Mater’s Musings #37: Grievance Day

At the end of the second day of a module designed to teach the kids about The Great War (obviously designed to coincide with Remembrance Day), my son poses to me the following question just before dinner:

“Dad, why did Aboriginals play such a big part in World War 1, and why were they treated so badly afterwards?”

Before he’d even finished the second part of the question, I had clear visions of the form these lessons would have taken, and the depth (or lack thereof) to which some of the more notable events of the conflicts would have been covered (or not). Modern education! Two days into World War 1, and we are already into the discrimination schtick.

Don’t get me wrong, the topic is important and one deserving of attention by those well versed in the history of the times, as a niche topic of interest with significant nuances.

Currently, my son can’t pronounce ‘the Somme’, and when quizzed, guessed that ‘Beersheba’ might be the product of a Trentham micro-brewery. His great-great-grandfather was killed at Passchendaele, and his best guess at what that was, suggested something a girl might do behind the school shelter shed. No, my son isn’t nearly knowledgable enough about The Great War, yet, to justify wandering off the reservation into the realm of leftist talking points and the standard grievance-mongering.

The whole episode is just another example of the lack of the one thing that seems to be so lacking in just about every conversation or news item today…perspective!

Without perspective, much of the information which passes as fact nowadays may as well be a complete fabrication. In covering a war that killed around 40 million people, that his lessons lead him to believe that Australian Aboriginals played a “big part”, is a testament to this. There was nothing ‘unfactual’ about what he was taught, but the lack of perspective lead him to the wrong conclusion. Now, where have I seen this in the brave new world of Covid?

P.S. Whilst I didn’t mention it to him, I wonder what his teacher might say about the fact that my son’s father fought in three different theatres of war, and is no longer allowed to enter a cafe, pub, restaurant, school, stadium…or attend his graduation. I bet there’d be some choice perspective around that!

46 thoughts on “Mater’s Musings #37: Grievance Day”

  1. Without perspective, much of the information which passes as fact nowadays may as well be a complete fabrication.

    Doesn’t mater how much news you read you will only get the news curated for impact.


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  2. “Dad, why did Aboriginals play such a big part in World War 1, and why were they treated so badly afterwards?”

    Mater, obviously this is nonsense, right? This is what he’s getting from school?


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  3. Mater, obviously this is nonsense, right? This is what he’s getting from school?

    Unfortunately, no. Not nonsense.
    That is word for word his question to me.

    Maybe the Aboriginal grievances around WW1 is all his teacher is familiar enough with to impart. I suspect, however, that it’s an easy way to include Aboriginal issues into the topic, as curriculum guidelines dictate (Cross-curriculum Priorities).


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  4. Okay. What I meant was that it’s actual nonsense aboriginals played a big part in WW1. It’s just not true, right? I’m asking because I thought I may have missed something in my history.


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  5. From the article, up to 3,000 enlisted from over 400,000. It is a “part”, but not a big one. Could be proportionate to population.

    Difficult to gauge because there was no “Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander” box to tick on the enlistment forms.


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  6. Okay. What I meant was that it’s actual nonsense aboriginals played a big part in WW1. It’s just not true, right? I’m asking because I thought I may have missed something in my history.

    No, you didn’t miss anything.
    Best estimates are about 1000 out of nearly 417000 men who enlisted.

    Their service is honourable, and not completely insignificant, but it shouldn’t be the focus when teaching the basics of the conflict, and Australia’s part in it.

    I’ve served along side men and women of nearly every ethnic background (including Aboriginals). I’ve never categorised them as anything but Australian soldiers, sailors or airmen.

    That they focus on doing this shits me no end. That they forego the basics of history in favour of this divisive rot, is a clear reflection on education today and why we are in such a mess.


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  7. The fundamental problem with the curriculum is the requirement for cross curriculum priorities in every discipline. It’s how when building a decorative cardboard letter box grade 2 kids also have to discuss the indigenous and environmental aspects of their design.

    And write ups. It is how girls thrash boys in The national curriculum industrial art subject (or whatever it is called these days) as the girls put more effort into the project write up than the project itself, and the boys just want to make a great tool box. The boy could build the most beautiful rocking chair, but if he doesn’t also do a detailed project paper including the HR and OH&S aspects of chair building, he won’t get a good mark. And the kid building a rough job chair but an extensive project description, well they could get that year’s subject prize.


