Ask us anything: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

Ask us anything:  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

How good are you at throwing a boomerang? Such a stereotypical question! when was the last time you encountered casual racism? every bloody Uber… ‘where you from?’ and I’m just like: ‘I’m Aboriginal’ and they’re like:
‘but you don’t look Aboriginal.’ and then I’m like ‘well you didn’t look
racist till you said that!’ and they’re like: ‘okay sorry, I’m just gonna drive.’ Why is dancing so important in Indigenous ceremonies? What happens if you’re a bad dancer? Wouldn’t know. Dancing is about telling our stories and also
passing on our history so it’s very important that as a young person you learn those dances coming through into adulthood and once you learn them you know them for life. There’s no such thing as a bad dancer. Indigenous ceremonial dance is about the ceremony it’s not a performance so you’re not
trying to look good for anyone, you’re participating in sacred ceremony so it’s not
about being good or bad, there’s no such thing Yeah, you’re doing it to honour the old people
your mob, yourself, your family. It’s not really about being a bad dancer. Are you a good dancer?
No, I’m not a good dancer. Is it ever okay to ask someone how Aboriginal they are? I get this all the time. Short answer is no. Can I just answer it flatly straight no, it’s never okay to ask somebody how Aboriginal they are. It’s quite, it’s very offensive to ask that question. If you look at our history there’s a reason why
people aren’t 100% Aboriginal and that’s really heart-breaking. it doesn’t matter the colour of your skin,
or anything like that I guess that’s another stereotype, you have to be black, like dark, to be Aboriginal. and people don’t realise that we lose our skin colour in each generation and things like that so that’s probably one of the ones we cop all of the time, ‘how black are you?’ You don’t ask somebody how much Anglo-Saxon they are, or how much Irish or how much Welsh it doesn’t even come into consideration. I think there’s a lot of people at the University
who have asked me that and, yeah I think they just think it’s okay,
because it’s a matter of curiosity Absolutely a matter of curiosity and I understand that as well, but to answer this question, no. I think it opens up to you having to
justify yourself and justify how much you are or how much you feel, it’s just kind of taking away from who you really are and your identity. If somebody said to you ‘I’m of Aboriginal heritage’
pretty much it should be expected that you just accept that statement. It’s like the coffee, you know, you have your long blacks, you have your flat whites whatever it’s put as much milk in as you
want, but it’s still that coffee. How good are you at throwing a boomerang? How good are you?
Crap. Pretty bad. I won’t even try.
I can’t throw anything, let alone a boomerang. It’s such an art skill. Such a stereotypical question! one time I threw it and it came back
and hit me in the head so not that great. And you’ve got to
think about it, they were used as a hunting tool basically to cause an
injury to a lower limb of an animal so we actually don’t have that much of a
purpose for them anymore. What do you think about the
commercialisation of boomerangs though anyone can buy one and throw it. Sorry… I can’t walk into an antique store and see 65,000 identical factory-made boomerangs
I just, I think that’s incredibly wrong. What is one stereotype that needs to stop? That’s hard, there’s more than one. There’s plenty, petrol sniffing, all blackfellas
on the dole, yeah the list goes on. We get stereotypes all the time. I hear
it every day, we had one just yesterday ‘you get free stuff from the
government.’ I wish they paid my university degree, I still wouldn’t have a HECS debt,
and I wish they gave me a car like people think we get cars or free home
loans, it keeps going on and on. All Indigenous people are drunks and that
they, you know, live in the bush and they don’t know how to live and they can’t
live in houses. We sleep in parks. Like, I sleep in a house. I’ve never lived out bush. The only time I’m sleeping outside is when I’m going bush, going camping and everything. That’s about it. I think one of the biggest stereotypes, I agree is that Indigenous people are the lower-rank in society. Indigenous people can be successful
businessmen, academics, anything that they want to be and I think it’s very
important for people to recognise that and to understand that Indigenous
people will never just fit into one box like we make up 3% of the population and
we come from all walks of life and you’ll never meet two Indigenous people
who are the same and who have the same sort of mixes of cultural and Western
life, it’s just never gonna happen. What do you do on 26 of January? Yabun Festival. Yabun Festival. Yabun. Yabun. Yabun means to make music with a beat. Every year I go to that. You know that everyone’s gonna be there,
it’s a gathering spot. But I also go to community and have a yarn
with the mob at Redfern they do a protest march, I don’t really do those protests much these days, but it’s still good to talk to the elders about what
they’ve gone through and why they’re doing that march, and I think it educates
people as well about what the day means. Like people think 26 January has always been Australia Day – the first Australia Day was in July so it’s crazy that we can’t change that date. And it still brings a lot of sorrow to our
people and I think it’s something that’s got to be done, something has gotta change. Obviously, I don’t celebrate this date. I think it’s incredibly wrong to celebrate on this date. I will sit at home watching TV. I mean yeah,
it’s nothing new, you know? You’ll remember what happened, being Aboriginal and everything you think back on things like
that and just process it through your mind. People who march, it’s awesome and it’s great that they’re willing to stand up
for what they think should be changed and they can, they’re happy to show their
support that way I don’t march because I don’t feel like
I should be there but I come to the after thing so that I can support that
way and be seen around. I had quite a few debates with my friends
about this this year, actually. I don’t do anything. I haven’t really been to many protests because I don’t think that violence or
yelling is the way to resolve things but at the same time I’m not going to go out
and celebrate. But we should change the date.
100%. Is it the Dreaming or Dreamtime? Do all Aboriginal people believe in the same thing?
And what’s the deal with the snake? what’s the deal with Kinyaha? Our ancestors, we say, exist in the Dreaming but these are our Dreamtime stories. The snake collectively in history is the oldest known religious relic.
