An­zac pa­rades about re­mem­ber­ing fallen

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - OPINION OURS & YOURS -

An­zac Day is about com­mem­o­rat­ing the An­zac spirit and those who sac­ri­ficed their lives in ser­vice of their coun­try (“Ladies first, civil­ians last in An­zac march shake-up”, 15/4).

This year we should be com­mem­o­rat­ing the last year of World War I and the be­gin­ning of the An­zac leg­end. Women have al­ways been able to march with their re­spec­tive units. There has never been any dis­crim­i­na­tion. We have al­ways marched to­gether.

In­tro­duc­ing seg­re­ga­tion is not good, but the real is­sue should be about re­mem­ber­ing the fallen. The changes to the or­der of the An­zac Day march are a PR stunt. Noth­ing about the march was bro­ken and after nearly a cen­tury of tweak­ing noth­ing needed fix­ing.

An­zac Day has al­ways been about the veter­ans, with veter­ans lead­ing. This year it has be­come a mil­i­tary pa­rade fea­tur­ing in­ter­est groups and serv­ing per­son­nel. Veter­ans have been pushed back an hour, and the World War I peo­ple we should be re­mem­ber­ing and com­mem­o­rat­ing, in­clud­ing the his­toric Beer­sheba mounted troop, have been rel­e­gated to the back of the Pa­rade Item 50.

Sadly, the new gen­er­a­tion has lost sight of the past and what our An­zac her­itage is all about! ROBERT SYD­NEY

YOUTHS NEED EN­COUR­AGE­MENT

I felt a bit in­sulted by RSL pres­i­dent James Brown’s com­ment re Dig­gers “march­ing be­hind some­one in trackie daks with some medals they have found the day be­fore”.

An­zac cer­e­monies have shown a strong par­tic­i­pa­tion from our youth, and in do­ing so, a re­newed in­ter­est and ap­pre­ci­a­tion for what our sol­diers sac­ri­ficed for our cur­rent life­style, I’m sure they don’t just “dis­cover them the day be­fore” and roll up to the front of the queue.

In all my years of at­tend­ing the marches, there has al­ways been a pri­or­ity on ex-ser­vice men and women to take prece­dence over rel­a­tives in the lead.

These kids (and the adult rel­a­tives of veter­ans) feel a pride in par­tic­i­pat­ing in the marches and rep­re­sent­ing those who gave up their lives so they can live in this great coun­try.

I have yet to see one in “trackie daks”.

If it wasn’t for the youth of Aus­tralia, these marches and the Dawn Ser­vice would have a very low attendance. JOHN ROBERT­SON PORT MAC­QUARIE

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