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Tuesday 24 January 2023

National Identity and Australia Day

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National Identity And Australia Day

If your view of national identity is state derived, that is, you believe you can change your national identity through changing your citizenship, and your national identity is what your passport says it is, and being a nation is only valid in the era of the "nation-state", then you would find it very hard to understand why any Australian citizen would hate Australia day. It's the national day, its a celebration of all Australians. Why would anyone be against this?

However, if your idea of national identity is defined by ethnic, cultural and linguistic background, and derived from people who are connected by nativity (i.e. birth and kinship) which is how the Bible defines it, and it is understood in most of history, and what the word actually means, then Australia day is not for all people in this country. It is something that the largely British and Irish descended Australians can celebrate (who happen to be the majority), but it is a reminder to many Indigenous Australians that they are no longer sovereign in their ancestral lands.

Not all feel this way of course, and readers could easily comment here and point out prominent examples of Indigenous Australians who love celebrating Australia day. Readers could also talk about how British settlement improved the land, brought Christianity with it, suppressed certain pagan practices that weren't good, and created one of the greatest nations in the world today. I get it, I have written about it, and know this better than most.

But I can tell you this, as the son of an Englishman, I would never celebrate the landing of William the Conqueror at Pevensey, in the south of England. If I was a Norman in 11th Century England or Normandy I might. It does not matter how your land is taken from you, the result is all that matters, and people struggle with loss of national sovereignty (by that I simply mean being ruled by your own kin ([cf. Deut. 17:15]). I understand why many Indigenous do not celebrate Australia Day. It's not because of the left (though the left exploit it and increase the divisions for political gain) it is because they are not sovereign in their own land. Something the Anglo-Saxons resented for the entire existence of the Norman dynasty which ruled them, and you can't in all honesty pretend there was some version of our modern left in Norman England. 

As the son of an Englishman, I do celebrate Australia Day, because it reminds us of the first fleet that brought the great British way of life here to Australia. I know many people of different ethnicities who love the British ways of common law, and liberty, and think that England created some of the best civilisations in history. But many Anglo-Saxons did not care how the Norman conquests lifted the standing of England in Germanic and Frankish parts of Europe. They did not care about the European refinements to their language and culture. They just wanted to live under Anglo-Saxon kings in England, the land of the Angles.

Before you reflexively seek to say, "Oh Matt is pushing lefty talking points now", note this: we are the Indigenous now. Just as they lost their land to mostly peaceful settlers moving in and making it a different place, so too is the same thing happening to us, the Anglo-Saxon, Celtic Aussies. If you are honest about what is happening to our way of life, you can then see it from the Indigenous perspective more clearly. 

I will be celebrating Australia day, I know people of many different national identities who will be too, but I understand why some won't be. And it's not always a lefty thing, people long to live free, and by free I don't mean the modern Satano-libertarian do whatever you want degenerate pseudo-freedom. I mean free from foreign rule. All people's long for this.

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