Cultures all around the world have a connection to a creation serpent, which is what the
Rainbow Serpent is for us slithering through the land creating the
land masses and rivers No, not all Indigenous people maintain the same beliefs, there are a lot of Christian Indigenous people, Agnostic, Catholic, Buddhists, my
family’s Catholic, and that just happens when you’re living in such a
multicultural country. What’s the one thing about Indigenous people or culture that others can’t seem to understand? One, I can’t pick one. I could say a lot about this one. Well, there’s a lot that people don’t understand,
that’s why we’re here. I think the most annoying thing for
me is the ‘what percentage are you?’ question. If there’s anything I could
ask people to stop asking, it’s that. Friends of mine always talk to me, and
I’ve grown up very middle-class, white Australian So from 10 years old I went to a school where I was the only Indigenous child and I went right
through high school, and even now as an older person a big thing that my friends
ask me is like ‘why don’t we know about these Indigenous things, these
Aboriginal stories?’ or ‘why aren’t they shared’ or ‘why aren’t things marked?’ and it’s pretty much, you know, because there’s stories in our lives that we don’t have
to share, because they’re our own stories and it makes the story a little more
watered down once we share it with people because then people share it on,
and changes its meaning. Our connection to the land. We don’t own any land, which a lot of people misunderstand we’re with the land, we’re one with the land,
there’s no ownership in our old ways. Yeah and with that, you get so attached to it, you know like I come from footy circles and everyone
blows up every now and then because certain people get home sick and want
to go home, and they don’t understand it but uh, it’s incredibly hard to be
taken off the land. As an example from where I’m from, there’s a particular type of fish that you can peel its stomach out and splay it open and it shows the
root system that that fish’s eggs were actually laid on which then has
implanted into that animal’s lining of its gut. That is the type of connection
and strength that our people have for the natural environment and that’s what
I feel like mining companies and these big entities that want to pillage the
land for their own benefit aren’t really understanding, and Indigenous people
around the globe and particularly in Canada as well, have that understanding
that we need to think forward for those next generations, it’s not about our needs or our children’s needs, we’ve got to think beyond that. Our culture’s the oldest living one in the world, I mean and people don’t understand how long we’ve been on this earth, how our stories were told in the past, what happened to us as well,
our culture, we’ve got no language back home where I’m from, it’s only two
hours north of here and there’s no language. And I know that myself and other people
in the community are actually trying to bring that back, and trying to bring our
language back. If you look at the language map, you’ve probably all seen
that, you’ll see that out of that there’s not many that are still active. Not sure if you guys speak traditional language up there or anything? My mother’s country is Palm Island,
so that was one of the main settlements and everything, where they sent everybody as punishment you know, and since then culture’s been lost. I’m so inspired by the strength and resilience
of such a people and that’s one thing I would love for all of Australia
to be able to see how incredible and rich this culture is. How do Indigenous relatives work? Why is everyone a cousin, auntie or uncle?
Cause we love each other. You’re an auntie to me. That’s right, exactly, and she has been
asked many times ‘is she really your auntie?’ Because we don’t look alike at all. It’s a complex system but basically we’re all family. With Indigenous culture as well, it’s not believed that your birth mother can give you
all the vital tools you need for your entire life I mean it’s not true, so you
have kind of like an array, all your aunties are your mothers as you have this
collective of leaders in your life you really are equipped for the array of
things that you do experience throughout your life. As soon as she met me she said to me
‘can I call you auntie?’ and I said ‘course you can!’ I felt so respected
that the students call me that and I know that they can come to me and ask me
anything and you know it’s not just school work-related, it’s family or
whatever you know everything like that so it’s such a nice thing for me to have
that respect from the students. She definitely earns it. To me, calling someone my auntie or uncle,
they don’t even have to be like, you know, Indigenous, I’ll
still call her my auntie or uncle out of respect. When was the last time you encountered
casual racism? How do you deal with it? Oh, I get it every day on the bus. I mean Sydney’s full of it if you’re, yeah,
if you’re Indigenous. And if you don’t think it is you joking yourself. We cop it all the time, I’m pretty thick-skinned,
I’ve copped it all my life. I travel in from the Northern Beaches and
I sit on the bus and I will be the last person that people will sit next to on the bus,
pretty much both ways, that’s an hour trip. I’ve had people who’ve had like a
broken leg, or are on crutches and they’ve decided to stand because they
didn’t want to sit next to me. And it actually makes you feel like shit,
it makes you feel like you are insignificant. Got asked yesterday how Aboriginal I am,
I guess… that still hurts a lot, when people want to question who you are
based on the colour of your skin. Racism in Townsville that is like… that’s hard
being from Townsville, and being my age cause Townsville is like juvenile delinquency,
all that, so if you get seen walking with your like, you know, with a
group of other black people and they they constantly will keep their eye on you,
and just watch your every move and everything and that was actually the last time I
encountered racism too when I was at home so, I dunno,
Sydney’s been good to me. That’s a big one too you know, people you
know ‘you’re at university are you really Aboriginal or are you just there for the
benefits?’ Who is your hero?
Oh, Uncle Max Hands down Uncle Max, here he is, right here,
got his shirt right on now. Love you Uncle Max.
That’s our grandfather and our teacher, our master and he’s taught us pretty much
everything. It’s Goodesy for me, Adam Goodes. He’s so cool. Martin Nakata, he’s the first ever Torres Strait Islander
to get a PhD, he’s a good friend of mine and the leadership he showed, that’s why I’m still working in the higher education sector. I could’ve gone and worked in corporates
