LETTERS 3.6.17

Xenophobia
I WOULD like to comment on Dr Pauline Farley’s response to Jasmine Kazlauskas’ revealing and relevant Thinking Allowed, “Welcome to Oz”.
Silence is to agree, therefore I must respond to the Dr Farley’s comment ‘anyone born in Australia is indigenous’.
I suggest she read some of the history documenting the original invasion of this country referred to by Jasmine Kazlauskas.
This would place the meaning of ‘indigenous’ into some context.
Henry Reynolds has written several accounts of early colonisation.
Each new wave of migrants has added to the rich cultural diversity that forms Australia today.
Note also how each wave has met with xenophobic reactions similar to those recently enflamed by some politicians and shock jocks.
A Zeck
Reuben St, Beaconsfield

“Facts”
DR PAULINE FARLEY takes Jasmine Kaslauskas’ Thinking Allowed piece to task as “not thinking” and “spouting simplistic, wrong-headed negative and leftist cant” and to demonstrate this presents what she terms ‘two facts’, both of which are wrong.
She claims that “anyone who is born in a country is ‘indigenous’ to the country”. Wrong! The Cambridge dictionary describes indigenous as ‘naturally existing in a country rather than arriving from another place’.
Whilst thinking aloud a person might want to to take the argument that Dr Farley does but a critical thinker, such as an academically qualified Dr, would come to the conclusion that ‘naturally existing’ relates to its pre-existing condition; eg, kangaroos are indigenous to Australia, despite some being taken and born in other countries.
To consider otherwise defeats the meaning of the term.
Similarly, to argue that “it is false and offensive to remark that the British ‘invaded’ Australia” is problematic.
To be offended, as clearly Dr Farley is, is one thing, but to argue that the statement is false does not sit well and in itself is offensive.
The British did come armed with the intention to subjugate the [indigenous]  occupants and to occupy for their own purpose.
These are the ‘facts’, they met resistance with force and over a hundred years later still excluded the native peoples of Australia from being citizens—that was not changed until just 50 years ago.
There is plenty of evidence that the non-indigenous authorities in Australia expected that the indigenous people would either die out or be bred out of existence and that is offensive!
Jim Meckelburg
Davies Street, Beaconsfield

Unfair tax
RAISING taxes on rental properties is an unfair way for governments to raise further revenue.
Raising taxes such as land tax only hurts the small end of town, such as a young person trying to save enough for a deposit on a house, gets hit by the landlord raising the rent to cover the tax.
Owner occupiers of a home do not pay land tax
All commercial properties get hit with land tax; the big companies simply pass on any costs on to the consumer; the struggling small businesses can’t always do this.
Frank Granger
Melville Bch Rd, Applecross

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