Sunday, February 17, 2008

Slogans not Solutions

One thing that struck me about people who live idealized dreams is that they tend to cling so strongly to cliches, slogans or an idea even when it doesn't match up against reality and people suffer.

What is it about people that make them so... stupid? Pride, I think is one. Being afraid to admit you're wrong or worse, just being plain arrogant. Or... just plain afraid to confront the truth, preferring instead to cling to their dreams and ideologies - even though they are hurting or contributing to the suffering of children.

Whilst the rest of the community are cheering on about "Sorry Day" here in Australia - to apologize for a period in time when Aboriginal children were take away from their parents and community - I don't see any sign that the present Govt is going to offer any good long term solution for the crisis facing Aboriginal communities who seem to be veritable Sodoms and Gomorahs, hell holes where kids are raped at an early age - and no one gives a damn.

Read this story and weep.

Lara Wieland

IN the eight short years since I started living and working in Cape York communities, I have witnessed a rapid and tragic decline in the environment that children live in.

The older generation, the last few threads holding the social fabric together, is disappearing. The few who survive have become powerless, bewildered and despairing, living at the mercy of their dysfunctional families who harass them for money and steal their food.

Members of a generation who were raised by people under the control of substance abuse and welfare dependence are now becoming parents themselves. Many of these young parents have known nothing other than violence, mostly towards women, neglect of children, and an almost complete lack of understanding of the wider world.

The older generation with the strong morals, parenting skills and courage remember Christmas as a time when functional, self-sufficient families gathered after church to share good food, laughter and traditional dances. All today's kids can remember from last Christmas is fighting and drunkenness and the interviews they had to give police when their little friends were raped.

Worst of all, we are increasingly being left with a population that does not even understand the gravity of its situation. As Noel Pearson says, the dysfunction has become "normalised".

I have been frustrated to the point of pain at times over the unwillingness in these communities to face the problems and a tendency to smack down those who try. I could not fathom the possibility that so many people in a community would "not care" about their children. The dysfunction has become so deep that many people do not even realise the damage that is being done to their young people.

They hardly bat an eyelid at events that would make your stomach churn. A young mother in a drunken state beats her young child with a stick and screams that she is going to kill him. The next day, that same mother, sober, hugs her child and does not even think about the lasting emotional scars. Why would she when her mother did the same to her, and her neighbours do the same, and no one has ever told her that it is wrong?

I can see now what I couldn't understand before - why a person could feed their child hardly at all, sporadically send them to school, yell at them, criticise them, beat them and then still genuinely be heartbroken, despairing and confused when their child is removed from them. Some people, in their heart, really didn't realise that what they were doing was so bad. In fact, you'll often hear someone say, "But why did I lose my kid for that when I know many other families who are doing the same or worse?"

Read the rest here

Dr Wieland was sacked by the Queensland Govt for appealing to the Prime Minister (then John Howard) about the problems of child sex abuse.

The people in charge of the QLD Govt - who sacked Dr Wieland - are now sitting in positions of power in Australia.

Its beyond tragic.


Stephanie Young said...

Indeed - I cant agree more. We think in these idealised frames even if the facts dont fit in, acknowledging only the existence of our internal mental state; and as self absorbed creatures, we dont regard it unless it affects us. Seems pretty commonsense, but I gotta admit subconsciously i commit the same crime all the time.

Yauming YMC said...

everyone does this in some form or another - but when it injures the lives of other people - and we consciously refuse to see that, that really does become unforgivable. One abused Aboriginal girl was returned back to the same community where her rapists were waiting. The case worker who sent her back claims she needed to belong to her people, despite being very happy with the foster family she was with. She was gang raped again! However the judge and prosecutor decided not to jail the offenders- claiming cultural sensitivity as an excuse!!! I mean, WTF ????

Stephanie Young said...

far out! and Rudd says "It is based on the need for justice,”..