and things like that. That’s who my hero is, my nan because she was somebody who from early on in life was really passionate and dedicated to education but because of the laws and policies she actually was denied the right to go to school so
that meant she ended up missing out on quite a lot of formative years of
education and learnt to read off rubbish at the tip, jam jars, sauce bottles, all
that kind of stuff she sort of had an understanding that
she had a role to play in terms of fighting for the rights of our people in
the classroom because we should be entitled to have an education.
I feel like with her in my strides I can actually do anything for my people. What can we do to try and make up for the past? I think education is the most
important thing from everything from Australia Day to casual conversations
that you have with people I think knowing more means that you’ll be able
to approach things better. The main thing is just to, before you try and act
just shut up and listen. Get educated. the only way we can really move forward
in all of this and closing the gap, Reconciliation, whatever,
white Australia needs to understand. Well, first of all, you can stop saying
‘it’s in the past get over it. I wasn’t here it wasn’t my fault.’ You know, you can’t
exonerate yourself from a history when that history still affects the present day. It was not that long ago 30, 40 years ago that
we were still classed as plants and animals and people wonder, like they’re still like
‘get over it’ it’s like, well actually it’s not that easy. It’s quite close in my generations as well,
my dad was stolen so you can’t tell me that’s ancient history if I don’t get to know any of my family or my
grandmother or my cousins, I don’t think it’s fair to hold people accountable for things
that happened so long ago, and it’s not constructive, and I think the best thing to
do moving forward is to just be compassionate and respectful of one another. I think about the education system, and I think about the National Curriculum creating a
space for the teaching of historical incidences which then inform why our
people are the way we are today but again it has to be designed and
delivered in a way that is inclusive that’s not a blame and shame game
because we know that that’s not worked in the past and it’s obviously not going
to float in the future. I think it’s just being part of our journey, acknowledging the past, we can’t change what happened but there’s a lot of people out there
who try and say ‘oh, it’s the best thing–’ I heard someone say the other day it’s great for people to be taken from their families like if that was on their fort, would they like that like? Being taken from your white family cause you’re white. Yeah there was a thing on Sunrise about that and the lady actually like made the
suggestion to have a second Stolen Genration I was like looking at her like ‘what the?!’ I hear that all the time ‘but I’m not racist’ when they make
these kinds of comments. We’re still human. And people don’t want to talk to us sometimes cause were different but we’re the same as everyone else. It’s like we come from another planet or something. Just have a yarn with us. We’re not gonna bite. What obstacles stand between
Indigenous kids and higher education? Well, a lot. Getting the big questions. Gosh, where do I start? White privilege. There’s still a little bit of like those
students will go to school and they’re not given enough information about the
services that are provided within universities or even that government
provides for them at school to do better. The further out you go into the more remote places the harder it gets, the less resources that are dedicated, the less time given. They’re forgotten. This varies for a lot of Indigenous kids but it comes down to varying degrees of prejudice. If no one believes that you’re going to be there then you’re not going to be there and you’re just going to fall under what
everyone expects of you. Letting go of home to get an education and you know, like just get out of your comfort zone and leave behind your Indigenous, your cultural world. I think it is, it is a confidence issue unlike a
lot of other families most Indigenous families don’t have anyone who’s got a
tertiary education, it’s quite common and it makes it difficult to break into a
world that you have no idea about and when there’s no support services made
available to you it makes it ten times harder. I was involved in the AIM program
which has high school students Indigenous high school students and we
bring them all in and we discuss Indigenous success and I think that’s
such an important aspect in supporting Indigenous kids in entering into
tertiary education because for a lot of them they just don’t think about it and
they have a lot of sports role models but I think having programs where you
have academic role models in the Indigenous circle is very important. What’s the best part of being Indigenous? This just just reminded me of [singing] “there’s nothing I would rather be, than to be an Aborigine.” [Singing] “And won’t you take my precious land away.” I’ve said it a thousand times–
Say it again, say it loud! I think one of the main reasons is the mob I’ve met,
you and all my sisters and my aunties. Everything’s great. I guess being connected to culture and we have, we’re lucky enough to have
great teachers and we’re lucky enough to be in a mob that is still very strong
culturally and still practices ceremony and to be part of that is, it’s like nothing else,
that’d have to be the best part of being alive. To hear the land talk to you, to see the ancientness, it’s very, very special, it’s a privilege.
It’s definitely the best part. So for me it’s at that cellular level,
like every part of me is an Aboriginal woman and I’m proud of my
heritage and I know that the footsteps that I take have been walked by my
ancestors and that they guide me. I’m in education and we’ve got the textbook for
our unit up there and you know they’re written in 2017 and they’re bringing
some stuff into the into pedagogy which we’ve known for sixty thousand years Being black and deadly. and I think we’re pretty black and
deadly ourselves so that’s another good part. My name is Irene Higgins and I’m a
Wiradjuri woman. My name is Mary Waria and I come from
Badu Island in the Torres Strait. I’m Jack Field, I’m a Kaurna and Yuin man. I’m Harry Whitting and I’m a Gamilaroi and Yuin man. I’m Jeremy Heathcoate and I’m from the
Awabakal nation which is near Newcastle. Kiann Walsh from the Bwgcolman and Birri Gubba tribe, far north Queensland. Hi my name’s Simone and I’m a Bundjalung woman. Hi, my name is Bianca Williams and
I’m a Barkindji woman.


