My principal comment about the 1967 Referendum is that 10% …

Comment on How did Alice Springs respond to the 1967 referendum? by Ted Egan.

My principal comment about the 1967 Referendum is that 10% of Australia voted “NO”.
The issues were nothing to do with voting rights or drinking rights, as is commonly believed, but the clause “Aboriginal natives shall not be counted” was to be repealed and the power to make (favourable) laws in respect of First Australians was to be established.
Over and above these specific issues, the basic mindset of voters was: “Do you consider Aboriginals to be human beings?” and (applause) 90% voted “YES”.
But the 10% NO vote came from predictable areas where there was a history of sad, bad race relations: Walgett, Gnowangerup, Roebourne, Port Augusta etc.
I recall that in the NT at that time there was anger that we were denied a vote but also I felt that the overall NT mood was that we, too, were thereby denied the opportunity to vote “NO”.
There were strident “NO” demos in Alice Springs. Remember that those were the days when the very words “land rights” started many a blue in many NT pubs.
So we are perhaps not as squeaky clean as we like to believe.

Recent Comments by Ted Egan

Say no to no go, urge anti-frackers
Readers are invited to Google the map of the Great Artesian Basin and contemplate the outcome of fracking.
Fracking anywhere, at this stage of lack of knowledge, is nothing short of lunacy.
I hope it will be the major issue in the next NT election.


Ted Egan: Forget splitting hairs, counting drops of blood.
To Rose Jones
You ask: If you have a royal ancestor, are you necessarily superior?
No, and I am not asserting that First Australians are in any way superior: but they are primus inter pares, first among equals, if they can establish (necessary) genetic links to Australia dating beyond 1787.
The Queen gets recognition because of her family tree.
All persons have rights to property and other inheritances.
We base everything in life on inheritance: we draw up wills to enable our descendants to maintain the same rights to property that we accumulated.
All I am asking for is accurate history to be established in this country.


Town Council: protect Alice water from fracking
Fracking is lunacy. If you don’t know all the answers to all the questions, leave well enough alone.


St Francis House: Excellence sought and achieved
What a wonderful reminiscence this has been. What achievers!
Congratulations to all parties concerned.
I have been honoured by involvement with many of the lads in various capacities and they are all a credit to our First Australians.


Council: fob off, rejection, and secret moves
I find this hard to believe. The council is housed in the only buildings of “heritage consequence” erected in post war Alice Springs and now it is proposed to pull those buildings down and create something that will probably have the same aesthetic quality as the monstrous Supreme Court. Bring back Andrew McPhee and let’s talk sense again in this town.
And let’s for a change listen to the First Australians, whose acknowledged leaders say yes to either an Aboriginal Art Gallery or (better in my opinion) a Cultural Centre, BUT for traditional reasons, build it south of The Gap.


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