Russell@5. Thanks Russell for saying you believe that my statements …

Comment on Send in the taskforce: councillor by Ray.

Russell@5. Thanks Russell for saying you believe that my statements appear racist, rather than saying I am racist. A nice change. When you consider that my initial comment was in response to the police being attacked in a town camp, then yes, I make no bones in saying that this is an Aboriginal issue. I did not however say that they social dysfunction is caused purely by aboriginal people. Although it somewhat pains me, I tend to agree with your statement that there are many other interest groups that have led to the issues that we have today. My comment about broadening your scope was in relation to your talk about tightening the supply of grog. I believe there are many many other issues that need to be addressed AS WELL AS the grog issue.
I am restricted by what I can and can’t say due to obligations to my employer, so sometimes I cannot give all the details I want to, this is also why I do not use my last name. Not withstanding the use of my last name, I still enjoy the intellectual debates we have. Regardless of what side of the fence you sit on, playing devil’s advocate and reading informed rebuttal to my own ideas allows me to expand my knowledge of local issues, and enjoy being part of a group that is prepared to put their opinion forward, expecting alternative views to be expressed.
I am a very keen reader of the Alice Springs News and believe Erwin does a wonderful job in providing informed and well researched journalism, and also provides a forum for people interested in their town’s future to be heard. Many of these issues highlight the dysfunction that exists in out town, but it is up to us to solve it.
Russell I have never met you and admit I can get passionate, but thanks for taking the time to responding to my views with well informed intelligent debate.
Rex, thanks for your support mate, and Steve Brown, keep it up.
Reading the various opinions on these and similar topics simply goes to show how hard it will be to reach agreement, as we all have opinions, and we also believe that we are right.
My view is that I want the right to have a beer after work, as I do work hard, have a family, educate my kids and uphold my civil obligations, as I see them to be. My friends who visit me out here think the restrictions we have already are an absolute joke. I have heard the owners of Piggly’s and other places are complaining about the police presence outside their stores. They say that their customers are staying away in droves. Maybe they have something to hide. Outstanding warrants, trying to buy grog when intoxicated etc. maybe this action is what is needed to reduce the level of consumption that leads tho the problems we have. It may bring grog consumption back to what it should be. This is the police presence locals have been calling out for for the last tree years
It seems to be working. My whole argument has been, and still is, that if anybody wants to be a part of our community, they should be made to feel part of it, providing they abide by the rules expected by that community. This includes the responsible consumption of alcohol, making the effort to improve their lot in life, and not being over-represented on the wrong side of the law, because of their own actions.
Police are appointed to uphold the laws of the land. I respect the police, and see the crap they have to deal with. I respect the laws we live under and try to follow them. I teach my children that as well. Anybody who attacks police, in a drunken stupor to a point they have to draw tasers, should be condemned for bad behaviour, not excused. Simple. The inequity and lack of opportunity we hear trotted out went out the window years ago. We have, as a society, begun to right previous wrongs, and have bent over backwards to provide a hand up to all people. I get very upset when that hand up is spat at, and rejected because it is no longer a hand out.
I look forward to more exchanges with you. Would enjoy a chat with you, Rex and others. You can enjoy your Billy tea, but I’ll sit around the fire with a nice bottle of red, thanks.