  1. Post
    Megan Glacken

    I understand that non indigenous people should not say it wasn't me or its in the past. But I have to walk longer routes and not get on certain buses because of the indigenous people on the street in Cairns. They alway yell and are abusive and tell me to go back to my home country. I understand the land was stolen but I was born here and great full I was.

  2. Post
  3. Post
  4. Post
  5. Post
    Eve Mason

    Wow, the two young ladies sitting together and the two young guys sitting together really understand the problem and the solution! People should listen to them!

  6. Post
    Shamili Kovvuru

    This was so powerful. For 60 years, the government in Australia seperated young aboriginal children from their families, and removed all connection from their culture. 38 years later, they finally received an apology for the Stolen Generation. When I think of families separated at the US border and young children reporting sexual abuse at the hands of US officials, I see history repeating itself. I’m so glad to hear about the cultural revival aboriginal people are going through in rediscovering and cherishing their language and culture

  7. Post
    Sean D

    am i the only white australian that feels a strong connection to the land? i know it’s not the same and Aboriginal people but whenever i’m out of the city i can feel the land running through my veins

  8. Post
  9. Post
    Ty Chambers

    i’m maori and i always get the question about auntie and uncle. people do it out of respect, as if someone were to call a person, ma’am or sir.

  10. Post
  11. Post
    Endless Awakening

    4:09 She has an awesome accent. 🙂 Also I had these same stereotypes, against Indigenous Australians, however I felt it was wrong as my very own people have had similar stereotypes, as well. This lead me to conduct my own research and found my previous opinions to be wrong (obviously) via videos like this. I just feel bad that I ever had these opinions, because I was not bought up this way. These videos seriously help anyone looking for both sides of the story. 🙂

  12. Post
    Brianna Lillian

    If I had a penny for how often I was asked “but what percentage/how aboriginal are you?” To be honest it’s quite confronting and offensive

  13. Post
  14. Post
  15. Post
  16. Post
  17. Post
  18. Post

    Really informative video, hands down. Admittedly, I found myself being confronted by my own biases throughout though. As an Australian with a keen interest in history, I've always been aware of and appalled by the treatment of Indigenous Australians. However, as the grandchild of immigrants arriving in the 1960s, I've never felt that I've deserved the shame that I've felt directed to me as a non-Indigenous Australian. And this is where I have to admit that I find myself getting defensive, just for the fact that I always feel accused despite me doing all I can (being educated regarding Australia's Indigenous history, not being prejudiced). I know it's not right, but it's something that I think needs to be considered when trying to bridge the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. For real reconciliation, we need to know the past, accept it (on both sides) and celebrate the culture together moving forward…

  19. Post
    Bloopy Bloop

    My heritage is both aboriginal (Kaurna people) and Irish/Scottish. I'm fine with being asked how much as I think it's a reasonable question people are just genuinely curious. I'm slightly less than 1/8 aboriginal, as in, my grandmother was actually aboriginal. I'd be interested in doing my genealogy stuff because I'd like to know what European strains run in my blood too. I don't believe in valuing one racial group over another.
    I also don't mind Australia Day, and don't mind whether the date is changed or stays the same.
    I have never been to the parts of the country where there are problems in the aboriginal communities because I was raised in Sydney then Tasmania, but I hope someone comes up with the solutions for those communities very soon! I know some have had good outcomes in some places but it sounds like there is still work to be done.
    Respect to you all! Let's live together in peace.

  20. Post
  21. Post
    Jane Smith

    We were taught so much about this in the 1960s because my uncle and aunt moved out there. They sent us so many lovely books too. Such wonderful original Australians.
    Good luck to them all.
    (I don't agree people don't ask white people how much % they are – many of us are doing genetic test and even before that had lots of conversations about it because it's interesting)

  22. Post
  23. Post

    It's not offensive to ask how aboriginal someone is. I'm part Maori and don't get offended when people ask me how much Maori blood I have in me. It's just curiosity. This world is becoming fucked with political correctness. People will be afraid to say anything soon.

