Anthony Albanese’s idea to “fix” January 26 is another nail in the communal coffin of Aussie politicians’ dumbassery surrounding the date.
January 26 represents a day of mourning for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their allies, marking the beginning of the mistreatment and genocide of Australia’s Indigenous peoples by British colonialists.
In a Tweet posted on January 26 (a.k.a. Invasion Day), Labor Party leader Anthony Albanese suggested holding a referendum on the day, arguing that it would be a “unifying moment” for Australia. Twitter, like us, has exploded into what can only be summarised as a huge, collective WTF?
“One of the things that I proposed now three years ago on Australia Day in 2018 was the idea that we could do, perhaps, is to consider having the date for the constitutional recognition of First Australians, have that referendum on January 26,” he said. Considering his own party didn’t support this idea in 2019, you’d think any rational person would stop and consider whether the idea actually had any merit, let alone pitching it again to the same audience.
A referendum on constitutional recognition for First Australians being held on 26 January would be a unifying moment for our nation https://t.co/gY4ER2m6lr
— Anthony Albanese (@AlboMP) January 26, 2021
The recognition of Indigenous people – whose sovereignty was never ceded – shouldn’t even be up for debate, Albo.
Almost as good as a marriage plebiscite was for the gays. Whose side are you on Albro?
— stereogamous (@stereogamous) January 26, 2021
You forcefully take my house you kill and rape my family you lock my kids away for generations you deny us basic human existence and you come to us and want us to celebrate what you done to us
— Deadlyjackflash (@deadlyjackflash) January 26, 2021
In 2021, 26 January was marked with a slew of Invasion Day protests – all of which were peaceful and powerful showings of solidarity with the Indigenous community.
Always was, always will be. #changethedate