>> Let­ters to the edi­tor

Campaspe News - - NEWS -

Hands off ANZAC Day

THIS Sub-Branch views with grave con­cern the re­cently re­ported dis­cus­sions by the Vic­to­rian gov­ern­ment to al­ter the fo­cus of both ANZAC and Re­mem­brance Days to in­clude ac­knowl­edge­ment of the sac­ri­fices made by in­dige­nous Aus­tralians dur­ing the “fron­tier wars”.

Those two days mark unique events in Aus­tralia’s his­tory dur­ing which all who served, in­clud­ing in­dige­nous ser­vice per­son­nel, are hon­oured and com­mem­o­rated.

Nei­ther of those dates have any­thing to do with uniquely in­dige­nous is­sues.

Al­ter­ing the fo­cus of the com­mem­o­ra­tion on these two days would de­tract from the in­tent of the com­mem­o­ra­tions.

There may well be jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for ac­knowl­edge­ment of the rights of in­dige­nous Aus­tralians and com­mem­o­ra­tion of those who died de­fend­ing those rights but nei­ther ANZAC nor Re­mem­brance Days are suit­able for that pur­pose.

Com­bin­ing two very dif­fer­ent is­sues of fo­cus would be con­fus­ing, di­vi­sive and detri­men­tal to both causes.

A day to hon­our those in­dige­nous Aus­tralians should be fo­cused on rec­on­cil­i­a­tion and har­mony, not di­vi­sion.

Those who have served in the de­fence of Aus­tralian ter­ri­tory and our way of life served to pre­serve our free­dom of speech among other val­ues.

We sup­port the right to dis­cuss this con­tentious is­sue but we urge re­spect for preser­va­tion of the tra­di­tional val­ues as­so­ci­ated with ANZAC and Re­mem­brance Days.

We re­ject any con­cept that these spe­cial days should even be con­sid­ered for change.

The Aus­tralian demo­cratic po­lit­i­cal sys­tem al­lows many points of view but the over­rid­ing prin­ci­ple of gov­ern­ment should be unity, not di­vi­sion. John Glover, Rochester RSL Pres­i­dent

Red Cross is call­ing again

EV­ERY March for 70 years, thou­sands of vol­un­teers have made a won­der­ful con­tri­bu­tion to our com­mu­nity dur­ing Red Cross Call­ing. They’ve knocked on their neigh­bours’ doors, said g’day and their com­bined ef­forts have raised mil­lions.

All of that effort has gone a long way, al­low­ing Red Cross to help where we’re needed most; from fires to floods, re­duc­ing suf­fer­ing, while keeping peo­ple safe and se­cure.

So many ex­tra­or­di­nary vol­un­teers here in Vic­to­ria have also gone the ex­tra mile – not just rais­ing money but also reach­ing out to their neigh­bours, ask­ing how they’re go­ing and check­ing on their well­be­ing.

Red Cross Call­ing is more than a fundraiser – it gives us a rea­son to con­nect and vol­un­teer. I’d like to send a mas­sive thanks to all those thou­sands of schools, busi­nesses, com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions and in­di­vid­u­als who’ve an­swered the call over the years.

This year we aim to dou­ble the num­ber of vol­un­teers in Vic­to­ria. Will you be one of them? Join the fun to­day: red­cross­call­ing.org.au or call 1800 RED CROSS. Wenda Don­ald­son, Di­rec­tor, Vic­to­ria, Aus­tralian Red Cross

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.