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  8. The fundamental problem with the curriculum is the requirement for cross curriculum priorities in every discipline. It’s how when building a decorative cardboard letter box grade 2 kids also have to discuss the indigenous and environmental aspects of their design.

    This!


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  9. Perhaps Mater you could make calli’s point:

    Difficult to gauge because there was no “Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander” box to tick on the enlistment forms

    Perhaps the teacher needs to know that the people enlisted as Australians – perhaps race didn’t matter so much back then.


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  10. I had a suspicion the 3,000 number may have been inflated to suit the article. You have to sift through the exaggerations and lies to work out what’s true or false.

    The Soldier Settlement Scheme – refusal to grant land to the indigenous, while non-indigenous were granted land that was too small/unsuitable. Who were the winners here?


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  11. Everything can be racist if you want it to be.

    Sadly, it means missing the essential nature of the thing as you impose upon it an artificial construct. In the end, it robs the world of sense and the heart of joy.


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  12. Reminds me of when No.2 son had to do a school assignment on the ‘Stolen Generation.’
    I have always kicked myself that I didn’t write the assignment for him.


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  13. Entropy,
    Spot on. I am working as a casual supply teacher this week and so far have taken 3 year 8 English classes where they are working through rabbit proof fence. They are treating it as a comparison, book vs film ie what does the book say, what does the film do with that chapter of the book, what choices did director make etc. I have been playing it straight bat, but teachers are injecting commentary. The kids hate it.

    I have also covered a year 10 humanities… Task you are a social justice advocate and have been tasked with writing a report to the UN on Bikie laws or refugees, or protest laws or(forgotten). Include references to UDRM , Federal laws, Qld human rights Act, refugee convention etc. A few kids had to change their conclusions when I pointed out the “these rights don’t apply when …” clauses in the Qld Human Rights Act.


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  14. That they focus on doing this shits me no end. That they forego the basics of history in favour of this divisive rot, is a clear reflection on education today and why we are in such a mess.

    +1


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  15. Entropy

    The boy could build the most beautiful rocking chair, but if he doesn’t also do a detailed project paper including the HR and OH&S aspects of chair building, he won’t get a good mark. And the kid building a rough job chair but an extensive project description, well they could get that year’s subject prize.

    I’m reminded of the passage in the “Restaurant at the end of the universe”, after the B ark has crashed on Earth. The prime concern with the invention of the “wheel thingy” is not it’s functional shape but what colour it should be.


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  16. The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but the newspapers. –

    Thomas Jefferson

    Astute chap.

    See also:

    “An editor is one who separates the wheat from the chaff and prints the chaff.” –

    Adlai Stevenson.


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  17. Surely this distortion of our history isn’t true. It’s not happening.
    After all, Australia has had a LNP Federal government since September 2013. Plenty of time to reverse the long march through the institutions.
    If they wanted to.


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  18. The interesting thing is that when kids get a bit older they often are exposed to/investigate the topic again – and they are most indignant when they find out they have been manipulated and/or lied to. It blows right back against the dogma the Marxist “educators” are trying to push into them.


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  19. What a coincidence.
    2 primary school grandsons with me right now, wanting to know about Remembrance Day, WWI and WWII.
    Particularly interested in the speed of planes, snipers, bomb shelters, who had the biggest army, big guns, and sneaky war tactics.
    Bless their inquisitive nature.
    Their family history of service got quite an airing!


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  20. I would happily bet that the same teacher also believes that Aborigines were not even considered human until Sainted Gough of blessed memory made them so, overriding the Flora and Fauna Act.

    * Flora and Fauna Act. More marketing for morons. Like ‘Precautionary Principle’ which simpletons think must be real because the words have many syllables, are unfamiliar but not unknown, and sounds like things such as ‘Uncertainty Principle’ or ‘Newtons Laws’. While ‘Precautionary Principle’ is unfamiliar to them it bears a sort of family resemblance to the other two. Just look at all the nonsensical guff warmies refer to when trying to argue.

    Same with ‘Flora and Fauna Act’. Dullards will think it sounds like legislation because it has the word ‘Act’ and the strange, legal-sounding word ‘Fauna’. ‘Cos every nation needs legislation to classify plants animals. I spent years watering my house hoping it would grow a second story because I mistook it for a plant, and could not even console myself by taking my agapanthus for a walk.

