Live blogging at the Telegraph on the Stolen Generations

The Senate Committee report into my legislation on a compensation system for the Stolen Generations was tabled yesterday. The Committee didn’t directly support a national system of compensation, but did put forward some other useful recommendations. You can read my additional comments at this link.

The Daily Telegraph has invited me to ‘debate’ people and answers questions live through their website at 9am tomorrow (Wednesday). You can ask a question or contribute by going to this link.

Given that the official position of both the Labor and Liberals parties is opposed to a national system of compensation (despite both parties supporting a compensation tribunal in Tasmania), I wasn’t expecting the Committee members to adopt the principle of my legislation. But I think the report recognises there is validity in such an approach and provides a way for members and supporters of the Stolen Generations to keep making their case. This in turn should increase the pressure on those opposed to it to make a better case against than they have to date, or propose better alternatives to address the ongoing harm.

UPDATE: The Daily Telegraph page is not closed, but Andrew Bolt has taken up the cudgels (yet again) on behalf of the denialists, continuing his campaign trying to deny the historical and current reality of the Stolen Generations. This campaign basically consists of asserting that they don’t exist and demanding someone name ten people who were stolen. Apparently the fact the more than ten of the people who provided submissions to the Senate Inquiry identified themselves as members of the Stolen Generations doesnt count, and nor does the fact that the Tasmanian Stolen Generations Assessor has paid compensation to more than ten people.

Mostly I just feel bemusement at the ferocious determination of some people to ignore the bits of history that they find inconvient or unpleasant or that don’t fit their current ideological narrative. However, one can’t ignore the fact that trying to pretend this sort of wrongdoing didn’t occur compounds the harm and hurt that has been done, and make it more difficult to resolve some of the current problems which it helped generate.

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6 Comments

  1. Good to see your blog back in action, and also to hear that it will continue after 30 June. The response at the Terrorgraph site and in Bolt’s blog is to be expected. It will be a long struggle, I suspect.

  2. Why didn’t you answer Andrew Bolt’s questions, instead of piffling on like a politician? Whoops, I suppose you are a politician and are physically incapable of a straight answer to a straight question.

  3. Moriarty, there is rather a large difference between not answering a question, compared to giving an answer that you don’t like.

    I have answered Mr Bolt’s question. The fact that my answer doesn’t accord with the mythology he, and presumably you, are trying to perpetuate is not my problem. I am not the one trying to deny historical and current reality, so your suggestion that I can’t or won’t give a straight answer is risible.

  4. Senator Bartlett: Thanks for the link above to the Bolt position.

    It seems to me that his request to “name 10 names” is quite provocative, yet patently simple. I think the point he’s getting at is that there is no shortage of people identifying themselves as members of the Stolen Generation, but a paucity of victims with any bona fides to substantiate that they were needlessly removed from their home environment.

    “Just 10”?

    You are doubtless aware that he also claims that the Tasmanian Assessor does not determine the reason Aborigines claiming compensation were “stolen”. You are quoted as saying “all claims were tested and assessed. Some were knocked back”. Could you clarify how this operates or point me to details of the nature of the testing/assessing?

  5. Anyone who seriously thinks that anything coming out of the Telegraph is worth reasonable, logical thought is wasting their valuable time. Further, anyone falling for Andrew Bolt’s revolting attitudes to people who’ve suffered horribly as those members of the Stolen Generations have and do, is giving him more credibility than he deserves. He & the Telegraph’s reputation, based on blatant racism, sexism & extremist views, deserve each other! If he’d watched documentaries over the years, even during the week of the long overdue apology, he’d be able to give the rest of us more than 10 names. What a ?????

    What if everyone who showed compassion for people with cancer had to produce 10 sufferers before they were given any credibility? This man is an overblown arrogant, self-opinionated man who deserves only the ‘wiggling of my little finger’ in response to his rants! (I trust that the understanding of this has reached outside NSW?- if not, I’ll explain!)

  6. Naomi: If your post was in any way intended to respond to my comments, I strike it as non responsive.

    I wouldn’t throw the “arrogant” and “self-opinionated” labels around too freely if I was you.

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