Clarification: My last post is an extract from the front …

Comment on Send in the taskforce: councillor by Ian Sharp.

Clarification: My last post is an extract from the front page article in Monday’s Australian … re the NT Police Association submission to the Coroner in the Briscoe Inquest.

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Send in the taskforce: councillor
POLICE say they are on the frontline of the battle against Aboriginal disadvantage in central Australia, facing a “maelstrom” of alcohol and violence so relentless that policing it becomes soul-destroying.
In a powerful submission into the death in custody of Aboriginal man Kwementyaye Briscoe, 27, the Northern Territory Police Association has said the force is dealing with the consequences of decades of government policy failure that are so entrenched they have become “a stain on the whole community of the Northern Territory”.
The submission, made by the association’s legal counsel, Lex Silvester, argues the job of putting drunk people in protective custody is a large proportion of police work and “is of such mind-numbing, de-sensitising and soul-destroying work as to be heroic”.
The submission attacks the “failed” alcohol policies of the Territory, saying grog laws are “generous, lightly regulated” and support the “vested interests” of the alcohol industry.


Send in the taskforce: councillor
Thank heavens for Bob Durnan being prepared to use his long experience, his intellect and his time to thoughtfully respond on this website.


Recent Comments by Ian Sharp

Aboriginal flag on Anzac Hill: the nays have it 
The hill has been Untyeyetwelye to the Arrernte people for thousands of years. According to Peter Donovan (who wrote ‘Alice Springs, its history and the people who made it’ for the Town Council, published 1988) in the early days of European settlement the townspeople called it ‘View Hill’, and later ‘Stott Hill’. The RSL was granted ‘rights’ to the hill in 1934 by government, not by the Traditional Owners. The RSL then named it ‘Anzac Hill’.

Of course this was done at a time when Aboriginal people were unwelcome in the town, they were shunted down to ‘The Gap’, or confined to missions. Surely we have moved on since then? Is it so hard to envisage that the hill could serve both as war memorial and a symbol of the changed relations between our Indigenous people and our European settlers? It is more than strange that the capital city of The Centre, the heartland of the desert peoples, does not fly the Aboriginal Flag from the hill the overlooks our town.


Aboriginal flag on Anzac Hill: the nays have it 
Crikey, what a whacky decision. Makes Alice look just like how many people in our country perceive it. And makes the Council look like drongoes. But I live in hope, been re-watching ‘Grassroots’ lately, the Mayor always meant well, but became known as Col ‘U-turn’ Dunkley as ‘circumstances changed’ Let’s hope circumstances change here too. Hopefully not everyone positioning for preselection for higher office.


What will our cultural celebrations look like in a generation?
John, I think you are seeing the issue in black and white, two extremes.
There is a lot in between. We have not always seen ourselves as an independent nation, we used to see ourselves as citizens of The Empire, many people called Britain “home”. Things change.
We are no longer the country we once were. We don’t turn a blind eye to domestic violence anymore, cops do not go ‘poofta bashing’, pedophile priests are no longer just moved to another parish, Carlton can no longer buy premierships.
And change continues with each generation. We will in fact have a stronger national identity when we get rid of the colonial flag, when we have an Australian Head of State (not just an Australian representative for the British monarch), and a day that ALL Australians can celebrate as their national day.
Of course we won’t get there through reasoned argument, we will get there the same way we got rid of the White Australia Policy, the older generation of believers will pass away and a new national identity will be forged.
So we can say weare no longer the country we once were, and our great grand kids will say this too in their turn, about “our” Australia. That tide of history just keeps on.


What will our cultural celebrations look like in a generation?
An excellent article. On the money for mine. The tide of history will wash the current flag and Australia Day (Jan 26) away.


Hazardous waste facility near Alice recommended by EPA
For those interested in the Tellus proposal: http://www.tellusholdings.com/project_chandler_fact_sheets.html


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