On the same day as Tony Abbott announced a decision to close more than 100 remote indigenous communities, he compounded injury with insult (literally) by justifying this move as the defunding of a ‘lifestyle choice’.
To live on Country is obviously not a lifestyle choice. To live on Country is a right and a responsibility and also, get your goddamn white man shoes off the land.
Here are some Indigenous voices:
At the ABC an article that has a lot of quotes from people, including this truthy beauty:
The chairman of WA’s Kimberley community of Djarindjin, Brian Lee, said it was a cultural obligation to live on traditional country and it could not be a “lifestyle choice”
“We are obliged to look after our country and that’s why a lot of us are out here on country,” Mr Lee said.
“Unless you live out here, you really can’t make any judgement on that.
It’s not that hard a concept. Even if you move it away from cultural stuff (you shouldn’t), it’s still about a sense of place and stewardship of the land, and how are we still in a place where white people think their science is always right; their politics is always right; their traditions are always right?
By Kate Galloway and temporarily outside the paywall at the Alternative Law Journal, Indigenous dispossession in the 21st Century: The Northern Frontier.
Not Indigenous voices, but excellent, at SBS Comedy: Indigenous Australians Still Not Thrilled About ‘Lifestyle Choice’ To Take Their Land.
Reports from various Indigenous leaders indicate that first Australians are still not thrilled about colonisers making the ‘lifestyle choice’ to steal their land and kill their people.
Though understanding it was the invader’s personal decision, Indigenous elders noted that the cost of being systematically oppressed greatly outweighed the benefits, namely due to there being no benefits.
“It certainly is a lifestyle choice,” said one indigenous elder. “Some people want to become plumbers, some want to be electricians, some want to attempt to steal sovereignty from a native people.