Ray Also Commented

Send in the taskforce: councillor
Russell@1. Yes Russell you are right in whom I identify. People say that this type of behavior occurs with white people as well, but in a town of 27000 people it stands out.
Russell you always talk about alcohol issues, but I have been here 14 years and have noticed more and more restrictions coming in, yet the problems are getting worse and worse. We have had the 2 km law, that stupid one where you had to say where you are intending to drink if you buy more that $100 dollars worth of grog, abolition of long neck beer, abolition of 4 ltr casks etc, and now the ridiculous banned drinkers register that has been proven to increase break and enters for those who cannot legally buy it.
The problem is the snivel libertarians who tell people they have every right to buy grog and get shitfaced every single day. They don’t need to work, Centrelink go into the river to help people get their dole payments. You confront a person breaking into your house looking for grog, they swing at you, you hit back in self defense and they go straight to CAALAS and get free representation to take you to court.
You will most likely get off through section 27 and 29 of the criminal code act, but there is 6 months of worry where you have criminal charges hanging over your head. A normal working person has no chance of affording legal representation. This is what scares me about living in Alice Springs, and many other people I know. A kid breaks into my house, I defend myself, and they get free legal representation, funded by my taxpayer dollars, with the possibility of me going to court, getting a record, and possibly going to prison. Option 2 is take them out bush and bury them, problem solved. Am I over-reacting? You tell me, but this really how serious things are getting here.
The parents do not give a shit about their kids (no not all, but many), the pollies are too gutless / powerless to bring in real policies, and the support agencies, legal agencies and civil rights activists who have no interest in teaching responsibilities, are also the root cause of the problem. Alcohol is part of the problem, but failure to accept the past, and move into the modern world is causing hatred and preventing any chance of true reconciliation. Broaden your scope Russell, there are more issues at play here, bigger than you or I.


Send in the taskforce: councillor
So why do we need to show respect to these people and this culture again? Reconciliation is a two way street, and this has set the cause back many years in my opinion. Sad thing is many of my aboriginal friends feel the same way and it saddens them.
Not sure who reported it interstate, but I have had friends discuss this, and other similar occurrences over the years and they have been horrified. Here, we seem to accept it as just another day in the Alice. If this is the story we are sharing, as the tourist commission puts it, god help us, and the generations to come.


Recent Comments by Ray

Because of eight grandmothers we can
Would be good if this passionate grandmothers group actually taught their own children how to effectively parent their kids.
Then the government and NGOs would not need to be involved at all.
Teach and be responsible for the lives of your own children, all the way down the line. If they need time out bush, take them, 51% of the NT is Aboriginal land.
You have the power, you have the ability, find the will to do it, then these kids will avoid the criminal justice system altogether.
Walk the streets with the concerned citizens and take responsibility.


Torrent of toxic Facebook posts after Mall melee
Rosalie, we should all be concerned about these posts, but why are they racist? They very accurately describe the problem. As the article says, there is concern that 100% of the inmates in the detention center are Aboriginal, all of the kids in the mall rampage are Aboriginal. Unless we are prepared to call the issue for what it is, we are blindsiding ourselves to acknowledging what the real problem is.
Unfortunately, it has a flow-on effect to all the wonderful hard working Aboriginal people in town who keep their kids at home and send their kids to school. That is the norm.
Unfortunately, unless we identify the issue it cannot be addressed.
It’s like a farmer calling a meeting and talking about the dingo killing his newborn calves, then a greenie pipes up and says “hang on, not all dingoes are responsible”.
The farmer says OK, “a type of dog is causing problems”, once again, “you can’t blame all the dogs for the actions of the few”.
The meeting is called and the farmer explains that some type of animal is killing his livestock. “What kind of animal do we need to control,” says the decision maker.
Poor old farmer can’t be specific lest he is labeled racist. Decision maker says we can’t do anything because there is no evidence of what the farmer says. Decision maker goes away, the farmer goes broke. The end.


Will more consultants get tourism out of the mire?
Of course, the best way to get tourists here is to stop the ones that have come before, talking about the violence, humbugging, theft, assault and the sad sight of people hanging around doing … nothing. Oh except fighting near the bottleshops, in the mall, in parklands. People come here to see Aboriginal culture, what they see is anything but.
This is the image and experience that people are taking away with them, and from the papers. Darwin is the same.
It does not need a consultant, it needs a government prepared to ignore the greenies and apologists, and actually fix the problem.
It may have the added bonus of getting people to actually enjoy living here, not making plans on how and when to leave. The population of the Alice Springs local government area has dropped by almost 3500 people since 2007. That is a rather large exodus.
What plans do the governments (all levels) have to bring industry, employment, and growth to the area?
All we have seen recently is the folding of private enterprise and an increase in service and Aboriginal support agencies. We have the largest renal dialysis facility in the southern hemisphere, but that is not the sort of things to bring the tourists flooding back.
Fix these problems, and you will also fix the downturn in tourism.
Where is my consultancy fee?


