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Voicing hope for harmony


Voicing hope for harmony

Ashley Robinson is in two minds about the Indigenous Voice to parliament vote, but does he understand it – well, yes and no.

The Voice date has been set. It has been a long, rocky and winding road and we aren’t there yet. Now I am going to give you a personal view of what I think about it all. But to be honest, I don’t really know what I think.

At the start, I was 100 per cent in favour, but currently I am confused and don’t really understand it.

Firstly, some background on where I am coming from. In 1984 – the day of my Dad’s funeral – my Mother decided to tell me she was adopted, so my English grandparents (long deceased) were not my biological relatives.

For 28 years following that conversation, I tried to track my real bloodlines but my dear Mum didn’t want to help me and said I could do it after she passed away. Mum was born in 1922 in Royal Brisbane Hospital, right in the middle of the Stolen Generation, and I had to wonder. But I waited until she passed and then got a DNA test, as I was pretty sure it would be the answer.

Now, just to be clear, I did this just so I would know and for no other reason. As I said, I was pretty positive it would come back with an Indigenous link. As usual, I was wrong: it was a fair chunk of Anglo Saxon, but also Asian/Russian/Mongolian – which all makes sense when you look at me. I must say, I was a little disappointed, as I really thought I had the answer. It wasn’t to be, but I have always been interested in the Indigenous culture.

I have always thought our country’s flag and national anthem should honour our Indigenous heritage and what better time to change this than now. It would have been nice if it was included in the referendum that is being thrust upon us. But, sadly, no.

So there is no conclusion to this particular column. I have no answers. I don’t really have any questions. I just am a little sad that the further this debate goes, the divide between ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ seems to get bigger.

I will probably still vote ‘Yes’, with the hope that decent human behaviour and ethics will prevail to improve what both sides don’t like about the current proposal and to eventually get something that works for all of us. But of course, that would mean both sides of politics working together.


Ashley Robinson is the manager of Alex Surf Club and the chairman of the Sunshine Coast Falcons.

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