it's much harder when it comes to issues of land just due to the fact that there are millions of people living here and the government doesn't want to suddenly hanaway all that land so it's it's it's a it's a question of how much is is the government willing to go. Yeah definitely it's super complex and one of the questions that I think we asked with. Well how come. All indigenous people across Australia Unite. And decide what you want together on us. Because there's so many different things because it's very individualized to which indigenous people need what which things One example is that like for the reason. Why The bowery? People got their rights easier than indigenous. Australians is because it's one united culture things at Lake we. We've been doing a lot of comparison between countries and in New Zealand. The indigenous people are having a really good time. It's really recognized. It's in the culture. Even though that racism still exists. It's being worked on way way way. Better one of multiple arguments for that but like Charlotte's at one of those arguments is just like having one group whereas when it comes to Australia with the hundreds of groups of people Each one with their own elders and their leaders. Like how do you in languages only? Yeah exactly like an practices yet. It's so different like even the language here from the language a couple of hours away is probably quite different like different enough. That I don't know I don't know the to in detail but it makes it way harder to negotiate against the government when you're divided within yourselves and that was something we heard a lot from the average people but like any movement it's harder it's harder to fight against the power if you're divided so exactly exactly so when we're talking about these topics how. How is it that we can be good allies? I think that's where we're going to go next Yeah I think. That's probably the Best Lens we could approach this. From as settlers Allah's has sellers and as allies to indigenous peoples in our home countries and in Australia Well I also questioned quite a few people because I was curious like how can I be a good ally? What can I actually do? From the perspective of an indigenous person and one of the most common common answers I got was just listened to us like take the time to understand where that group is coming from and listen to what they want like. We conscious go ahead and do our own thing like we have to really listen to what the indigent indigenous. Australians and indigenous South Africans and native Americans on all those groups actually want from us before we can decide. What's best for them? Definitely and another thing is like when when? I was learning about this at least I felt really guilty at some points and being guilty in. This situation is a feeling that is very normal and that should happen but don't get stuck in feeling guilty. Actually do something about it. Don't really don't play like the victim in the way that you feel hurt about what your ancestors did because like get over. Your ancestors did that. Don't let your future children be more worse just in different ways. You know for sure for sure. It's often something that like when I talk about back home like people can get uncomfortable and kind of like. Oh well it's fine now. We don't have to talk about it when we do have to talk about it because we can't be stuck in this perpetual cycle of either being ignorant or being guilty and being so sorry that this is the way our people acted. Because that's not gonna get you anywhere like us. It's more important to be using white guilt and those kinds of things as fuel for our fire. One of the best ways to go about that is just like in your home. Region finding out what indigenous group lift their like what their practices are and reaching out to those people. And seeing. If there's any way you can form an ally ship with them and form like some kind of coalition and he may be wondering Charlotte. Just what do I do if I get stuck with someone talking to someone who might not really agree with what is right? One strategy that we learned about this term is having breakthrough conversations. Those are conversations were both parties. Come together and through the Lens of empathy and understanding Present information to one another in a non confronting way And both parties really need to be willing to listen. So do you. If you're trying to teach someone something you need to be willing to understand where they're coming from even if you don't necessarily agree with it because only then can you really be empathetic and give your point of view as well and hopefully it'll change some minds. Yeah that's it's it's difficult. Like when for instance a family member or someone starts saying something that's just so blatantly ignorant. We all got those. Yeah it's six on what's important is not wasting your energy on extremists. Because it's going to be super difficult to change their mind. But those people who are kind of in the middle who mean well but are uneducated or just wholesome beliefs that aren't as good like approaching them with the aspect of like. How can I help this person? Feel empathetic towards the coal is that I am empathetic towards. And if it doesn't happen overnight you're still planting the seed and people are. GonNa think about that afterwards and who knows you might be making some new change makers in the future. Yeah that's one of the best ways to go about like daily ally should because there's the matter of like really joining a minority or like marginalized group and really like being part of their protests in their movement in that kind of thing and then there's the smaller quieter things which is like helping turn people who are kind of ignorant racist towards another path because we can't expect marginalized groups to constantly oppress groups of constantly. Be Finding their oppressors. Because that's just way too emotional tiring for those groups but those of us who have that institutional power should be using it to help those people and like further the colts. So this episode we. Kinda just went through like basic history of Aboriginal Rights. We spoke a bit about. What's going on right now with communities both in Melbourne and in central Australia based on our own perspective and information. We've gathered while living in Australia and we went through a bit of how to be a good ally and the solutions that are happening today. So thank you for listening. Today's episode of the outside. And we hope that you've gathered in learn some new information and are able to maybe possibly have a conversation with someone as well. Yeah we'll be leaving some resources more into that more into ally ship and a few more concrete resources on history in the description so check those out of your interested probably better sources than we are. Yeah thank you.