Keeping youth in sight
Hi Rainer, I was going to jump straight in and have a go about the comment of youth yearning to be “heard, seen and acknowledged by adults”. I heard this on the radio and was pretty amused, so I jumped on the site and actually read your article first before flying off the handle. Also my respect for your dad and your youth means I will try and keep things toned down.
Most adults over the age of 40 were probably raised at the tail end of the era where the mantra of kids being seen and not heard was true. Basically that meant that people with life experience made the decisions, and until you lived a little you need to listen and learn before having the right to have an opinion. This was true in all civilisations and cultures, where kids sat at tribal meetings, and listened to the elders, and did not have any input.
We have come a long way since then and kids really do have a chance to be heard, but like most things in an ordered society, there are ways and means of doing these things. They will not have the respect of adults until they earn it it. They cannot change the natural order of things just because they want it changed.
They want respect? Get them to school, get them working part time jobs at Maccas or IGA or KFC. The biggest problem is not that the employer will not give them a chance, but family and peers who accuse them of being coconuts and trying to be like a white fella, that’s what we need to change.
They will get respect from adults when you can drive down Gap Road without them pretending to jump out in front of a car and trying to intimidate people. They will get respect when they go to school instead of calling into your office with energy to burn. They cannot and will not get any respect by essentially saying we do what we do because we just want you to respect us, that’s like a rapist saying he just wanted to be loved.
All the while our nightlife is dying because Alice residents live in fear of going out at night in case their car is rocked, or their house broken into by these kids when they are out. The same kids you speak to are the same ones that cause these issues, and the resentment towards them is justified because while they expect us to listen to them, they never listen to us. They steal our kids’ bikes that we work hard for, they egg our houses because we work hard for the nice things we have, they terrify the tourists who are the lifeblood of this town.
Your idea of a skate park near the CBD is great, and would be ideal along the banks of the Todd river, which is an under-utilised asset we have. The area between the Todd Tavern and the bridge would be ideal, and if it flooded, a skate park would just need to be hosed out after the water levels dropped. It could be floodlit and landscaped and yes, it would be a beautiful area for workers in the town to rest whilst enjoying their lunch break.
But these kids think it is fun to intimidate people. Unless that changes, it is hard to see the full potential and funding to achieve that vision ever being realised.
When these kids come streaming into your office, do you offer to assist them into getting into and staying in school? Could there be funding for homework centres for these kids to go to? Could your office be relocated to the entrance to the new skatepark where kids could be fed at night and a cafe set up where these bored kids could be taught how to run a canteen and have pride in their own place?
This could all be done in return for respecting the community, after all the money that is spent on any new skatepark will come from the adults who pay council rates. Respect is a two way street. Unfortunately this is unlikely as the sorts of kids we are dealing with do not like a presciptve form of entertainment. Anything that is too organised they rebel against, hence the game of getting chased by coppers is more valued by them than any sort of skatepark. Keep up the good writing.


Government backflips on alcohol floor price: Lambley
Just looked at the number of 24hr bottle shops in Melbourne from as far north as Preston and south to St Kilda. There are 11.
Not counting 24 hour operators, there are over 170 in a similar area.
In Alice Springs, there are 10, although AA is actually listed as a takeaway bottle shop, so lets say 9. There is also home delivery of alcohol in Melbourne, so every house virtually has a bottle shop if they have a telephone.
Yet despite these figures, we are the ones with a sheer number of takeaway alcohol? I don’t think it is the number of outlets we have, nor is it the opening hours.
Maybe it is something else?


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