@ Just Sayin. I agree, there is that side to …

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

@ 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.

Ray Also Commented

Trees on Melanka block no longer sacred?
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.


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


Recent Comments by Ray

When NT was officially ‘a country for the White Man’
Ted is a marvellous ambassador for the NT, and a compelling author, and in the context of this article, it is explained well how the White Australia Policy influenced the selection and appointment of the ruling class, elected leaders or members of the establishment.
At first glance however, it is easy to see how people are confusing the White Australia Policy with policy applying to Aboriginal people.
There was never an actual white Australia Policy, rather it was an ideal, and a way of thinking that was common in that era, however it was primarily directed towards immigration, in that we should only accept immigration from Anglo-Saxon countries, not Asians, or other non-white backgrounds.
This is easy to see in the article above, however looking at posts in facebook and general conversation, it seems many, particularly the younger generation seem to believe in some myths in the history of our country are built on misinformation, or partial truths.
An example of this is the ongoing myth that Aborigines were treated as flora or fauna up until 1967, or that was the first time they were given the vote at that time.
In an era when we should be looking at accepting a few home truths on our way to reconciliation, we need to ensure that these untruths are corrected as well. Looking forward to Ted’s book.


On youth prisons: grandmothers, reformers, revolutionaries
@ Jameel: I really hope you are being sarcastic when you say “who are they?”
Do I really need to explain that “they” are the grandmothers that are calling for these young ones to go out bush, learn their ways and culture and be removed from town instead of being locked up. This used to be done in the 70s, when the young ones were going off the rails, they were sent to family on out stations, where they learnt their “cultural responsibilities”.
Unfortunately all these solutions are suggested when it is too late.
Only after the kids have robbed, stolen, destroyed, harassed, broken etc, and they have been to court, and sent to detention as a last resort to these so called concerned grandmothers shake their heads about what would be best for the kids.
Surely if they had these concerns, they would have sent the kids out bush when they first started getting into trouble.
With such a strong and close family bond, these grandmothers know what the kids are up to, and they certainly have family who live out bush who could take these kids for a while, like used to happen.
Unfortunately these family structures have broken down, and it is now easier to blame everybody else for their woes, because they can no longer control their own kids appalling behavior, lack of respect and willingness to use violence.


On youth prisons: grandmothers, reformers, revolutionaries
With 51% of the NT being Aboriginal land, why are they not doing this?


Helping offenders on probation and parole stay out of gaol
Wow, can anything be done these days without a fancy sounding acronym? It seems other programs have Frustrated All Involved Leading to Extended Discussions (FAILED), so let’s hope this is not just a load of Creative Repeating of yet Another Program (CRAP).


Police clash with protestors
He was too close to an arrest. It takes a number of officers to do this safely, to control the head of the subject, arms legs etc.
Police need to move around the subject quickly to ensure they are safe during the process. That photographer was too close and impeding the police officers movements as can be clearly seen in the video.
If you are told to move by police, you move. Simple.
It is not up to the public to question the way the coppers do their job.
In the “heat of battle” they do hard jobs that you and many others are not prepared to do. Do not judge them when they are doing their lawful duties. Back away, let them work. Simple.


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