To protest Invasion Day a convoy set out from the northern rivers on Wednesday heading to Canberra to make their point that January 26 doesn’t celebrate all Australians.
‘A bunch of the local mob are driving to Canberra to protest,’ said Mullum local Murray Bickley (AKA Muzz) who is leading the convoy in his truck.
Four cars and a truck are taking 25 people to Canberra to join the national protest that marks Invasion Day highlighting that for many people this is not a time of celebration but a time of mourning.
Change the date
Local Arakwal representative Delta Kay is also calling for the date of Australia Day to be moved. Ms Kay has spoken out and suggested the actual day that Australia was created by becoming a Federation, January 1, 1901, is a more appropriate day to celebrate.
This was supported by local Greens MP Tamara Smith who points out that, ‘Celebrating the anniversary of the British empire’s invasion of Australia is for many people both cruel and ironic. Cruel because it is the date that the fiction of terra nullius was written into our history books and inscribed upon the lives of Aboriginal people
‘Far from “land belonging to no one” just under 1 million Aboriginal people lived, loved and called Australia home in 1788. It is an ironic celebration because it only speaks to some Australians.
‘The date for Australia Day has changed several times but conservative politicians would have us believe it is unmoveable and that to even have the conversation about what rings true for all who live and love here is un-Australian,’ she said.
‘Blackmailing councils and mayors who want to hold citizenship ceremonies on a day that isn’t painful and insensitive flat lines any chance of a national debate on the things that matter to us all.
‘We need a Treaty for Aboriginal people and self-determination now and changing the date is the first step.’