  24. Post
  25. Post
  26. Post
    Bobo TehClown

    Very informative and a worthwhile watch. I get asked how much Irish, French, German, Anglo Saxon, Asian etc. etc. I have in me all the time. I have to say I don't see the issue with this. People are asking your blend to understand your geographical background and heritage. Its not about how black you are or aren't its about what makes you up, you might be 1/4 Indigenous with a blend of French, NZ and Japanese for all I know, but you identify as 100% Indigenous and are embracing that as your cultural heritage, good on you! That's great but don't get angry or upset because of someone asking how much of one thing or another you are. Lets focus on educating people more about the cultural diversities and embracing the Indigenous culture as part of every day Australian life and values. Its a wonderful rich and diverse culture that has a huge amount to offer. As someone that remembers what my family went through across 2 World Wars why shouldn't we be remembering what our hosts in Australia (or America or New Zealand etc.) went through. Its not about trying to right the wrongs, we can't do that, its about making sure it doesn't happen again and showing compassion.

  27. Post
    M D A

    4:59 I’m going to the invasion day protest next year. It’ll be my first one. I wish there was no need to go, because it’s 2019 and the date still hasn’t been changed 🤦‍♂️

  28. Post
    Martin McKowen

    I am white and when I was growing up 26 January was just a day off. It had little or no meaning. It is only recently that it became the nationalist statement that it is.

  29. Post
    Rafael Crespo

    How do we get the balance between keeping curiosity & communication channels open…?
    I’m a proud dungarri man I with a PhD in medicine!!!
    Me: Gets into Uber
    Uber : awkwardly turns music to hip hop .

  30. Post
    Rakesh Mohan

    If you don't look like the race with which you identify then that's just the way it is. I'm of Indian descent, I would've though that the Uber riding woman was Indian but I'm not being racist to wrongly thinking she's of a race that she actually isn't. I mean her no disrespect I just think she looks similar to my race. We're all humans hence we share overlapping superficial characteristics.

  31. Post
    Dijana Djuranovic

    I don’t get how it’s rude to ask “ how aboriginal you are” when someone clearly doesn’t look it and they look mixed.. it’s normal. I’d ask an asian person how asian they are if they didn’t look full Asian.

  32. Post

    You can’t exonerate yourself from a history when that history still effects the present day. Fucking amen.

  33. Post
    Alister Williams

    Is it ok to call you guys ‘Abbos’? Instead of saying the whole word ‘Aboriginal’.
    Just like shortening ‘New Zealander’ to ‘Kiwi’

  34. Post
    Amy Naef

    2:06 "you dont ask people hoe much irish you are"
    Yes. Yes people do. I am often asked if i am Italian (i'm not. There's no Italian in my heritage). Im 8th generation european descent australian (scottish english and swiss) I am also asked daily if I am in treatment or where my cancer is – i have alopecia, not cancer.

    I prefer to see thses questions as education opportunities. If the questions are asked, and answered, it takes away eccuses for ignorance.

  35. Post
  36. Post
  37. Post
    Kristen Smith

    Thank you for this video. Great watch. I really liked the coffee analogy. That is important for people to get.

  38. Post
    lillian reeves

    Aboriginal culture isn’t appreciated enough in Australia and I wish it was more included in schools

  39. Post
    lillian reeves

    Also I agree so much with 26th of January. I have said this to white people before and they said that it doesn’t matter, they want the long weekend so it shouldn’t be changed etc. why not at the very least change it to the day after?? Just change the date to another day that isn’t one that offends aboriginals and their ancestors

  40. Post
  41. Post

    I think it's ridiculous that Chanel sells a boomerang for thousands of dollars. And jeffree star owns it. Nah you can't get a free car but you can get 0% interest.
    It's kinda hard for me, my grandfather was aboriginal, his sisters were dark skinned and he had a more olive tone, but I wasn't raised with the culture, because my dad wasn't raised with the culture, so maybe that means my grandfather/aunts/uncles weren't raised with the culture and that makes me sad. So i feel like it would be right to learn more about it and identify as aboriginal, but kids at school were like no you're not, but then older aboriginals could see it in my brother and I. So if anything it makes me incredibly sad that my family may have not known who they truly were, and I should take steps to find out.

  42. Post

    As a Kiwi (5/8 Irish, the rest mainly English with a 1/16 dash of Maori) I grew up 'white' but Maori people were always there, just people, like us. That may seems racist, to say 'just like us', but when you grow up with inherent racism but you just don't get what the big deal is then that's kinda how you feel. Perplexed, confused, curious towards the reasoning… cause they're just people …like us.

    Since I moved to Australia I've been saddened and shocked and dismayed by the level of racism and ignorant hatred aimed at Aboriginals that makes what I grew up with in the '70s in rural NZ really tame and tolerant by comparison. Didn't help that at the same time I moved here the whole Gay Marriage Referendum thing was going on. As someone coming from a place where homosexuality had been legal for yonks and gay marriage for ages too, I was honestly saying to myself 'wtf backwards [email protected]#*'ing place have I moved to???' Of course it's not that backwards, that was just my wide-eyed freshie perspective, but Australia still has some travelling to do.

