Germaine Greer swooped into town a few weeks ago with a little red book entitled Rage where she explores the idea that maybe Aboriginals are not hanging themselves because they’re sad. They are dying because they are furious.
Greer says it’s not the grief that kills you. You can live with grief and people do — it’s the rage that slowly does you in.
It was like she lit a match and stuck it under “Sorry Day”. What a radical idea that the Aboriginals might be angry after generations of abuse. We loved to think of our open heartedness on Sorry Day. We liked to imagine that we had wept away the pain. It’s a much more confronting proposition to have to face their rage.
She turned up on every television talk show and started a conversation that I couldn’t stop thinking about. So I went into Borders to buy the book.
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I asked the guy behind the counter where the book was.
He said, “It’s over there, but don’t buy it, it’s sh-t.”
I said, “What do you mean?”
“How dare she come over from England and tell us how we treat the Aboriginals,” he said.
“Why shouldn’t she? Nobody has the guts to do it from the inside,” I said.
“I am Aboriginal and I agree with Noel Pearson,” he said.
“Aboriginals should start taking personal responsibility. What does that old white bitch know?”
It was the “old white bitch” that lit my fuse. He might have been Aboriginal but he didn’t look Aboriginal. He looked young, white, middle class and gay, in a town where to be young, white, middle class and gay is to be Queen Bee. I wanted to bop him over the head with my book of Rage.
Don’t go telling me about “taking responsibility”you little prick. She might be an “old white bitch”, but you’re a vile aspirational. And I didn’t ask you what you thought — just sell me the f-cking book. By the time I left Borders book shop I was steaming. That guy wasn’t black. He was an Oreo. I was blacker than him. It made me think …
We’ve got stop talking about identity politics and we’ve got to start talking about class again. But we need a new language to describe it. Now that our “working class” is aspirational and the rest of the rabble is just multi-coloured trash who are all told to smile as they’re forced to eat sh-t. Who speaks for them?
Identity politics creates a facade of equal opportunity. Look we can have black presidents, gay talk show hosts, pregnant men, the world is an oyster for the focused aspirational. Keep smiling and your dream can come true. There are no longer any excuses for your lazy fat black ass. Oprah did it! So can you!
Ellen, the lovely lesbian from lala land is Portia Proof that positivity works. Lets face it, Ellen’s not that funny, but that didn’t stop her from becoming a comic and making lots of money. Ellen rescued Portia on her labia shaped white charger and promised a lifetime of exposure in their television castle. Ellen wore the suit, Portia, the tulle. The wedding was all white, like Apple Mac meets Barbara Cartland.
This week the Rudd Government announced that Aboriginals who do not force their kids to go to school will have their welfare cheques cut. What will be the outcome of this policy? More child abuse. And then another intervention. And the cycle will continue because we haven’t learnt a thing.
The Liberal Party couldn’t oppose it because they had their policies stolen from under them, but what they did is take it one step further. Brendan Nelson almost looked like the good guy when he said that the policy should be extended to all welfare recipients. You see we don’t really hate them because they’re black. We hate them because they’re poor.
Aboriginals are on the front line of the war against the poor. They are the warriors and the martyrs. When the whip cracks, it cracks on them first. It makes the poor white trash feel superior for a minute, until they work out that they’re next. And by that stage everyone is so divided who cares?
Aboriginal communities are a type of social laboratory for our globalised social policy. Let’s quarantine their welfare payments, let’s cut their pin money if the kids don’t turn up to school. Let’s neglect and punish them to the point that they are turning on each other. And when they are curled up on the ground, winded from another punch in the belly lets tell them to “take responsibility”.