aboriginal-children

Shout out to Native kids who were told not to tell people they were Native to avoid harassment and racism.  

Shout out to Native kids who were told not to take anti-Native racism so seriously because “they don’t look native enough,” or because “that happened so long ago,” and how “they need to get over it.”

Shout out to Native kids who denied that part of who they were even if it broke their heart. 

Shout out to the Native kids who rebelled and were tormented for it. 

Shout out to Native kids who lost friends because they stood up for themselves.

Shout out to Native kids who are harassed by racist teachers.

Shout out to Native kids who want to connect with their culture but wonder if they even have a right to.

You are strong and beautiful and loved even if you feel lonely, isolated, and on your own. 

And if you need a friend, by all means, message me. I’m here.

In the late nineteenth century, government officials in both the United States and Australia devised new policies for indigenous peoples: “assimilation” in the United States and “protection” in Australia. As can be seen by Commissioner Morgan’s quote, officials often proclaimed that they were ushering in a new age of dealing fairly and kindly with the remaining indigenous inhabitants. Yet these new policies actually entailed one of the most draconian measures possible: the removal of indigenous children from their kin and communities to be raised in distant institutions. Instead of breaking with the past use of violence and force, these new approaches are best seen as part of a continuum of colonizing approaches, all aimed ultimately at extinguishing indigenous people ’s claims to their remaining land. 2 As the anthropologist Ann Laura Stoler finds, “The politics of compassion was not an oppositional assault on empire but a fundamental element of it”; the “production and harnessing of sentiment” comprised a key “technology of the colonial state.”

In both countries, government officials and reformers used a remarkably similar language to justify their policies. They routinely asserted that the removal of indigenous children from their families would “save” the children from lives of backwardness and poverty in their “camps” and “civilize” and make them “useful” in Australian and American societies. Authorities also warned that if children were not removed, indigenous people would become a “burden” or a “menace” to their emerging nations. Just underneath this articulated layer of justification lay a bedrock of concerns about defining and building the nation — as white, Christian, and modern. Policy makers regarded the surviving indigenous populations as standing in the way of national unity, modernity, and progress and envisioned child removal as a means to complete the colonization of indigenous peoples. Significantly, whereas U.S. authorities focused primarily on culturally assimilating Indian children, many Australian officials promoted the biological absorption of Aboriginal children, what they termed “breeding out the colour.” 

- from White mother to a dark race: settler colonialism, maternalism, and the removal of indigenous children in the American West and Australia, 1880-1940, by Margaret D. Jacobs (2009)

I’m so frustrated by the lack of information on ancestry.com for Aboriginal people. All I can find is my paternal grandparents’ marriage certificate; that my paternal great-grandfather worked on a station as a station hand and had a will drawn up in northern Victoria; and that my Dad voted in a local election in 1978. There’s nothing on my mother’s side of the family. The only reason I can find anything at all about my Dad’s family is because both his mother’s father and his father’s father were white and moved here from Ireland (I still can’t find ship details from their respective voyages). Oh and marriages between Aboriginal women and white men are so difficult to find information on from that era for a couple of reasons. 1. Aboriginal people were not classed as Australian citizens in our own country until 1967. 2. Aboriginal children who had mixed parentage i.e. had white fathers, were usually taken away from their mothers by the Australian government (see stolen generations) because of eugenics and systematic genocide as per state and federal policy. It’s frustrating me because I want to know more about my family history; I want a fuller picture.

Maaaan, though. Imagine if Furiosa had been played by an Indigenous Australian woman.

I don’t know how familiar people are with Australian history, but basically from 1909 until the 1970′s the government used to forcibly remove Aboriginal children from their families, mainly those who were mixed-race, and place them in foster care or missionaries, often in terrible conditions. The reason for this was to assimilate Aboriginal children into white society, cut off their link from their heritage and cultures and “breed out the black” - the assumption being that they would grow up to have fair-skinned children with a white person, and that those children would go on to have fairer-skinned children until no trace of their heritage remained. For this very reason, girls were more often targeted than boys. Thousands of Aboriginal children went through this trauma, something now referred to as the Stolen Generations.

And although the Australian government has formally acknowledged and apologised for this dark part of our history, the issues of inequality and poverty that plague Aboriginal communities today are still largely ignored and Indigenous children are still being taken from their homes and placed into foster care at alarming rates. Aboriginal children are 8 times more likely to be subjected to departmental intervention. Native languages and histories are being lost every year because no one remains to pass them on to. And of course there are many victims of the Stolen Generations alive today who still don’t know where they belong.

With this in mind, imagine how powerful it would have been if an Aboriginal woman had played Furiosa.

Furiosa, who was stolen from her home as a child by white men and subjected to sexual abuse. Furiosa, who was forced to adopt a foreign culture and ideology in order to survive, but who always clung to the memories of her childhood home and the teachings of her mother. Furiosa, who fought all her life so she could be with her people again. Furiosa, who rescued five abused women who had also been stolen from their families. Furiosa, who was filled with such joy when she saw her childhood friend again, when she was recognised and addressed by name, when she was re-introduced to their customs. Furiosa, who screamed with such agony and desolation when she discovered her people were all but gone and her ancestral home had been poisoned by the machinations of foreign invaders.

Furiosa, who decided to fight and take her land back from Immortan Joe. Furiosa, who killed the literal embodiment of the white male patriarchy. Furiosa, who liberated the Wretched and lifted up the oppressed to salvation. Furiosa, who took her land back from the men who killed the world so she could build a new Green Place with the last of the Vuvalini and the Wives.

Imagine seeing that on screen. Imagine seeing an Aboriginal woman do all these things.

I don’t mean this post to be an attack on George Miller or Charlize Theron by any means. This is just a self-indulgent ‘what if…?’

Because honestly, it would have been amazing.

THE BUNYIP

The bunyip is believed to reside in the swamps, creeks, riverbeds, and other aquatic environments in Australia, a creature originating from Aboriginal mythology. Its name being translated to “devil” or “evil spirit”, one of the first recorded sightings of this creature in 1818. The last recorded sighting of the bunyip was in 1852. It is believed that the bunyip preys on aborigine women and children during the night, and Aboriginal stories describe how the bunyip will steal children and eat them if they sit too close to the waterbed.

Some speculate the alleged bunyip to be an animal that was thought to be extinct, the Diprotodon. Others believe it is a species of sea lion.

anonymous asked:

what's your icon means?

Warning: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are advised there are images and names of deceased persons below that may cause sadness or distress.

Sorry it took a while to get to this and my apologies, but this is a long answer.

My icon is in protest of the date that Australia marks to celebrate Australia Day, which is the official National Day of Australia. It marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British ships at Port Jackson, and the raising of the Flag of Great Britain at Sydney Cove by Arthur Phillip.

However, it’s not a day of celebration for everyone, namely, the Aboriginal people of Australia.

Our history did not begin with the arrival of the British; we enjoyed thousands of years in this country with our own sovereignty. For many of us, celebrating on the 26th is not respectful because we view it as a day of mourning. It marks the beginning of colonisation and genocide of our peoples. It is celebrating the beginning of oppression for Aboriginal peoples. The dispossession of lands; mass murder; as well as threats of cultural and linguistic extinction.

Many of us refer to it as Invasion Day as it was an act of war against sovereign peoples; others, Survival Day, to recognise our resilience in the face of 200+ years of outright systematic genocide from the British imperialism and Australian colonialism.

We, the First Australians, do want to celebrate a day when we can talk about all of the wonderful things we love about our country. Yet, the 26th is not a day that has EVER felt good for us.

Australia, like many other colonial and post-colonial nations, has a history of denying that there was ever much wrong doing against Aboriginal people. And when there finally is an acknowledgement, others demand that we, as Aboriginal people, ‘get over it’.

Let me illustrate (in a short list) some of the things they want us to ‘get over’:

- Spread of smallpox that killed large numbers of Aboriginal people when the First Fleet arrived

- Arthur Philip calling for the death of Aboriginal warrior Pemulwuy after he responded to violence against local Aboriginal people, namely women and children

- ‘Parties’ sent out to massacre Aboriginal populations for ‘offences’ such as killing livestock to feed their families after many of the native animals were driven out by early graziers. 

- Sexual violence against Aboriginal women and children

- Aboriginal people being forced to live on missions and reserves

- Aborigines Protection Board

- Aboriginal children of mixed parentage being forcibly removed from their families

- Assimilation Policy

- Exclusion from Education

- Aboriginal Deaths in Custody

Here are some famous images of Aboriginal men who were taken prisoner. Images like these were often taken after a massacre had occurred.

Caption: Head chains were sometimes used for a Native’s entire Prison Sentence, up to 3 years or more, 24 hours a day.

The reasons for many of these ‘arrests’ were to dispossess people so that farmers could have their land; or in response to an Aboriginal person killing livestock for food in order to survive.

Below, we see Aboriginal children who were taken from their families and forced to live in ‘Homes’ where they were trained to be domestics and laborers for white families. Many suffered physical and sexual abuse. Many never found their families again.

Caption (which was handwritten by a white woman wanting an Aboriginal child as a domestic): I like the little girl in centre of group, but if taken by anyone else, any of the others would do, as long as they are strong.

The wider Australian community does not like to acknowledge that these abuses occurred in our SHARED HISTORY. Celebrating the official day of our nation when it marks the beginning of imperial rule in our country which led to these government sanctioned atrocities is NOT a happy thing for us. This is why we protest celebrating ‘Australia Day’ on the 26th of January.

These are from my own personal teaching resources; I use them with students to teach them about the History Wars Debate:

Historians engaged in History Wars Debate

Australian Prime Ministers on Australian history.

Discussion topics for students on omission and inclusion in history.

I think most Australians subscribe to Howard’s view that sharing the black armband view of history makes Australia’s colonial narrative look like a ‘disgraceful story of imperialism, exploitation, racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination…’

If that is the story of Australia, then it should be told. We should be celebrating what we have achieved as a multi-cultural nation with a long history (and prehistory) of Aboriginal occupation, not trying to hide what happened to the First Australians; not denying that the Australian Dream was built at the expense, detriment, and great sorrow of the nation’s Indigenous peoples.

EVERY COLONIAL COUNTRY HAS A VIOLENT HISTORY.

WHITE AUSTRALIA HAS A BLACK HISTORY.

Thank you for asking. If you wanted to know more, here’s some information about Frontier Wars; massacres; human right violations; Aboriginal Resistance; and Invasion Day:

                                                                                                                              Blood on the Wattle: Massacres and Maltreatment of Aboriginal Australians Since 1788 by Bruce Elder

Why Weren’t We Told? by Henry Reynolds

Whitewash: On Keith Windschuttle’s Fabrication of Aboriginal History by Robert Manne

Australian Human Rights Commission

Ten Ways to Stand with Indigenous People this Survival Day by Amnesty International

Sovereign Union - First Nations Asserting Sovereignty

A New Generation of Indigenous Children Lost in the System by Allan Clarke

Stories of Resistance

Teaching Resources:

Aboriginal Resistance to Colonisation: Four Case Studies by the National Museum of Australia

A Reference List can be found here for further reading.

The video footage on Four Corners of Aboriginal children being tortured in Don Dale correction centre have shocked the country. But this is the tip of the iceberg of the racist ‘child protection’ and prison systems that subject Aboriginal children to institutionalised child abuse across the continent on a daily basis.

Malcolm Turnbull and Adam Giles have announced a Royal Commission into the centre - but their own racist Intervention and “tough on crime” policies systematically breach the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCIADIC).

Countless inquiries have already been done. We already know the facts of this case. We demand justice immediately. The prison guards responsible must be sacked and charged. So too should the NT Government who have consistently demonised and criminalised Aboriginal children and bear ultimate responsibility for this abuse. Minister Scullion also must be sacked.

Across Australia, Black children make up 50 per cent of the prison system. More children are being forcibly removed today than at any point in Australian history - taken from their families and put into foster care or prison cells.

We need to build on the outrage and take forward the ongoing struggles against the racist police, prison and ‘child protection’ systems.

nakedwrathia  asked:

What are the BC NDP's policies when in comes to children in government/foster care? Because that's an issue that really worries me, with so many kids committing suicide and having people with criminal records being aloud to foster children. I haven't heard what they have thought about that yet.

Here’s their platform on that:

PUTTING CARE INTO CHILD PROTECTION

Christy Clark and the BC Liberals have starved our child protection system of resources and failed to provide the basics of care. We believe every child has the right to care, safety, permanency and connection with their culture.

Tragically, last year more than 100 children involved with the Ministry of Children and Families died. Only half of BC foster children graduate from high school with their peers. More than half of former youth in care rely on income assistance programs, and many struggle with mental illness and homelessness.

A disproportionate number of children in care, more than 65 per cent, are of Indigenous ancestry. And Aboriginal children, especially girls, are more likely to be abused in care than other children. There are more Indigenous children in care in BC today than there were at the height of residential schools.

And despite the extra challenges faced by Aboriginal children in care, there is a funding gap between Delegated Aboriginal Agencies and services targeted at the broader population.

Ensuring that children who leave care thrive, not just survive

Under Christy Clark and the BC Liberals, kids aging out of the care system have struggled to transition, suffered with significant mental health challenges and, tragically, some have taken their own lives. We will take action to improve the conditions and success of kids aging out of care.

›We will increase funding for Agreements with Young Adults by an additional $10 million in order to offer supports to all youth aging out of care who need it, not just a few.

›We will ensure our K-12 system has the resources to help youth-in-care graduate with their peers.

›We will work with universities and colleges to expand the tuition fee waiver program and provide enhanced supports for former youth in care who pursue post-secondary education.

Helping Aboriginal children connect and stay with their families and communities

We will work to implement all the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, with reducing the number of Aboriginal children entering our care system as a top priority and ensuring quality and safe care for those who do enter.

›We will implement the recommendations from Grand Chief Ed John’s report and provide better supports to keep Aboriginal children at home and out of care.

›When Aboriginal children do enter care, we will ensure that basic care standards are met, that there is a plan for every child in care to connect them with their culture and communities, and that there is a plan for permanency.

›We will ensure Delegated Aboriginal Agencies are supported to offer services at the same level offered to non-Aboriginal children.

Committing to accountability

We would task the Select Standing Committee on Children and Youth to review the recommendations of the Independent Representative for Children and Youth to identify recommendations that have not been met and how to address them.

This is from page 41-43 of their platform.

anonymous asked:

The "stolen childhood" thing makes me sick to my stomach too, I'm from Australia where we had the stolen generation of Aboriginal children being stolen from their families from the English who invaded to try and teach them how live a "white" life and deny them their entire Aboriginal culture - having your parents tell you to lose some weight is not even comparable to the horrible monstrosities of oppression that has happened to Aboriginal children, past and present.

It really shows how self-centred some of them are. Horrible things like this happen but all that matters to them is how thin someone is. 

  • white canadian: Hahaha america sucks!! How does my free healthcare look from over there?
  • me: How are those food prices in Nunavut looking like? Still 105 for a case of water? Ya'll still fucking over your canadian aboriginal people huh?
  • me: stop using free healthcare as a quip to shoot against america when you're just like america in the case of genocidal actions and racism. Thousands of native children were taken by gunpoint and placed in "schools" that acted like jails until they died from tuberculosis, but no one talks about it because you don't care enough to look and listen.
  • me: Your shit isn't just Degrassi, funny colored money and poutine. Your shit is horrible and continues to be, so let it be known bunch of maple syrup ain't making that shit sweet anytime soon.
  • me: talk about that
  • links: http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/03/08/cana-m08.html
  • --
  • http: //www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/06/11/nunavut-food-prices-protest-inuit-poverty_n_1588144.html
  • --
  • http: //www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/6000-aboriginal-children-died-in-cultural-genocide-in-canadian-residential-school-system-officials-say-10286644.html

anonymous asked:

The numbers abt aboriginal children in the foster system remind me how it is often ignored that aboriginal kids weren't only in residential schools, they were forcibly adopted (often passed off as Italian or taken away as babies to better assimilate them into their new white families.) That aboriginal kids make up half the foster system now is no coincidence. This practise is still ongoing, simply more bureaucratic, calling FN parents 'bad' while not giving them the support&healing they need.

Yeah, one particularly nasty period of forced removals of indigenous children from their parents was known as The 60′s scoop.