Hi Russell, glad to see that three words could stir …

Comment on Trees on Melanka block no longer sacred? by Ray.

Hi Russell, glad to see that three words could stir up such a response. How dare you say I am a newcomer? I have been annoying you for years.
My three word initial comment simply stated the obvious. Aboriginal groups are able to negotiate with mining companies (for example) on the exploration / mining on their land.
By negotiate, I mean an agreement to do a certain activity for a particular consideration (money). Many mining companies have been charged and fined for damaging sacred sites.
So one group has agreed to be awarded compensation for the damage caused by the other.
The importance of the site can/has sometimes determined the monetary penalty. You can google that to find the factual links.
Hence, to some degree, sacredness = dollar value is correct.
I remember being told that an event I organized needed a welcome to country speech. I thought OK that’s a nice gesture, and when approaching the appropriate body, was told “yes would love to, the fee will be $300”.
I was gobsmacked that the opportunity to share culture with visitors from around the country was accompanied by a fee schedule.
Sometimes a simple comment is enough to start a conversation, which was my intention, and that worked quite well. Just because I choose not to have my full name published does not invalidate my right to an opinion, it could be that public comment on a public forum and having different opinion to the populist thinking, could be against a policy I work under.

Ray Also Commented

Trees on Melanka block no longer sacred?
@ Just Sayin. I agree, there is that side to it as well. My point was that under an Indigenous land use agreement, native title can be extinguished, if the monetary compensation is agreed upon. Everything has its price, if the price is right.
Those who choose to be offended by this will be, not much I can do about that.
Your comments about respecting culture and sacred sites are interesting.
I was unaware that business oportunities to bring tourists into town have been scrapped because we don’t show enough respect and therefore trust does not follow. This is a shame.
Which proposals were they, because the number of bookstores and galleries in town that promote Aboriginal culture are impressive, not to mention the quality of work done by CAAMA that show a culture thriving with modern technology.
Are you referring to the respect and trust shown to local business in town that are actually running and bringing tourists into town that are smashed up, are pelted with rocks, broken into, used as a toilets, etc?
Trust and respect are a two way street, and non-indigenous attractions are also responsible for bringing tourists into town as well.
There is both black and white history in this town, and tourists come here to experience both.
Or maybe they come here for one and learn about the other, how’s that for a win win?
I believe that many developers would be keen to get involved with a project on the Melanka site, but who wants to touch it with the complications of those sacred trees?
I am sure that if one of them died due to construction activity, a huge fine would be written into the contract (dollar value).
Instead, we have an unkempt eyesore in town that could be transformed into something amazing, but it just sits there until the price is right, or they blow over in the next big storm. If it was the tree itelf that was sacred, would a solution be to propogate a cutting and plant that in a place acceptable to the Arrente?
I remember that idea working for a single pine tree that featured on the Turkish peninsula just over 100 years ago.


Trees on Melanka block no longer sacred?
Sacredness = dollar value.


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Let’s hope she takes it to Worksafe NT, as there are certainly some breaches here.
Every workplace needs a health and safety rep.


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Ultimately it is the bosses’ responsibility to assess the hazard and manage the risk, and yes, the worker has the right to refuse unsafe work.
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