Wednesday, January 30, 2008


"Rabbit Proof Fence," 2002 film about the stolen children of Australia

Photo by Benjamin John Doman

Aboriginal musical instrument, the Didgeridoo

The Aboriginal Flag was designed by Harold Thomas, an artist and an Aboriginal, in 1971.

Australia Pledges Early Apology to Stolen Generation Aborigines
By Ed Johnson

Jan. 28 (Bloomberg) -- The Australian government pledged to apologize as soon as possible to the "stolen generation'' of Aborigines, who were forcibly removed from their families in the 1900s as part of a policy of assimilation.

"We do see this as a very important issue,'' Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin told reporters today. "We want to do it right, we want to do it respectfully.''

She declined to comment on a report in the Daily Telegraph newspaper that Prime Minister Kevin Rudd plans to make the apology when Parliament opens on Feb. 12. Elders from the local Ngunnawal tribe may perform a welcome ceremony in Parliament for the newly elected lawmakers, the newspaper said, without saying where it got the information.

From 1910 to 1970, between 10 percent and 30 percent of indigenous children were removed from their families and communities and placed in institutions, church missions or the homes of white Australians, according to a government- commissioned report published in 1997.

The inquiry found that many forcibly removed children lost their cultures, languages, heritage and lands and recommended reparation be made.



"Walkabout" filmed in 1971.
This film takes it's title from the Aboriginal custom of spending time in the wilderness.

"Rabbit-Proof Fence," 2002.
Three girls, kidnapped by the government (a common practice), in 1931, escape after being plucked from their homes to be trained as domestic staff, and set off on a trek across the Outback.

"The Last Wave," 1977, stars Richard Chamberlain. A Sydney lawyer has more to worry about than higher-than-average rainfall when he is called upon to defend five Aboriginals in court.

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