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Reparations for aboriginies in Australia

 
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Feb, 2008 06:50 pm
dlowan wrote:


Why?


You simply keep repeating that one cannot, and you clearly feel very emotional about it.


There are only so many ways to explain a basic concept.

Let's try this, you screw-up at work. In a meeting a coworker chimes in to all with "I apologize for dlowan screwing that up". How does that make you feel? Dismissed? Violated? like they had no right to say that, like they had made themselves your superior?
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Feb, 2008 07:09 pm
hawkeye10 wrote:
dlowan wrote:


Why?


You simply keep repeating that one cannot, and you clearly feel very emotional about it.


There are only so many ways to explain a basic concept.

Let's try this, you screw-up and work. In a meeting a coworker chimes in to all with "I apologize for dlowan screwing that up". How does that make you feel? Dismissed? Violated? like they had not right to say that?



You see, this is exactly where I think you are reacting as though the situation were far different than it is.



Individual Australians are not responsible and should not feel guilty. "Sorr" does not have to be an expression of shame or guilt. It can be an expression of empathy, as in "I'm sorry to hear your friend died" or "I'm sorry you got hurt in that car accident"




In any case the apology was not made on behalf of the Australian people but rather limited to the Australian Parliament.



This is not an issue such as your analogy would make it out to be.



This is a duly elected Parliament saying sorry for the way in which the duly elected Parliaments of my country have conducted themselves towards indigenous Australians.


And, in fact, even your analogy is not as clear and simple as you think it.


For instance, if I truly screwed up at work, my management might well add organizational apologies to my apology to a truly aggrieved client, as they would take some responsibility, not for my individual actions, but for my behaviour as their representative. The world is not as simplistically individualistic as you make it out to be.

This would actually be fairly common practice in businesses, I believe. I actually am currently in possession of TWO letters of apology from connected businesses, for a mistake which was made by one, and which both then failed to correct in a timely manner, and which had potentially very serious consequences. I have no idea whose the individual mistakes were, but the companies have apologised on behalf of the company.


Would you feel aggrieved by this?



You are happy for governments to acknowledge past wrongs, but not for them to acknowledge their sorrow for past wrongs, that continue to have devastating consequences upon people today, and upon their as yet unborn children??????????
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Feb, 2008 07:26 pm
Quote:
We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians


Unlike the word "sorry" the word "apology" can not be used without the speaker accepting blame or guilt. If you can not explain how the current government was responsible for what they apologized for then the word "apologise" is empty.

Quote:
This would actually be fairly common practice in businesses, I believe. I actually am currently in possession of TWO letters of apology from connected businesses, for a mistake which was made by one, and which both then failed to correct in a timely manner, and which had potentially very serious consequences. I have no idea whose the individual mistakes were, but the companies have apologised on behalf of the company.


Would you feel aggrieved by this?


I would not if it was my boss or my employer doing the apology. We are already in a negotiated dominant/submissive relationship (employer/employee), they have that right. My co worker who is supposed to be my equal does not however.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Feb, 2008 07:41 pm
hawkeye10 wrote:
Quote:
We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians


Unlike the word "sorry" the word "apology" can not be used without the speaker accepting blame or guilt. If you can not explain how the current government was responsible for what they apologized for then the word "apologise" is empty.

Quote:
This would actually be fairly common practice in businesses, I believe. I actually am currently in possession of TWO letters of apology from connected businesses, for a mistake which was made by one, and which both then failed to correct in a timely manner, and which had potentially very serious consequences. I have no idea whose the individual mistakes were, but the companies have apologised on behalf of the company.


Would you feel aggrieved by this?


I would not if it was my boss or my employer doing the apology. We are already in a negotiated dominant/submissive relationship (employer/employee), they have that right. My co worker who is supposed to be my equal does not however.



Let's just start with this bit:

"Unlike the word "sorry" the word "apology" can not be used without the speaker accepting blame or guilt. "

Huh?

Why?
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 23 Feb, 2008 07:50 pm
Quote:
a·pol·o·gy /əˈpɒlədʒi/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[uh-pol-uh-jee] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
-noun, plural -gies. 1. a written or spoken expression of one's regret, remorse, or sorrow for having insulted, failed, injured, or wronged another: He demanded an apology from me for calling him a crook.
2. a defense, excuse, or justification in speech or writing, as for a cause or doctrine.
3. (initial capital letter, italics) a dialogue by Plato, centering on Socrates' defense before the tribunal that condemned him to death.
4. an inferior specimen or substitute; makeshift: The tramp wore a sad apology for a hat.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/apology

Find a def of the word from a recognized source that does not demand admission of responsibility when the word "apology" is used in the context of the Australian government's statement. You will not, because it does not exist.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 01:13 am
hawkeye10 wrote:

Find a def of the word from a recognized source that does not demand admission of responsibility when the word "apology" is used in the context of the Australian government's statement. You will not, because it does not exist.


As reluctant as I am to try to help you reduce this into your logomachy pretext you are simply mistaken.


