Well it’s Australia Day and we’re celebrating! A quick look at what’s happening around the globe reminds us that we all have a great deal to be thankful for, particularly the relative peace and harmony in which we live.
Given that the 2011 Census revealed that over a quarter (26%) of our population was born overseas and a further one fifth (20%) had at least one overseas-born parent, Australia’s society is still remarkably free of racial tension. Yes, you will find examples of racism, concern about the influx of asylum seekers and questions about the dilution of the “original” Anglo-Saxon stock with Asian blood, but for the greater part our citizens from across the globe comfortably co-exist. Indeed Australia’s artistic, musical, academic, culinary and sporting worlds and a great deal more have been immeasurably enriched and enhanced by the diverse contributions of our migrants!
Therefore when a candidate for a fledgling political party asks where he can find non-Halal lamb, someone should tell him to “put a sock in it!” Jamie Cavanough, who is standing for Bob Katter's Australian Party claims he does not want meat that has been turned to face Mecca and blessed, nor does he want his money to go to the Muslim community. If they weren’t so potentially divisive, his comments, in their stupidity are hardly worth reporting. In the final count, in being exhorted to eat lamb on Australia Day, someone conveniently forgot that sheep came to our shores along with the first white settlers. If we want to be absolutely true to our Australian heritage, the lean, fat-free, grass-grazed kangaroo meat is the way to go and being free-range and unblessed should offend no-one. Mind you, someone will probably complain that we’re the only country that eats the animal that graces its coat of arms. Happy Australia Day!