Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Media Release

Respect for First Peoples Connection to Country

The Tarkine. Pic: Ted Mead

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens’ Leader and Aboriginal Affairs spokesperson

The Aboriginal Land Council’s calls for the West Coast Aboriginal landscape to be returned should be heard by both the Federal and State Governments.

The takayna coast is recognised as one of the world’s richest archaeological sites. It has evidence of people living there going back tens of thousands of years.

The Hodgman Government needs to take this land claim seriously. It is thirteen years since any significant area of land was returned to its original owners.

During the Labor Green Government, as Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, I tabled legislation to return two parcels of land at larapuna/Eddystone Point and Rebecca Creek, but the Bill was knocked back by the Legislative Council.

Tasmania’s Aboriginal community has a compelling argument to have this highly culturally significant landscape returned. We have no doubt at all that they would be better land managers than the Liberal Government – the same government who wants to open up 4WD tracks in takayna/the Tarkine.

In the past five years, Will Hodgman has not lived up to his promise to reset the relationship with Aboriginal Tasmanians, in fact, he has caused greater division.

In fact, it’s a sign of his failure that, as Premier, he didn’t keep the portfolio, instead giving it to Jacquie Petrusma.

We want Minister Petrusma to succeed in this portfolio and we urge the Minister to look the history of this part of Tasmania, the landscape and the archaeological treasures it holds, and take this claim for land seriously.

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  1. John

    October 7, 2018 at 11:46 am

    I think the sealers and whalers were here before the aboriginal women.

  2. max

    October 7, 2018 at 11:35 am

    I have aboriginal DNA plus possible Picts and Scots, French, Roman, Saxon and who knows what else. The European part of me was shipped out of my home country in chains, what claim have I got on land holdings in England and the other countries based on my DNA. I now think of myself as a dinky die Australian and I want my land to be looked after by our leaders and not divided by DNA.
    I fully respect my aboriginal heritage but I had no control over my past and little over the future but what little control I have is for a better Australia for all.

  3. Simon Warriner

    October 4, 2018 at 6:33 pm

    Yes, the land was stolen. Giving it “back” to someone else who is not the rightful heir is not going to right the wrong that was the original theft, regardless of how much political correctness is poured over the “handback” deed. Nor will any group pretending to be the original inhabitant’s descendants after getting hold of something they had no right to in the first place.

    • Russell

      October 5, 2018 at 8:03 am

      Who is “pretending”? DNA testing can prove or disprove that.

      And who are you saying “had no right to in the first place” to this land Lutruwita (Tasmania)?

      • Simon Warriner

        October 6, 2018 at 2:02 pm

        Yes Russell, DNA testing can prove or disprove ancestry. Odds that it will happen though? I reckon none and Buckley’s.

        I was specific, Russell. You are choosing to ignore what I said in order to create your own straw man. I was referring only to the Arthur Pieman area, or the Tarkine Coast to use the politically correct terminology. I have no objection to Mansell’s mob claiming any land in areas their ancestors traditionally occupied, but claiming land their tribe/s never occupied is as objectionable as it is opportunistic. If you want to dispute my position you need to take issue with Mc Farlane’s thesis and the conclusion I drew from it which I presented to Dr Mc Farlane and with which he agreed.

        As I said, the idea of a village to aid in education and interpretation is a good one. It could be progressed by its proponents without being contingent on a land “hand-back”. It would be interesting to see how that option was received.

  4. Russell

    October 4, 2018 at 8:52 am

    It should not be up to Tasmanian Indigenous people to prove they have any direct to a particular person to have their land returned. To invoke such a condition is ridiculous when the ancestors of these people were deliberately murdered or forcibly relocated by the invaders never to be able to return. Those deliberate and verified criminal acts should legally negate any ‘rights’ to settler ownership resulting from the theft and dispossession of land and assets.

    The land was not sold nor gifted to the invaders, it was stolen.

  5. Simon Warriner

    October 3, 2018 at 6:32 pm

    I sent this to the Advocate in response to their article on the subject.

    Mansell’s current claim on the Arthur Pieman region

    According to (Dr) Ian McFarlane’s doctorial thesis the last original owner of the Arthur Pieman coast left alive was Tynedic. He was last seen on a ship headed to England. Any credible claim for return of that land to it’s original owners needs proof of lineage to that individual. That was the position put in response to a previous land claim lodged in Victoria for land at Sundown Point on behalf of the Braddon 4 Wheel Drive Club. The claim was withdrawn.
    The current claim is based on the premise that there was a form of nation state comprising of all tribes. It would be interesting to see the evidence that this was, in fact, the reality.

    Simon Warriner

    All decision makers on this matter would be well served to read Dr Mc Farlane’s thesis. I am not opposed to the idea of reconstructing a native “village” to aid modern people to understand the life of the original inhabitants of this wild and beautiful place, and this can happen without handing ownership to people whose claim to that land is without merit.

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