The following blog post was inspired by a suggestion from Skinny Cap reader Jayde, who wrote to me: “I hear people complaining all the time in the media about things like the mining tax and asylum seekers, claiming ‘we have to pay more’ or ‘asylum seekers should be sent back’ when we live in such an amazing country. We have constant power, running water, great roads, schools and hospitals, are not under attack by guerilla military and don’t live in a country run under a dictatorship. So why are aren’t Australians more grateful?”
I may not have the most expensive or showy car, the biggest house on the block or millions of dollars stashed away in a hideaway safe but for what I do have in life, I couldn’t be more grateful and when Jayde raised this topic with me some time back, I too was baffled with some of the attitudes I’ve seen around town.
Prime example, and quite topical with the issue of asylum seekers – I’ve seen numerous decal car stickers in the shape of our country with the words “F#@$ off, we’re full” written inside it. If that’s not a declaration of one’s pessimistic thoughts on asylum seekers and immigrants, I seriously don’t know what is and quite frankly, believe it’s a discriminatory public assertion.
I’d like to remind those sticker holders that Australia’s modern civilisation was built from the backbone of immigrants. Do you need a lesson in where the first settlers and explorers came from? Or would you like to attend a year three workshop at your local primary school to learn it was white people who arrived on the shores and took over the lands from the indigenous? Not too long ago too in global historical terms, might I add.
“F#@$ off, we’re full” is an indication of the ungrateful mindset of what hundreds of thousands of Australians provide to their society; we are considered a multicultural population thanks to people from all walks of life. Everyone, except the Aboriginal people, came from outside Australia.
In more recent years, I’ve met an abundance of people from everywhere – South Africa, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Japan and the North and South Americas. Some escaped hardship, others not but no matter their reasons, in the end these newfound Aussies are incredibly reliable and committed to their jobs, their families, their friendships and their new home country. They don’t sit on the dole, taking working Australians’ tax money.
As the child of immigrants myself, I am ever so grateful for the opportunity my parents were given in staying here and have learned that everything I own and do in life is well earned and well deserved. Why should my family and I be selfish in what we have? Why not allow other people in the world to have the same life as us if they so wish?
Perhaps those who believe in “F#@$ off, we’re full” would be so kind as to explain what it is they are so strongly against? Did you know there are people out there in war torn countries and dictatorships who only dream of having your Australian way of life? Away from rape, torture, murder, bombings and a silenced voice that will never be heard?
What makes these people think so negatively about the human species? Can Australians really be that harsh and unkind?