The Instigator
clarew
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
moushic
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

Change the date of Australia day

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 0 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/25/2016 Category: Society
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 331 times Debate No: 91818
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (0)
Votes (0)

 

clarew

Pro

I believe that the date of Australia day should be changed so that it is more inclusive to the indigenous people of our country. The current date of Australia day is January 26, the day recognised by history as the invasion of new Holland, as it was then known. It was (as noted by the age newspaper in the article the problem with Australia day) "an event which began a chain of disastrous consequences for the indigenous". If it were not for the arrival of "the white man" on Australian shores today"s aboriginal descendants would not have most of the problems they face within society. For example aboriginals were forcibly removed from the land they held sacred and placed into reserves where British ideals were forced upon their culture. In many cases their children were taken from them and their entire communities suffered great emotional turmoil for generations. The Australian Bureau of Statistics states that "one in every three aboriginals experienced high levels of psychological distress, more than twice the rate for non-Indigenous Australians". "Rates (are) particularly high among victims of violence (46%), people with a disability or long-term health condition (43%), and those who had experienced discrimination (44%) or removal from their natural family (39%)." So why should we celebrate everything our beautiful country has to offer on the day that the oppression of the indigenous people began?
moushic

Con

Firstly, i would like to point out some of the things that have been said that i disagree with. it has been said that the 26th of January was an event which began a chain of disastrous consequences for the indigenous however i disagree. Ever since the first fleet arrived, our country only improved and people were given more right as time progressed. It was also said that if it were not for the arrival of "the white man" on Australian shores today"s aboriginal descendants would not have most of the problems they face within society, however, if the events that occurred on the 26th of January 1788 never occurred who knows were Australia would be today.

After the first fleet arrived, our country began improving immensely and if the English didn"t come to Australia, who knows where it would be today and so these are some our the achievements. Some of these are when in 1901, Australia decided to come together as a nation to become more powerful and to have a better defence army. Another one is when women got given the right to vote in the federal elections in 1902 and we were the first country to give women those rights and Aboriginal men and women received the right to vote in federal elections in 1962. After the first fleet, our country also began to improve in the way that it become more multicultural and even though we had a White Australia Policy, that was removed and ever since then, our population has increased. For example, from 2010 to 2011, we had an immigration intake of 127,460, and 15.5% of them were from China and 8.3% were from India.
Debate Round No. 1
clarew

Pro

It has been stated that after Australia was invaded by the British that our country began improving immensely, but I disagree with this statement. Although the country may have progressed to reach the standards of British settlers, that does not mean that basic human rights should have been denied to our indigenous people. How can one say that our country has become more multicultural when our original culture has been denied rights from the point in time that the first fleet arrived on our shores.

The introduction of alcohol to indigenous australians has had a major detrimental impact on their culture as well as their physical and mental wellbeing. Every week 1,500 aboriginals are hospitalised due to the direct effects of alcohol and for 60 of these people the effects will be fatal (creativespirits.info). Indigenous australians are twenty-four times more likely to be imprisoned than non-Indigenous australians, this is often attributed to alcohol. Why would we want to celebrate our national day on the anniversary of when this poison was brought to this "great southern land"? How can we expect the indigenous members of our community to embrace this holiday when every week thousands of communities are affected by our actions. If we had not brought these foreign substances to our beautiful country and claimed that it was Terra Nullius, invalidating one of the oldest cultures in the world, their people would have prospered and their culture continued to grow. How may I ask can we expect the indigenous to forgive us so easily when we celebrate what has been their home for thousands of years on the day that we brought alcohol to its shores?
moushic

Con

It has been said that the basic human rights shouldn't have been denied to our Indigenous people but people should stop looking at the negative things that have occurred in the past but look at the positives that came out of it. Even though the human rights were denied to our Indigenous people, we progressed over the years and granted more rights to the Indigenous.

We have apologised many times in the past and yet the Aboriginals still haven't forgiven us and still hold a grudge for what happened over 200 years ago. We have granted Aboriginals land rights, we have held sorry days, we have held welcome to the country ceremonies to welcome new citizens, we have spent money on aboriginals to get them out of poverty and yet they still aren't accepting our apologies. I strongly believe that Australia Day shouldn't be changed because it was the day that Australia became closer to becoming a nation and despite the grudges people still hold, Australia has already apologised to the Aborigines for the events that occurred and have said sorry to the stolen generations and what happened was in the past and but now we should focus on the present. The 26th of January is a day to be celebrated and we should look at how far we have come as a country.
Debate Round No. 2
clarew

Pro

My first issue with the last argument was the statement that the 26 of January was the day that Australia came closer to becoming a nation. Before the invasion of British settlers the indigenous lived in harmony, and had laws based on trust and communities built on respect. How can the introduction of a new system and the forceful confiscation of the land make Australia more of a nation than it was prior to the settlement of English convicts. If the British had come up with a more peaceful and fair negotiation with the aboriginals instead of taking away their children for many generations and removing their land rights from them, perhaps an apology would be easier to accept, but unfortunately for the indigenous this was not the case and their lives have never been the same since.

I propose that a more suitable and inclusive day for us to celebrate our country would be the day that the white Australian policy was abolished. "Wouldn"t the day we abolished this act and welcomed non-white migrants into Australia make more sense" wouldn"t that send a better message to everyone?" (indigenousx.com.au).This day would not only resolve the issue of celebrating Australia on a day when the indigenous were declared flora and fauna and their homeland declared Terra Nullius, but we would also send a more appropriate message to the world and our migrant citizens who also regard this land as home. "Changing the date would show we have aspirations for this country to become greater than it is. Our treatment of Indigenous, refugees, the homeless and women (the list goes on) isn"t great. It is not worth celebrating, and there is nothing about the arrival of the first fleet that gives pause to reflect on what it would take to become great."(indigenousx.com.au)
moushic

Con

It has been said that it is not worth celebrating but i believe that is false. The 26th of January is definitely worth celebrating because we have developed a lot together as a country since 1788 and who knows where we would be right now. Despite some things that have happened in the past, the Aboriginals should forgive and forget the previous events, as our country has already apologised many times in the past. Despite some things that we have done to the Aboriginals, we have spent billions on them but they still seem to reject our apologies.

Australia Day has become a tradition. We began celebrating Australia Day in 1994 and celebrate it every year to recognise the date of when the first fleet came to Australia and also the raising of the Union Jack. In my opinion, the date for Australia day should stay the same because we have been celebrating Australia day since 1994 and so why would we change the date now?Australia day is the day where all of Australia"s states come together to celebrate our achievements as a country and to look at how far we"ve come. Due to the American Revolution, convicts couldn"t be sent there anymore so they were sent over here. When the English decided to move to Australia, they hadn"t realised that the place was already inhabited by other people and they possibly couldn"t understand what the Aborigines were saying and they must've also been confused so they shouldn"t be blamed for the decisions they made. On the 26th of January, everyone gathers to recognise our new citizens and our progress throughout the years and we also think about how we can improve our country so that is why we shouldn"t change it.
Debate Round No. 3
No comments have been posted on this debate.
No votes have been placed for this debate.