By Colin Tatz
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Extra info for Aboriginal Suicide Is Different: A Portrait of Life and Self-Destruction
It is as if Aborigines, like new immigrants, have ‘just arrived’; and, to share in the ‘just’ and ‘equal’ society, they must compete on equal terms. The Aboriginal question is thus merged into a ‘multicultural society’, one in which Aborigines are no different from recent immigrants. ) Past violations are disregarded, thereby absolving anyone from atonement or compensation. On election, Howard began a systematic campaign against the ‘black armband’ interpretation of Australian history. Priority, he said, should be given to health, literacy and other practical programs.
They also tried, with little success, to Christianise the inmates according to their varying dogmas and doctrines. The eighteenth-century English radical philosopher, Jeremy Bentham, has bequeathed us succinct phrasing for such ‘penitentiaryhomes’—ones in which the objectives are ‘safe custody, confinement, solitude, forced labour and instructions’ (Tatz 1999, 22). The special laws show that the ‘protections’ which parliaments had in mind were as much from outside intruders as from the Aborigines themselves.
Or is it a means of reparation and restitution for the depredations and dispossessions of the past? For all Aborigines, the phrase signifies at least two things: first, the giving back of something, as opposed to two centuries of ‘things’ being taken away; second, and inherent in the first, a signal recognition that they exist and have some legitimate claims on the nation-state. What a Labor government initiated in 1973, a Liberal government concluded with the passing of the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976.
Aboriginal Suicide Is Different: A Portrait of Life and Self-Destruction by Colin Tatz