Stolen Generation Apology

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Some people dismiss the Apology to the Stolen Generations as a symbolic gesture saying that inequality of the life experience of Indigenous Australians needs to be addressed with practical policy measures. Discuss the concept of symbolic political and practical policy measures. Do the two approaches conflict or relate? “We the Parliament of Australia respectfully request that this apology be received in the spirit in which it is offered as part of the healing of the nation,” (Rudd 2008). Whilst the parliamentary apology to the Stolen Generations is undeniably a symbolic political measure, it is only through demonstrating genuine and unfettered remorse for the mistreatment the Aboriginal people have suffered that the Government can hope to improve the quality of indigenous life experience. Practical policy measures can only succeed when there is a mutual trust and respect…show more content…
The best known and probably most horrible of these non-indigenous atrocities is of course the Stolen Generations, the transgression for which the government gave the parliamentary apology. The displacement of at least 10% of aboriginal and half-caste children between the years of 1869 and 1969 (although there is ample historical evidence, including recollections of this author’s mother and aunt who had ‘stolen’ children in their class at primary school, indicating that the displacement continued into the 1970’s) remains a central reason for the mistrust between the indigenous and non-indigenous people, as the events of the Stolen Generations are seen as a demonstration of no confidence in indigenous social order and even an attempt to accelerate what was thought to be the inevitable ‘dying-out’ of the aboriginal race (Perry
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