    NZ is a massive global experiment in multiculturalism. It's hard to see it when you're in it – not seeing the forest for the trees etc – but now I have a better inside and outside perspective yeah it's pretty bloody obvious. For all the negative aspects of multiculturalism, it's a great way to grow up as long as you're not indoctrinated into racism by adults who themselves were brought up with those beliefs and don't know any different. I guess that's why most Kiwis just don't give a toss about skin colour to the point it's seen as racism by non Kiwis. It's not ignorance, it's a warm 'don't care' attitude that holds no negativity and an overall bro-ceptance whether you're Maori or Tongan or Chinese or Indian. Mostly we just don't care what you are as much as we do care who you are. If I have to describe someone I've seen then there may be a whole slew of words used – tall, short, fat, thin, male, female, tidy, scruffy. Race will be one, but it won't be the primary descriptor. I've also just realised that ethnic names are not used as slurs in NZ in the same way they are in a lot of countries where the racial designation can be used to harass and insult. I suck with words, not sure I said that right. Descriptors like black or abbo (even the fact people use the word and don't capatalise it to make it a double insult). The word Maori isn't used as an insult towards the race. Neither are the Polynesian race names or Asian. I think that comes from a cultural awareness for different peoples that's been drummed into Kiwi kids since the early '80s. We kinda know that, depending on the setting, people from different ethnicities are treated with respect according to their customs, especially the elders, depending on whether they are Pakeha, Maori, Chinese, Tongan, Samoan or whatever. And yeah, black or white, in an informal setting we call the next generation up Aunty and Uncle too whether they are related to us or not and everyone is a cuzzie lol Guys of our own generation are 'bro', women are 'sis'. What we call whanau, Aboriginals call mob. And it just means family… one big spread out far flung forever connected family.

    Since moving here (rural Victoria) I've only met one Aboriginal, and he was probably the most stunningly attractive Australian I've met to date. He had the most incredibly genuine and infectious smile that just made you smile as well. Seriously, he could have smiled and called me the most shitawful names and I would have smiled right along with him and not cared at all lol As it was he was just giving his bosses shit for being 'dumb white fellas having to be shown what to do by the black fella' (not kidding, I think I fell in love on the spot lol) I dearly wish to meet more Aboriginals, they are the people of this land. To me it's simply disrespectful to move here and call it home and not show respect and a thank you courtesy to the lands custodians. I feel it in my heart, it's strong, this need to show my respects as I moved here as a 40-something female on my own, not for work, not for people, but because I fell in love with this bit of land, this area of Victoria. Unlike the other parts of Aussie I've seen so far, this area drew me like a magnet and I need to connect with the people who are from this land, not just those living on it but, to be honest, I don't know how to approach them.

    The horror stories I've been told by white Aussies would have me believe I'll be robbed or raped or bashed and left for dead just for being white and in their spot. I know this is BS but this isn't NZ so I can't just waltz on up with that casualness inherent to Kiwis and say gidday. I don't know the customs, so I don't know how to show respect outside of the general kind. The shit that went down in NZ during the British colonisation is a fair bit further back in time than what went down here. NZ isn't fixed by any stretch of the imagination, but it's better than it was. The wounds here are a lot fresher by at least one or two generations. And that in itself makes it somewhere I want to tread carefully. To my way of thinking, Aboriginals deserve more than just the general kind of respect you'd give a people you know little about. But I do want to get to know and meet some locally but I don't know where to start and yeah, I'm afraid. Cause I am white and I look white but I'm sure as shit not white Australian. Because that is something I don't want to be blanket judged as. It's like I need to arrive holding a placard saying "Kia Ora! Dont shoot! Yeah I'm white …but I'm not a bloody Aussie!".

    And based on the crap I've had heaped on me so far because of my 'softcock' attitude (funny that considering I'm Classic Liberal though the media would label me Far Right) I don't give a fuck how rural white Australia feels about me being an 'abbo sympathiser'. Yes I've been called that, and worse. From where I sit they've got a long ways to go yet and lot to learn.

  43. Post
  44. Post
    joanna gallegos

    So interesting… idk anything about the aboriginal people I liked to know more. I’m from Az and their plight sounds a lot like the Native Americans.

  45. Post
    TBone MC

    Curiosity is how we learn, of things and people. Curiosity can lead to awareness, understanding, friendships, relationships, marriage and family. The silliest question left un-asked disrupts that path as does the silliest of questions left un-answered. No matter how poorly our actions of the past have been even the most unforgiving could agree they have been of good intention. The stolen generation was an amazing success raising children from the stone age but simultaneously robbed them of their affiliation with family, country and culture. The mainstream equivalent is adopted children many of whom were removed due to societal pressures and they end up seeking out their past on the curiosity path. I hope for a future full of good intentions where successes out number failures as an issue for all Australian's above politics. Looking through these comments though division is being created by the minority left and the once First Nation issue supported by all Australians is very quickly being relegated to the whim of a conditional party platform perhaps equivalent to electric cars or coal. I think mainstream Australia have just proven they're sick of being preached to by useful idiots.

