Friday, April 15, 2011

Blog 6: A Stolen Generation

History is an amazing thing. One thing, one fact, can change everything for the world! This was sort of similar to what happened in Australia quite a long time ago...

During the time when the British were colonizing Australia, they were taking whatever land they saw first. Without thinking, they grabbed and never said a word. They didn't even care if it belonged to some Aboriginal clan. The British, in this case, made the Aborigine people move living places... It didn't matter if they owned the land, or not, or even if they had a government, or not. They just took it, paying no respects to those who were rightfully there first. When the British were colonizing, they also brought some diseases with them that were fatal to many Aboriginal people. These diseases included small pox, influenza, and teburculosis. Not only did they bring diseases, but when they brought their foreign animals over to Australia, such as sheep and cattle, the Aboriginal people started war for land and water.
Aborigines were forced out of their houses, stripped of land, had restrictions on where they could live, and who they could marry.
At this point in history, the "Stolen Generation" was being created, which was a generation of infants that were taken from their families for a long time, all being taught on how to reject their Aboriginal heritage and culture. They didn't want anyone of the Aborigines to continue on with their traditions. This "Stolen Generation" lasted until about the late 1960s. Here in history, they didn't take children away anymore.
Being a part of the "Stolen Generation" can influence a human in many ways. They can even be physically or mentally harmed... After this happened, many children came back home confused, not knowing where to go or what to do. Most of them didn't even know their families, or where they were! They were lost... trapped... not able to get out of a place where they will be stuck in forever. The world is a beautiful place, however the "Stolen Generation" came out for the worst. Not only were the children harmed in several ways, but they also got very involved in abuse, violence, drugs and alcohol, as well as ended up in very cruel places. This didn't have the best influence on the children... But on the other hand, what could have you done? This was part of life, and a part of history waiting to happen.
Nowadays, Australian people celebrate Journey of Healing Day in order to honor this event. I mean, even though the Aboriginal people received a statement explaining the bad behavior and what had been done, that's not exactly what they wanted. They wanted freedom, and a chance to be somebody... They wanted a true apology that meant something.
An apology can solve many things, like this problem. An apology can help cure what had happened in the past, help understand the truth, as well as help the future. However, it cannot turn back what had already happened. Families were torn apart, children were harmed, bad memories were made... What people saw in those times in history will never turn back and will haunt them until who knows when. They will always remember what happened, even if people try to make them not think about it. Even though these major problems cannot be healed with words, several words can make a difference! It can earn the Aboriginal people their honesty and respect, and that's what really matters... plus land.

The "Stolen Generation" is a big part of Australian history, so I hope you remember this too!

1 comment:

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