NATIONAL: Australia has a racist past? Heavens forbid, no! WHich doesn’t quite explain this classic piece from 1984.
It’s from a documentary entitled Couldn’t be fairer. From the Wikipedia entry on the film: “Couldn’t Be Fairer is a 1984 Australian documentary film directed by Dennis O’Rourke, which paints a disturbing portrait of Aboriginal life in Queensland, Australia in the 1980s.
“The title is from a 1983 statement regarding aboriginal people by then Premier of Queensland, Joh Bjelke-Petersen: ‘We treat them the same as everyone else – couldn’t be fairer.’
“Aboriginal activist Mick Miller narrates and features in the film, which reveals how native Australian people are still suffering from social oppression and alcoholism. Aboriginal land rights are a central theme: Miller clearly demonstrates the contrast between modern civilization, which values land only as a resource to mined, grazed and developed, and traditional people who regard their land as sacred. Archival footage compares the original lifestyle of Australian aborigines to their current pitiful condition, and shows how European settlers attempted to “civilize” mixed blood children by taking them away from their parents and enrolling them in boarding schools.
“The film ends on an optimistic note, with Miller introducing the audience to a cattle station in northern Queensland called Delta Downs, which is owned and successfully run by aboriginal people. Miller asserts that if the government would give sovereignty of the reserves back to the aboriginal people, they would be able to show the world what they are capable of achieving.