  46. Post

    As an American Native….I am amazed at how this is nearly identical to how were are treated right down to the stereotypes.

  47. Post

    People absolutely ask what percent Irish, German, etc. people are. You shouldn't be ashamed of your ethnicity.

  48. Post

    Australia is possibly the most racist county, it's disgusting how some Aussies treat the Australian natives.

  49. Post
    Karma Soldier

    I got only 1(2) question:
    Do you remember your roots and do you still fight for your kinsmens rights?

  50. Post

    I loved the different voices and perspectives. Not everyone thinks the same way because they are aboriginal/indigenous.

  51. Post
    Assassin Zoldyck

    I think that a lot of people don't understand that Aboriginal and Torres Strait people's are completely DIFFERENT. They have different cultures, different customs, and different beliefs. It's like saying Canadians and American's are the same.

  52. Post
  53. Post
    P T

    I really hate it when ethnic minorities play the ‘racist’ card. They can be racist too.

    I do think it’s selfish not to want to pass on your cultural stories just because you’re worried that the masses will change them.

  54. Post
  55. Post
  56. Post
    Akwaaba B

    Excellent video!
    I am of Afrikan ancestry, where I was born they refer to me as Black. If I were to go to australia, would I be referred to as Black there too? where I am from Aboriginal/Indigenous people sometimes refer to themselves as Red.

  57. Post
    Philip Crawford

    I'm Jamaican of mixed heritage and do get classed often . I think the British subjugated their own people before the British Empire was formed that it's imprinted in their culture so much that it has become second nature to have prejudice and classicism they have long forgotten to be just human.

  58. Post
    Anna McCormack

    I don’t really understand the idea that they don’t want their stories ‘watered down’ by being told, I feel like that would help because they want to be understood? I’d love to learn about their stories

  59. Post
    J Gray

    This continent is soo cool and huge! There are soo many completely distinct aborigine races it's amazing. Their number of different languages is really vast like Europe and Asia.

  60. Post
  61. Post
  62. Post
    Saffron Sugar

    I am asked how Black I am pretty frequently. I am biracial and raised by both parents, I don't know if it's possible for me to only claim one side, that would feel like I hated half of myself. If my White blood came from violence and I was only raised by my Black relatives, that would be a completely different story. I would be Black then. As things stand, my parents were happily married until death and I absolutely refuse to discount half of my family. Milky coffee or coffee flavored milk? The fact that I'm part of the oppressed and part oppressor isn't lost on me, but it is the truth. I feel that peace between the two is within me .
    — Natives considered fauna (animals) up until 30 -40 years ago is a myth. It is a misconception about the battle for equal rights and the 1967 Referendum. This occurred over 50 years ago, but did not newly classify Native people as human.

  63. Post

    Sadly, these common stereotypes they share here, are identical to those often heard in America and Canada regarding the native American Indians!

  64. Post
    Ivan Dmitriev

    1:33 IMO the answers that "it's never ok to ask how aboriginal you are" and the retort "you don't look racist either" are basically done in bad faith – it's legitimate to ask both of those questions and ask that someone doesn't look exactly like the majority of the people they claim to be, and it's interesting how people move around – studying personal history should be a class in the compulsory education.

  65. Post
    Ivan Dmitriev

    2:06 Actually, yes you do, you ask people about how much Irish, Welsh, German or whichever other place they are. That's exactly why it's ok to ask that.

  66. Post
    Ivan Dmitriev

    2:58 I'm ok at throwing a boomerang, owing the fact I got one since my birth, after my mom visited Australia in 1977 or maybe 1978

  67. Post
    Ivan Dmitriev

    4:03 A lot of indigenous people are drunks in many countries, owing to the fact that it's the simplest way of suppressing an indigenous population – you can read about the Chukchi war in the Imperial Russia the Eskimo(Inuktitut) war of the Danes/Norse and so on. Alcohol is a universal social engineering tool.

  68. Post
    Ivan Dmitriev

    10:50 That's fun, you use "auntie/uncle" the Cantonese or like the Central Asians (Kazakhs, Uzbeks, Kirghiz, Turkmen)

  69. Post
    Ivan Dmitriev

    17:44 "The more remotely you go the less resources and time there is given/allocated for the studies of the children" That is a universal problem of large territories – from Canada to Norway to Russia, to Finland, to China, to Australia, which might be later revealed an advantage – the modern standardized educational system is good at making rank and file employees, something that is not needed in the face of automation, on the other hand the individualized system of nomad schooling (look up those in Yakutia and Mongolia) has more single time of student vs teacher, which is conductive to actually finding out what is the unique talent of the student.

    Australia probably needs to have something different, as the climate is more stable-hot rather than the cold climates of Yakutia and Mongolia, but adapted to the individual learning.

    As a person who came from a small town, I would never exchange my small-town school for a larger area or a metropolis. There is simply – not enough free time of the student and not enough communication time that I could have with the teachers, alone, in their homes.

  70. Post
    Li Bay

    We need to Educate, Enlighten and move together in a peaceful and respectful manner. I encounter racism every day it's intrusive, demeaning and unnecessary. You treat people the way you want to be treated simply put you give respect you will get respect.