    But here’s the thing. You put in something sort of obscure, or erudite, or arcane, and you can sell it with that. The person who has been let in on the secret (e.g. the word ‘Fauna’) now wants it to be true. They want to be able to talk about it and show off their knowledge, to impress other people, and perhaps persuade even themselves they are clever.

    Marketing for morons.


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  21. Oh Okay. Got it now.

    Their service is honourable, and not completely insignificant, but it shouldn’t be the focus when teaching the basics of the conflict, and Australia’s part in it.



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  22. Modules might be in,y five hours total teaching, but if you spend half of it talking an out indigenous let’s
    Ect Ives and sustainability polemics, there isn’t much room for what went on, or how good you are at planing.


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  23. I wonder what his teacher might say about the fact that my son’s father fought in three different theatres of war, and is no longer allowed to enter a cafe, pub, restaurant, school, stadium…or attend his graduation. I bet there’d be some choice perspective around that!

    Yep, thats me too (Timor, Iraq, Afghanistan), and I have now had my 32 year Medical Career cancelled as well. Ironically, it was what I saw in the last 2 theatres that gave me advance warning on just how evil and oppressive governments are – all governments, even the cuddly democracies like NZ – and gave me time to prepare for what is happening now.

    All that is left is my 25 years in the SA Country Fire Service, which will probably go soon too, if SA follows Diktator Dans edict about vaccination (sic) of volunteer emergency ‘workers’.


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  24. JCsays:
    November 12, 2021 at 6:14 am
    Okay. What I meant was that it’s actual nonsense aboriginals played a big part in WW1. It’s just not true, right? I’m asking because I thought I may have missed something in my history.

    The enlistment standard in WW I required substantially European background.

    Recruiting sergeants, however, took a more relaxed view of that than politicians did, and many aborigines. Photos make it clear that not only were many very obviously aboriginal men accepted, so too were many of Asian-European descent, and of German descent.

    As a simple example, in the 47th (Queensland) Battalion, the first man killed was an aboriginal, Billy Esdale, and the last was William Zornig, only one generation away from Germany. In between, Caleb Shang, of Chinese-Australian descent, was twice awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal (the second highest decoration available to an Other Rank) as well as the Military Medal. He received a civic reception when he returned to Cairns after the War.

    Multiculturalism as a fashion is soooo recent compared to reality.


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  25. Tintarella di Lunasays:
    November 12, 2021 at 6:38 am
    Perhaps Mater you could make calli’s point:

    Difficult to gauge because there was no “Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander” box to tick on the enlistment forms

    Perhaps the teacher needs to know that the people enlisted as Australians – perhaps race didn’t matter so much back then.

    To be fair to aboriginal enlistees, they were not supposed to be accepted, but recruiting sergeants had a different perspective to politicians and bureaucrats.


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  26. Mater, this column of responses should make very interesting reading for your son. I hope it is suggested to him that many many of the other things he is being taught at school also have alternative points of view and missing facts, things like climate change for example, and that becoming educated lasts a lifetime. Lucky lad to start the journey while young.


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  27. I would happily bet that the same teacher also believes that Aborigines were not even considered human until Sainted Gough of blessed memory made them so, overriding the Flora and Fauna Act.

    Referring to my old school, not where I am now…
    This keeps getting trotted out every NAidoc/apology day, always by a different Deputy, or even the Boss. I have made myself unpopular by emailing the ABC fact check every single time I hear it.

    Last year the HT indig sent an all hands email on this as being the reason for the 67 referendum, so I did a reply all that included the fact check, and the real reason for the referendum. I was as popular as a fart in church and had the indig staff stare daggers at me and not return my greetings for months.


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  28. @ Diogenes:

    “when I pointed out the “these rights don’t apply when …” clauses in the Qld Human Rights Act.”

    Any “right” that can be treated like this is NOT, I repeat NOT a “right”.

    It is a temporary, conditional PRIVILEGE granted on a whim (or as part of a political ploy), and thus can be equally “ungranted” by the usual mendacious sociopaths and totalitarians.

    A sort-of 21st Century “Divine “Right” of kings”.

