Sorry doesnt go far enough

Kevin Rudd, on behalf of his Government and the Parliament, did what John Howards Coalition wouldnt do. He did it so simply, so eloquently, so sincerely and without qualification.

It was an emotional and memorable day.

There was no bitterness, just a mix of sadness and joy, of remembering and a readiness to forgive.

The apology was accepted, just as we knew it would be. But why had it taken so long?

It wasnt welcomed by all Australians. Some hold prejudices that are deeply entrenched. Others are callously indifferent to what happened in the past and some always find a reason to oppose anything that promotes the well-being of Aboriginal people. Its always been that way.

Even Brendan Nelson, in his speech, showed that hed forgotten what the day was about.

The apology didnt go far enough. The opportunity should have been taken to acknowledge the many injustices suffered by Aboriginal Australians over the past 200 years.

Nevertheless, the day belonged to the Kooris, the Murris, and the Noongars.

We once walked across bridges for reconciliation but Howard saw that nothing came of it. The Rudd Government, with or without the Coalitions support, must work with the Aboriginal people to ensure that doesnt happen again.

Barry Walsh


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