But do you think that the reparations issue is gonna get ugly?
Of course it will - though probably not too ugly, which would involve an overly large amount hypocrisy.
Most people recognise the futility of such compensation, even if they would claim it themselves. Free money almost never lasts, and in the vast majority of cases, the person is in a worse of place afterwards, than they were at the start (numerous Lotto studies have shown this, though I've never saved a single link)...for aborigines I think similar consequences would be an even higher percentage of such 'failures' because of the comparative base levels of education and money nouse.
People also recognise greed in many claims, and what they will see is aborigines as a group being greedy (never mind most would do the same). How can that be good for the unity of the country?
Then there will be the issue of comparative justice among the plaintiffs, which each/many thinking them more deserving than the next, quite probably creating division within their own ranks.
And the ones that live on reserves where crime is through the roof...if they bought something nice, do you think such would last long before their dwelling got broken into, or they become victims of a violent crime or something similar - due to jealousy of sudden wealth?
I personally think compensation would be detrimental to the vast majority of aborigines. I have no grudge with them claiming, because that's the way the system works - everyone is entitled to sue for such...but it's also a system that I think is wrong and detrimental to society, and, to aborigines in particular (and in relation to the subject compo claims), will be even more detrimental
I think you have said pretty much what I think.......though I understand that individuals abused once taken have (and always have had) the legal right to make a complaint about illegal treatment (such as sexual abuse by carers etc.), and to claim compensation for that. I assume they also have the right to sue organisations that provided care, where there was abuse, for failure of duty of care.
The welfare folk have been sued quite frequently by foster kids placed in abusive environments, and the yard stick is whether the departments have acted in accord with the practices prevailing at the time.
That's often been tough for people (the adoptive aunt of a friend of mine killed herself after failing in just such a suit) because the CURRENT index of suspicion re, for instance, sexual abuse, is so high. When the woman I speak of was adopted out, ignorance of sexual abuse was the norm, and the fact that the adoptive father had convictions for sexual offences in the UK was neither known to the Australian authorities, nor was it expected practice to check such things.
I also completely understand the feelings of aboriginal of folk who feel entitled to reparations. Sigh.
I have seen so much damage done to folk seeking compensation for so many things, and I cannot argue against your points. personally, I have very consciously NOT gone down the path of Workcover for injuries for which I was legally likely entitled to claim it, but where pre-existing injury would have complicated things. I'd rather pay from my own pocket than get into the horror of the adversarial system. But then, I CAN pay.
I also take your point about a culture of suing and blame paralysing good people. In my field, for instance, it is so easy to get into practice that is more about bum-covering than anything useful and courageous. However, it is also salutory and necessary to remember, always, about those good intentions and the road to hell!
It will be interesting to watch this all play out.
By the way....is anyone else reeling from the mistakes Brendan Nelson made?
These people were in government for ELEVEN YEARS, and he hasn't grasped, nor had advisers who grasped, the ways in which his speech was deeply distressing? Nor that you do not use the stories with which aboriginal people entrust you unless you have their permission and support in doing so????
We were discussing the speech at work, and I wondered if these fairly comfortable white men have not been so traumatised as they have been exposed to the true horror of so many people's lives, that they have spoken more from traumatic re-enactment than from the more integrated parts of themselves??????
Although, as a doctor, you would think that Brendan would have been exposed to the harsher realities of life?