You can wait for someone to change “Australia Day” or you can take the time and effort to use this day to educate yourself, remember and acknowledge. Never wait for the government to make the right moral decision.
Have a dig online today about the culture of the Australians that owned and belonged on the land your live on for thousands of years, before our Brittish ancestors changed that. You can love our country and still respect others and the history of what happened. Doing a bit of research on your own can uncover some info about the land you stand on.
The Gold Coast where I live is part of the Bundjaling tribe and more specifically the Ngarahgwal people on Yugumbah land.
The Bundjalung people believe the spirits of wounded warriors are present within the mountains, their injuries having manifested themselves as scars on the mountainside, and thunderstorms in the mountains recall the sounds of those warriors’ battles.
So enjoy your BBQ and celebrate being proud to be Australian, but don’t do so without paying respect to the real history and celebrating what was lost, so that we can all enjoy what we have today.
The history some of us got in school in the 80’s and 90’s isn’t exactly the full story. Don’t wait for our government to make the right decision, make it yourself please.
The following taken from – http://yesaca.com/first-australians/
First Australians Overview History of Yugumbeh Land (Gold Coast).
The Ngarahgwal people (Salt water tribe of the Yugumbeh language speaking tribes) were the traditional custodians of the area from Nerang River to the Tweed River, they referred to this area as “Kurrungul”, a name derived from their word for endless supplies of special timbers. This area had been the Ngarahgwal peoples homeland since God Himself put them there.
Kurrungul was a place of abundant food, vegetables, fruits, nuts, meat, shellfish & seafood. Red Cedar, Rosewood, Mahogany. The forests were magnificent & full of life.
The Yugumbah peoples were family orientated & community minded, intelligent, good people. Modern day dating of shell mittens found in Yugumeh land (Gold Coast area) prove that this area is one of the oldest inhabited areas in the world.
In 1840 the Australian Government had this area surveyed. They found Kurrungul to be full of precious boat & furniture making timbers. Armed government gangs of timber cutters (single men with no European women) descended upon Ngarahgwal land cutting down every good tree. They chop down as much wood as their bullock teams could drag up to Brisbane for use in the Moreton Bay shipping industry. The timber cutters treated the local people with little respect. Greed & the lust for money drove the European men to lay waste to Kurrungul.
There were approximately eight clans that made up the Yugumbeh language speaking tribes. In 1845 two European cedar cutters were killed at Murwillumbah, the colonizing white European people reacted to these murders with brutal force. Dispersing ( a code word for killing) first Australians around the Northern Rivers & the Yugumbeh land area.
Yugumbeh people were rounded up and place into a government sanctioned camp at Nerrang. Once all the good timber had been removed from Yugumbeh lands the colonizing white European started to settle and set up farms. The Government Prison Camp at Nerrang became to close for comfort for the farming community so the government moved the Yugumbeh people further west to Beaudesert. As the new Gold Coast farming and European settlement expanded the Aboriginal camp at Beaudesert became once again to close for comfort and the aboriginal people were relocated off their traditional land and forcibly moved 375km north west of Brisbane to Barambah. Aboriginal people were brought from all over Queensland and Northern New South Wales to this government reserve. Under the Aborigines Protection Act of 1897 the settlement then called Barambah, was gazetted and established in 1904. In 1932, the name Barambah was then changed to Cherbourg due to a nearby property called “Barambah Station” which caused confusion in mail delivery.
However one fresh water tribe that was able to intermarry under trbal law with the Yugumber people was the Githabul tribe. They were never moved off their traditional lands. They eventually were moved to a government camp called Muli, at modern day Woodenbong Northern NSW.