    ““Did you really think we want those laws observed?” said Dr. Ferris. “We want them to be broken. You’d better get it straight that it’s not a bunch of boy scouts you’re up against… We’re after power and we mean it… There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Who wants a nation of law-abiding citizens? What’s there in that for anyone? But just pass the kind of laws that can neither be observed nor enforced or objectively interpreted – and you create a nation of law-breakers – and then you cash in on guilt. Now that’s the system, Mr. Reardon, that’s the game, and once you understand it, you’ll be much easier to deal with.”

    Ayn Rand; “Atlas Shrugged”.

    Get with the programme!


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  29. I was as popular as a fart in church and had the indig staff stare daggers at me and not return my greetings for months.

    You denied them the easy virtue of dumping on their forebears.

    What miserable people who have to imagine their parents, grand parents, great grand parents etc were monsters just so they can feel they are good. They can’t actually do much good (how can they when all the ‘right’ answers have to be given to them pre-packaged by the progressive establishment) but at least they can claim to be better than their ancestors were.


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  30. My grandfather fought at paschendale with the HLI. He was wounded twice in the war and eventually died of a machine gun bullet lodged in his heart. But he got to 60. Amazing. My great grand parents were farm labourers and my gg grandmother was a ” pirn winder” . My gg grandfather was also a farm lad. They lived in kirkmichael in Ayrshire. Yes of course they had dollops of “white privilege” . I can see it in the grainy pictures. I can see it in my grandfathers ww1 medals. I can see it in his joining up again in ww2 as part of the home guard. You can’t buy this sort of privilege.
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  31. The grievance industry and the woke wussies have a lot to answer for.

    Personally, I prefer a more, ummm, humerous approach, as per my one-time mate Nigel (who is Aboriginal and a builders labourer).

    When presented with a drunk guy at the pub offering the well worn “You know why the palms of your hands and the soles of your feet are white?” “joke”, Nigel’s response was a classic.

    Please put down all beverages, and ensure you mouth is empty… done? Good.

    Nigel said “Yeah, and you know why your arse is black? That’s where we fucked you before the paint dried!”

    Owned.
    Classic and classy. He could easily have punched this guy into next week, but instead merely returned the favour.
    Completely turned it around, and was funny as hell. THAT’S what we need more of!
    We don’t need less offense, we need more – much, much more, and of this style.
    Nigel’s reposte, “Wogs out of work”, “Fat Pizza” – peas in a pod, and disarms the intended attack. Brilliant.


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  32. People I know are so impressed that indigenous elders can predict changes in weather by noticing the flight of birds or track animals by their prints. Not saying these are not skills, but they are skills that anyone who spends time in the bush and needs to survive, can learn. They believe that these skills are somehow inherited by birth and as long as you can prove indigenous ancestry you can lay claim to these skills. They get very annoyed with me when I suggest the knowledge to prepare meals and navigate the complexity and wonder of a modern kitchen should be equally admired.


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  33. Boambee John:

    William Edward (Billy) Sing, DCM (3 March 1886 – 19 May 1943)

    Officially 150 confirmed kills at Gallipoli. Anecdotal battlefield lore is that the score was possibly double that.

    LOTS of very German-sounding names on Australian WW1 War Graves in Europe.

    Just as interestingly, plenty of WW1 German and Austrian markers with “Jewish”, Polish and even Russian names on them

    Japanese names on WW2 US war graves, especially in the Italian campaign. See also Navajo Indian names posted across the WW2 South-West Pacific theatre.

    As the old saying goes;

    “You may not be interested in War, but War might just be interested in YOU!”


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  34. Bruce

    Se also Harry Freame, son of an Anglo man and a Japanese woman. Famous for his scouting exploits at Gallipoli. Like Sing, he was also awarded a DCM. Ironically, in 1945 his son was killed by Japanese soldiers on Tarakan island.


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  35. From calli’s link.

    When Aboriginal soldiers returned from both wars, they continued to face racism and discrimination. They were denied citizenship and were not even counted as human in the census until 1971.



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  36. The silver lining is that by the time the kids graduate they’re thoroughly sick of this propaganda.

    Cite you the school that showed the film “Rabbit Proof Fence” so many times, that the children, several of which had families living on the Rabbit Proof Fence at the time that film was set, just lost all interest.


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