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McQuire, Amy: 200 years of trauma through a CCTV lens (Don Dale and after)

McQuire, Amy

200 years of trauma through a CCTV lens‘, New Matilda, 3 August 2016

The best piece that we have seen on this issue. Darumbul journalist, Amy McQuire, looks behind the Royal Commission kneejerk reaction.

Aboriginal affairs moves at a glacial pace – and the vast majority of problems are always under the surface. The mainstream media only sees what is easily visible to them, the clichéd tip of the iceberg.

Four Corners exposed things that are normally below the mainstream’s radar.

The pain of our people, built upon 200 years of trauma, bleeding through each generation, compounding and reproducing in complex ways, suddenly culminated in the CCTV images that slowed a nation down until you could hear the pulsing, hidden heartbeat of Aboriginal Australia.

McQuire lists ‘disgusting, disgraceful, genocidal policies and positions’ evident in various jurisdictions.  None of them led to white outrage like that now occurring. But the Royal Commission initiative is curbing this outrage.

There is a feeling among our mob that the Royal Commission was a convenient way for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to be seen to be doing something, without actually doing it. This cynicism is well founded in history.

McQuire looks at similar exercises in the past, like the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody and concludes that ‘a Royal Commission seems ultimately about placating white outrage, rather than actually providing justice for blackfellas’.

Other material on Northern Territory Indigenous incarceration issues and the aftermath.

David Stephens