My fellow Australians,
Who the hell are we?
We are one of the most urbanised nations on earth, over 80% of us live in cities and those cities are all on the sea, almost the entire population lives within 50 kilometres of the ocean. That doesn’t include us renegade Castlemainiacs though does it? Yet the ‘quintisential Ozy’ lives in a place called the outback. We call it that because we are all hugging the coast and looking out to sea. At first we were searching for a ship from the motherland, now we scan the horizon for a glimpse of the real world that goes on somewhere beyond the horizon. Meanwhile our alter ego sits tall in the saddle of her magnificent steed, one hand to her sweaty brow, scanning the horizon of the red earth searching for fat cows and lost sheep.
We see ourselves as peace loving, generous, tolerant people yet is that how the world sees us?
The rest of the world sees a country constantly at war. We have been at war with both Iraq and Afganistan for over 7 years now. We here in Sleepy hollow may have forgotten about those wars but I can assure you the people of Iraq and Afganistan have not, nor has anybody else.
The rest of the world sees a nation hell bent on denying asylum to some of the most desperate people on earth, fleeing conflicts half of which we have created, while we debate whether to tow their boats back out to sea and use them for target practice.
The rest of the world sees a nation that treats its Indiginous people like shit. Always has and always will. We may believe we are trying really hard to ameliorate their endless suffering, but the world, I’m afraid, sees only our complete and utter failure, Why do we treat them so? Is it punishment for making us feel guilty?
We are one of the wealthiest nations on earth yet we sit back and watch our nearest neighbour Papua New Guinea descend into barbarism. We attempt to diddle our other neighbour East Timor out of their oil. We turn away Pacific Islanders desperately seeking somewhere to go after their countries disappear under the rising seas. A problem we have helped to create and are unwilling to fix.
Maybe it is time to administer a few drops of Optical Viagra and take a good hard look at our selves.