First try:

http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/apology?view=uk

Second try:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apology

You are wrong, they do not just exist but appear to be plentiful as the first two dictionaries I sampled contain definitions of an apology (within the context of this subject) that do not require personal guilt.

You seem to be translating an already poor argument for your positions in American reparation debates onto a situation you have no familiarity with and exacerbating the fundamental ignorance of the situation with an arbitrary definition of "apology" that you use to, in effect, indict the general notion of an institutional apology.

Ok, so if your only point is that you are the odd duck who has a big problem with institutional apologies and still don't know anything at all about the topic being discussed then I suppose you won't be able to contribute to our edification beyond reaffirming that there are people who have a problem with apologies and can't come up with good reasons for their visceral reaction.

Attempts to articulate a sound ratiocination for the emotive response, as usual, center on stubbornly held theory based on arbitrary interpretations of language, law and ethics.

In short, the apology is wrong because your selective definition of the word "apology" conveniently precludes an appropriate use of the word in this context you object to. It conveniently ignores colloquial use of the word, definitions in lexicons that don't support this "dictionary argument" and the very concept of institutional responsibility.

Now cherry-picking definitions and moving the goalposts is your prerogative, but pretending that the teams and spectators who scratch their heads and wonder why are mad is simply risible.

Take your reasoning here all the way and you simply don't accept institutional responsibility at all. As has been said, society isn't as individualistic as you make it out to be, nor can it possibly be.
0 Replies
 
dadpad
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 01:33 am
Hawkeye: We've pretty much done and said it all before, first hand, here in Australia over the last 10 years. all the points you have and are going to bring up we've discussed ad nauseum. There is nothing new you can offer.

Sorry was a central and high profile plank to our new governments campaign for election.
The collective and democratic will of the people was heard.
Of course I was not personally responsible for individual cases of maltreatment.
The collective people of Australia via the governments that represented us made decisions and acted in a way that caused physical and emotional hurt to people unable to defend themselves.

We have offered an apology in that context.
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 01:54 am
I acknowledge that definitions of the word can be found which make the apology a statement of acknowledgement and regret only.... would make it a finding of fact as I suggested must be done plus a statement of being sorry. If it became clear to me that the government used the word "apologize" in this way, and meant to imply no responsibility for the abuses, then I would stand down on my objection. I however do not believe that the Government did in anyway disavow responsibility, and if they did not my objection on all the grounds previously stated still stand.
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 02:04 am
dadpad wrote:
Hawkeye: We've pretty much done and said it all before, first hand, here in Australia over the last 10 years. all the points you have and are going to bring up we've discussed ad nauseum. There is nothing new you can offer.

Sorry was a central and high profile plank to our new governments campaign for election.
The collective and democratic will of the people was heard.
Of course I was not personally responsible for individual cases of maltreatment.
The collective people of Australia via the governments that represented us made decisions and acted in a way that caused physical and emotional hurt to people unable to defend themselves.

We have offered an apology in that context.


If you had not violated the sovereignty of the previous governments and of the dead I might say have at it, but apparently you did. I am glad that you all talked it out, even though I think you made a mistake in the end. You do as a nation have a right to do as you will. I have a right to object when it looks to me like democratic peoples have gone astray. My democratic society can not help but to be harmed when others keep running over the sovereignty of the individual. we have a problem with that here as well, so I am not simply casting stones your way, except I am on this thread.
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 02:21 am
I have made my objection, and would ask that it be noted. I think that we are done with the last couple of days worth of debate. Thank you to those who engaged with me.

I am out on this one.
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 06:35 am
hawkeye10 wrote:
I have made my objection, and would ask that it be noted. I think that we are done with the last couple of days worth of debate. Thank you to those who engaged with me.

I am out on this one.


As Kev said, we made much profit from our ancestors disposession of this nation from it's original inhabitants. If we are willing to accept the rewards our ancestors gained from their actions we should be willing to accept the responsibilities.

Do you think that ancestors of germans who became wealthy on the gold fillings taken from exterminated jews have nothing to feel guilty or sorry about?
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 24 Feb, 2008 12:31 pm
hawkeye10 wrote:
I acknowledge that definitions of the word can be found which make the apology a statement of acknowledgement and regret only.... would make it a finding of fact as I suggested must be done plus a statement of being sorry. If it became clear to me that the government used the word "apologize" in this way, and meant to imply no responsibility for the abuses, then I would stand down on my objection. I however do not believe that the Government did in anyway disavow responsibility, and if they did not my objection on all the grounds previously stated still stand.




And still make no sense...but still...







Interesting tidbit re "the street":


The following motion was endorsed unanimously by all divisions of the
Construction Forestry Mining & Energy Union (CFMEU) at their National
Bi-annual Conference at Brighton Beach Sydney today 22/2/08.

"That the CFMEU demand the immediate repeal of the Northern Territory
Emergency Response Legislation; we further demand that Federal, State and
Territory Governments sit down and enter into respectful dialogue with
Aboriginal people in their communities and then act alongside and in
support of Aboriginal people in keeping with the "Little Children are
Sacred" report."





