Uncovering the Horrifying History of Indigenous Killings in Australia
Will we ever be brave enough to face our past and work towards a better future for Indigenous Australians?
David Marr’s new book, Killing for Country, delves into the dark and brutal history of his family’s involvement in the systematic killing of Aborigines in NSW and Queensland. The book is not only disturbing for its documentation of large-scale killings, but also for the chilling conversations among white people about these atrocities. Despite protests and knowledge of the killings, they continued for decades. Let’s explore the shocking details of this forgotten history.
Marr’s book shines a light on the cruel and calculated actions of his ancestors who worked as professional killers of Aborigines in the 19th century. These were not isolated incidents or crimes committed during early white settlement. Instead, they were systematic efforts to exterminate Indigenous people who had been living on their lands for thousands of years. Some of the victims were peacefully coexisting on stations or even working in towns.
The horror of Marr’s story clashes with the perception we have of ourselves and the ideals on which our nation was founded. As former chief justice Robert French pointed out, our Constitution was created with great ambitions for a united and fair Australia. However, the reality of the widespread killings and the indifference towards them reveal a darker side to our history.
French draws a parallel between the past and the present, highlighting how the current debate on Indigenous recognition resonates with the opposition faced by federation and the Constitution. Back then, there was skepticism, fear of change, and a lack of understanding. These sentiments continue to hinder progress today.
The Voice, a proposal for a permanent advisory body to the parliament and executive, has become a contentious issue in the Indigenous recognition debate. The debate itself has been marred by racism, misinformation, and a lack of rational discussion. Instead of having an honest conversation about the symbolic and practical benefits of the Voice for Indigenous Australians, politicians and the media have perpetuated division and confusion.
Former prime ministers John Howard and Tony Abbott, who previously expressed support for Indigenous recognition and the need to address Indigenous disadvantage, now actively campaign against the Voice. Their stance contradicts their previous statements and perpetuates a flawed debate. It seems that some leaders and media outlets are more interested in maintaining the status quo than in supporting positive change.
Despite the mounting evidence and calls for recognition, it appears that change is being blocked. The truth about Australia’s history and the ongoing effects of colonisation often get overshadowed by fear, misinformation, and political agendas. Will we ever be willing to confront our past and make meaningful changes for Indigenous Australians?
- David Marr’s new book uncovers his family’s history as professional killers of Aborigines in the mid-1800s
- The book reveals the systemic shooting and poisoning of Indigenous people living on their ancestral lands
- The killings persisted until at least the 1890s
- The book challenges Australia’s self-image and the ideals of federation and the Constitution
David Marr’s book sheds light on a dark and forgotten chapter of Australian history: the systematic killings of Indigenous people by his own family. It challenges our perception of ourselves as a fair and just nation and exposes the hypocrisy and opportunism that have plagued the Indigenous recognition debate. The voices calling for change are often drowned out by fear, racism, and misinformation. Will we ever be brave enough to face our past and work towards a better future for Indigenous Australians?