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Monday, January 25, 2016

Australia Day 2016

Anthony Mundine

For indigenous Australians, Australia Day, is not a day for celebration. They call it 'Invasion Day' and won't forgive us for the wrongs their people suffered at the hands of our ancestors.

Professional fighter Tony Mundine's grandmother was part of the stolen generation, as a child, she was taken away from her parents by the government to be educated in the ways of the white man.

The boxer said the national public holiday should have two parts - one to celebrate what Australia has become today but another mourning period to remember how the traditional owners were treated.

"There has to be a remembrance in the morning till about 12pm about the truth of the past and what happened to indigenous people, and how the genocide and everything else took place in order to claim this land.  And in the afternoon, we celebrate the unity and harmony of where we are at today" he said.

In 1999, Tony Mundine converted to Islam.  After three years of reading the Koran, he abandoned Christianity because of its association with colonization.

Following his conversion to Islam, Tony claims he prays five times a day, doesn't eat pork, abstains from alcohol and tobacco, avoids the 'trappings of materialism' and fasts over Ramadan.  He is eager to introduce other Aboriginal men to Islam, which he believes has strengthened his character.

So once again we feel the anger and resentment of our Aboriginal people as Australia Day approaches.  Tomorrow there will be barbecues and celebrations right around the country but for those who can't or won't forgive, it's a national day of mourning.