This from an Aboriginal organisation whose email tree I am on:


Following Kevin Rudd's apology there has been a marked wave of
> progressive sentiment on issues of Indigenous justice throughout the
> country. After 11 long years of setbacks and blatant racism under
> Howard, there has finally been an important step in the right
> direction.
>
> Yet there is still much to be done. Up to two thousand people rallied
> the day before the apology against the ongoing injustice of the NT
> intervention, with the support of a broad range of Aboriginal
> organisations, unions, human rights and social justice groups. A
> meeting of the National Aboriginal Alliance took forward the project
> of building a strong political voice for Aboriginal people. People
> from affected communities gave moving testimony:
>
> Eileen Shaw, resident of Mt Nancy town camp argued, "These laws are
> like apartheid South Africa", referring to the race based 'welfare
> quarantine' which has seen 50% of all Centrelink payments to residents
> of 'prescribed Aboriginal communities' withheld.
>
> Many other women from 'prescribed communities' spoke of the intense
> shame they felt having to use the store cards "when everyone else has
> cash", or the inability of many people, especially in remote areas, to
> even use the cards, leading to an effective halving of incomes, mass
> shortages of food and an exodus to population centres.
>
> The cry for immediate review of the intervention has gone unanswered,
> the Racial Discrimination act is still suspended, Aboriginal land has
> been compulsorily acquired and Non-aboriginal business managers
> continue to have extraordinary powers, referred to as "analogous to a
> police state" by many from communities.
>
> There has been a call for broad, diverse rallies on the first
> anniversary of the intervention in July. There are actions being
> organised at Centrelinks throughout the country on March 13th,
> highlighting the issue of welfare quarantines.
>
> Come along to this forum to help build our power & to discuss the way
> forward for the movement for Aboriginal rights.
>
> For more info contact:
> Greg
> Paddy
>
> aboriginalrightscoalition.wordpress.com




And halle ******* luljah:



National Indigenous Times:
Govt preparing to endorse UN Declaration
http://www.nit.com.au/breakingnews/story.aspx?id=14034
18 Feb 08: "The federal government is preparing to endorse
the landmark United Nations Declaration on the Rights of
Indigenous Peoples, after opposition by the former Howard
government."

TEXT OF UN DECLARATION:

Text of United Nations Declaration on the Rights of
Indigenous Peoples [A/61/L.67] as adopted by the United
Nations General Assembly on 13 September 2007:

English:
http://www.tebtebba.org/tebtebba_files/ipr/undrip/FinalDec/UNDRIP_EN.pdf
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 25 Feb, 2008 09:46 pm
hawkeye10 wrote:
I have made my objection, and would ask that it be noted. I think that we are done with the last couple of days worth of debate. Thank you to those who engaged with me.

I am out on this one.


hawkeye10,

I think your position and your objection make more sense for the kind of reparations debate the US had than this particular case, though I'll readily admit that the lines are blurred (the case of the Stolen Generation is often mixed into a larger history of aboriginal abuse for example).

I think it makes a lot less sense in this scenario with specific abuses perpetrated by relatively recent governments but wanted to note that I've enjoyed reading you on many threads on able2know over the last few days, so don't let my disagreement with notions of individual sovereignty and institutional responsibility with you dissuade you from participation as that would be a loss to all.
0 Replies
 
vikorr
 
  1  
Reply Sat 1 Mar, 2008 12:28 am
Hi Hawkeye,

One of the things you'll find about our Prime Minister apologising to the Aboriginal Peoples, is that he represents two different groups - the PM represents both the Peoples of Australia, and The Australian Government.

The peoples of Australia have nothing to apologise for (perhaps excepting some old parliamentarians who passed certain laws)

The Government of Australia is an institution that has existed, in one form or another since settlement (and in it's current form, since federation in around 1907).

The Government is the institution that has passed laws that have been highly detrimental to the Aboriginal peoples (the most obvious being the massacres of Aboriginal peoples. One State - Tasmania, rid itself of Aboriginals completely), up until the Anti Discrimination Act of 1971. The vast majority of aboriginals today exist in a cycle of poverty. A rather large contibuting factor to them being a cycle of poverty has been government laws through the centuries.

It is not 'a minority' that has been affected, but the vast majority.

The Government, in my view, certainly owed them an apology. The people of Australia don't owe them an apology.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 3 Mar, 2008 03:25 pm
vikorr wrote:

The Government, in my view, certainly owed them an apology. The people of Australia don't owe them an apology.


This gets tricky and boils down to a very core concept of responsibility in society: In a Democracy, to what degree are the people responsible for their government's actions?
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Mon 3 Mar, 2008 03:52 pm
Robert Gentel wrote:


This gets tricky and boils down to a very core concept of responsibility in society: In a Democracy, to what degree are the people responsible for their government's actions?


In a true democracy the people are the government.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 4 Mar, 2008 01:40 am
Yes.
0 Replies
 
 

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