  71. Post

    I’m a Pacific Islander that lives in Australia I wish I had a Aboriginal friend because they remind me so much of my own people. It’s just disgusting how Aboriginal people are treated by European people. Thanks for allowing us immigrants live in your country xx

  72. Post
    c c

    I also think a lot of problems have to also do with Sydneys class system and large white population. a lot of states down south I find have quite prominent class systems, especially Sydney and perceive aboriginals on the lower end. where as in the NT there is no class system at ALL, they're equal with whites and with everyone else. I think it also has to do with our such diverse population and huge aboriginal population which doesn't make them a minority like they would be in Sydney

  73. Post
  74. Post
    Aymii keegan

    Reading some of these comments makes me see .. some just don’t get it .. the colour of my skin does not change who my father is or his mother .. or either of her parents .. the assimilation policy was a real fact handed down by the commonwealth to make aboriginal people look like me .. my eyes maybe green but my feet dance like I was taught and bunjil still looks over me the same … and Waa still gives messages .. when u lot get over the fact of “colour” u may see the original caretakers of this land .. that always was and always will be … not any coincidence Australia is home to a huge variety of flora and fauna .. yes my father was born as flora and fauna ( thanks commonwealth) but we connected to this land from hearts and bloodlines .. not skin shades .. grow up !! This is 2019 !!

  75. Post

    To the lady whose answer to the why don't others know about Aboriginal stories and stuff was because we don't have to share them because they're our . Nobody is saying that you all have to share everything and it's well within your right to not do so but you not sharing is a part of the reason that when most people outside of your culture and country think of Aboriginals people that look like you are the face of it instead of the diversity shown here.

  76. Post
  77. Post
    Theresa Dunne

    I'm Irish and although the Irish have very strong kinship and respect for older people we don't call them auntie or uncle unless they are a blood relative.

  78. Post
  79. Post
  80. Post

    Absolutely loved this video ♥️ It made me realise how much knowledge I’ve missed out on when it comes to indigenous culture and issues. Definitely need to educate myself.

  81. Post

    I’m Not aborigines but my people know the struggle as well! stereotypes are hurtful. So glad to have seen this video😊

  82. Post
    Haley Guthrie

    What the shit?? Its like England had a step by step formulary of destruction of Natives and then taking over the country???? Haha I'm native American and feel your pain! Even down to a Holiday trying to force assimilation, Thanksgiving

  83. Post
  84. Post
    ada deh

    Questions I want to ask: Yl

    You said you're a proud aborigine, do you fluently speak aboriginal language? Do you still believe in the traditional aboriginal faith? If not, why?

  85. Post
    Jose Rhode Island

    Loved this video! I have always been fascinated about Australian Aborigines. The extremely sarcastic thick young lady in the blue shirt was so annoying 😂

  86. Post
    Carlos Velasquez

    To me the word "Aboriginal" is degratory , Native is the right word. Aboriginal sounds like less than a regular human being

  87. Post
    Central Republic of Sahul

    You can have bad dancers in Torres Strait ones due to it being too technical and structured for first time learners. Aboriginal dancing is more free flowing and unrestricted.

  88. Post
  89. Post
    Wesley Jean-Pierre

    BOY Black people the same everywhere. ALL my Black Americans and Carribean people reading this KNOWS we refer to EVERYBODY (we adore) as our cousins, aunties, and uncles. Beautiful people, love from New York and with roots in Haiti (Ayiti)

  90. Post
    DCW 87

    As for throwing a boomerang. I used to use one as a kid when when we went looking for roo's and pigs. I even made one, but was better at setting traps, spears, and was alot better at shooting a gun.

  91. Post
    DCW 87

    I think the better thing is just stop bringing it up. Black and white was always a problem, but was becoming less and less, until someone decides to bring it up again.

  92. Post
  93. Post

    But…how do one decide if one is "aboriginal" or not, say, if you've just a couple of aboriginal forefathers, a great great great great great great uncle here, and a great great great great great great aunti there. Where do you draw a line, if there is any? If a dna test showed 0,002 % aboriginal origin? How about 0,2%? Or should one look at one's cultural upbringing instead? This stuff is interesting from social and biological perspectives. Many take dna tests these days, and it's interesting to see how people identify and label themselves, and we all know genetics is a vastly complicated issue!!!

  94. Post
    Fletcher Hamilton

    "Ask us anything"? How about, Why are you so maddened and "triggered" by innocuous and convivial questions probably just intended as friendly ice-breaking? "Ask us Anything"?? More like, "Don't Bother Talking To Us!"! Which I won't. Thanks, University of Sydney!

  95. Post
  96. Post
  97. Post
    Freya Black

    Change the date to the 25th, to celebrate Aboriginal people were living in peace before the white settlers. It wouldn't cause any of the inconvenience with holiday times or driving to relatives because it's literally the day before.

  98. Post
    Argad Argad

    I am new to Australia, hence I am not familiar with aboriginal Australians.

    What is the systamic racism occurring to you.

    For me it seems AA suffer systematic racism, and the gov covers with some facade about how they like and appreciate AAs

  99. Post
  100. Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *