Later this year, Australians will vote in an important referendum to amend the nation’s constitution on whether to recognize Indigenous Australians (Constitutional Recognition) by establishing a Voice to Parliament in Canberra for Aboriginals to influence Parliament and the Government on policies relating to them.
At first, it sounds like a wonderful idea, given that they’ve been in Australia for close to 60,000 years before British colonialists settled in the country in 1788 and therefore can advise and influence the Australian parliament and government through what’s the best policy for them
But there’s a problem. By giving one group of Australians the ability to be able to directly influence and advise our national parliament and democratically elected government on policies affecting them, what about the other groups of Australians?
Australia is a successful multicultural and multiethnic nation and recently, became the world’s biggest migrant nation with immigrants from around the world leaving their former life to move to Australia. Doesn’t matter if they had immigrated from countries such as India, Vietnam, China, New Zealand (like this writer is from) or even from different European countries, upon becoming fully-fledged citizens of Australia and receiving their citizenship on Australia Day, they’re Australians under one flag and one constitution.
Upon becoming citizens, they can vote for their parliamentary representatives to our nation’s parliaments, state or federal in a successful liberal democracy and thereby, elect their government along with every Australian citizen every 3 or 4 years.
So why is it that Aboriginal Australians, who can already elect their representatives (in an election) just like their other fellow citizens must have their own bureaucratic group to parliament to directly influence government policies? This coincidentally, happens to be advocated and supported by the likes of Professor Marcia Langton, Noel Pearson and other high-profile Aboriginal Australians, individuals who have crudely attacked prominent No Campaigners including Shadow Liberal Indigenous Affairs Minister, Jacinta Price.
It isn’t racist to ask this question of why a race-based Indigenous Voice to Parliament is needed in a liberal democratic nation just like Australia when already, our national parliament in Canberra exists for democratically elected parliamentarians across the country to debate and legislate policies affecting Australians.
The Albanese Government could have legislated the Voice instead of asking at a divisive referendum to enshrine it in Australia’s constitution which is a national document that birthed this modern country.
Not only would enshrining a race-based Voice to Parliament in our nation’s constitution be divisive and would upend and upturn Australia being a land where all are equal before the law and also give greater preferential treatment to one group of Australians than the rest but it would as No campaigner and former President of the Australian Labor Party, Warren Mundine AO states in a recent SkyNews Australia column, “fundamentally alter the character of Australia’s democratic system and the positions of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians within it. And not in a good way.“
Amending and altering our nation’s constitution should be treated with the utmost severity and seriousness to prevent race from being inserted into it, and by enshrining the Voice that’s exactly what will happen. If the referendum is successful, then it means we will be permanently dividing Australians by race by installing a race-based bureaucracy in Canberra for one group of Australians.
What’s worse is the fact that it will have the power to influence not only Parliament but all areas of executive government, meaning its scope will extend to even the Reserve Bank of Australia. God knows what will happen if it’s given that ability and power to do so. Where’s the transparency in it? How will it be scrutinized? Audited? Will there be sufficient accountability? Probably none and given how large and potentially powerful this bureaucracy will be, this should concern all Australians that they might have the power to sway other areas of the government including Centrelink, therefore, affecting and impacting how the executive administration will be run and even delay Ministerial decisions.
But it’s not a potential overreach into the different executive and governmental departments and agencies we should be concerned about, it’s also the legal side that’s as risky. As it will be enshrined into our nation’s constitution, it’s always subjected to open interpretation, especially in the nation’s High Court which carries the danger of it becoming a litigation and constitutional nightmare.
Ian Callinan, AC, KC and former High Court Judge warns of the Voice, “I would foresee a decade or more constitutional and administrative law litigation arising out of a voice…” what’s worse is not only can the Voice delay an important Ministerial decision and open a can of worms of long and lengthy legal battles in the High Court (therefore becoming a litigation liability), but also once an interpretation has been made by the High Court of Australia, it is permanent and the Voice cannot be reversed. It is not like repealing an existing legislation.
Once embedded and enshrined in the constitution, it’s there permanently.
The danger greatly outweighs any benefits (if there are any) to enshrining a dangerous race-based Indigenous Voice to Parliament to our nation’s Constitution, it could’ve been legislated instead but that would mean a future L/NP Coalition Government will have the chance to repeal it so by including it to our constitution, it will remain there permanently.
That means permanently dividing Australians by race and what’s even more worrying is that the hard-left activists of the grievance industry have already insisted the Voice is just the start, next to come will be a Treaty with the Aboriginal Australians after truth-telling and reparations for past deeds against them.
As if the current grievance industry isn’t bad enough, the Voice will turbocharge it and what do I mean by that? Instead of focusing on reducing the amount of sexual violence and assaults committed against vulnerable Aboriginal women and girls, getting more Aboriginal children into schools, and reducing and stopping rampant violence and abuse we find in Indigenous communities, especially in the Northern Territory, it will focus instead of the grievances of how British settlers colonised Australia to paint it as an “invasion” of the country (that already had Aboriginal Australians for the close past 60,000 years) to demand reparations (among other similar things).
Already, they’ve marked Australia Day as “Invasion Day”, a day of grief and mourning for them where in past years hard-left activists have demanded Australia is “burn to the ground” among other anti-Australian sentiments expounded that does nothing to improve the current standard of living of Aboriginal Australians.
What Indigenous Australians need is not a Voice to Parliament in Canberra made up of Aboriginal elites who are on the grievance industry gravy train, but for the ones on the ground who are facing sexual assaults, alcohol-fueled violence, broken and domestic violence-inflicted families, low to zero education et cetera in their community, and to work to improve their situation.
Instead of campaigning for a Voice to Parliament for Canberra, we should work to elect more successful and brilliant Indigenous politicians to give better representations in Parliament to focus on the real issues, especially in our state Parliaments. That’s real representation.
We should send our Canberra politicians to the Northern Territory especially Alice Springs, where there’s been so much violence happening where many Aboriginal Australians live, it has become like a warzone. In order to see what’s been happening and to put pressure on the NT Government to take meaningful action. For women and girls who have been victims of sexual assault and violence to let their voices be heard and for a Royal Commission into it as well, one that will allow our politicians and governments to realize the seriousness of what they’ve had to face.
We should be advocating for young Indigenous children to attend school, to receive the education they need to be able to work and live in modern-day Australia successfully.
We also need an important inquiry into the massive amount of money spent annually towards Aboriginal Australians to see if it’s being spent properly, whether it’s benefiting them and improving their situation or not.
We should not be wasting precious time and resources in a divisive referendum to approve and enshrine a dangerous, ineffective and litigation nightmare of a Voice to Parliament based in Canberra which will only bring bad outcomes to Australia as a whole.
Therefore, it’s why the Voice must not succeed and why it isn’t racist to Vote No. Aussies who advocate for an Australia where all its citizens are under one flag, one constitution and are all equal before the law must vote No. Vote No to what will be a wasteful bureaucracy that will divide us.
Don’t fall for the emotional arguments of the “Yes” campaigners as well from the sporting codes who are backing it as well, their argument is flawed as we don’t even know how this will (as aforementioned) reduce things such as sexual violence and assaults against Indigenous women and girls.
And while we’re on the “Yes” campaigners, it’s important to note that they’ll try to conflate Constitutional Recognition with the Voice. We must be careful as both are separate things. Constitutional Recognition is what many Australians support but not the Voice, a race-based bureaucracy with so much constitutional danger.
As the Honourable Tony Abbott, AC described, the Voice will be “akin to the British House of Lord“, a second parliamentary chamber in the Palace of Westminster (where Britain’s parliament is based) that was once open to aristocrats based on their ancestry, a Voice to Parliament will be the same but for Indigenous Australians centred on their ancestry. Ancestry over meritocracy is fundamentally wrong.
Already, before the Voice has even gotten up or we have voted for it, several high-profile Indigenous women have clashed such as radical Aboriginal campaigner and self-proclaimed leader of the “Blak Sovereignty Movement”, Lidia Thorpe and Labor Minister, Malandirri McCarthy clashed during recent Senate Estimates over funding for police in Northern Territory, of course to Thorpe, such funding is completely unacceptable. And in that same estimate, a furious Lidia Thorpe stormed out of the room.
Greens Indigenous Senator, Dorinda Cox and Tjanara Goreng Goreng also recently clashed in a Perth airport where an angry Senator Cox allegedly berated and humiliated Goreng Goreng as to why she’s in the Indigenous country Cox hails from without permission which reduced Goreng Goreng to tears. This allegedly was over Senator Cox’s membership to the Greens Blak Sovereignty Movement having been rescinded.
So even before the Voice has gotten up, these incidents have occurred, imagine if we already have the Voice? Now, disagreements are one thing but to have such flare-ups resulting in tears and storming out of the room is another. Imagine if an important Government/Ministerial decision is delayed due to this happening with the Voice? Aboriginal Australians elected (or appointed) to the Voice angrily berating, humiliating, attacking and shouting at each other?
I’m not suggesting this necessarily will be the absolute case for the Voice, but if this is how they sort out their disagreements before it is established, it won’t look pretty when we have the Voice.
Although it’s good to hear less than 50% of Australians will vote yes based on recent polling, the “No” campaign mustn’t be complacent and fight to the very end to ensure that it must not succeed at all.
This will be the biggest fight to defend Australia’s Constitution from being wrongly amended and tampered with because we only have one shot and one shot only.