澳洲应考虑选个适合的“澳洲国庆日” Australia should consider choosing a more suitable National Day of Australia
在英国殖民统治下，1月26日被选定为“澳洲国庆日”，那在当时是情有可原也是无可厚非的。然而澳洲自从1901年1月1日宣布成立“联邦政府”Commonwealth of Australia后，基本上是宣布“独立”了。但是当时算是名誉上的独立，在实质大部分的条律、联邦国会法案的通过都基本上要英国国会和皇室最后敲定。直到Gough Whitlam总理1972年上任后才终于最后终止英国最高法院上诉权，并钦定澳洲总督必须是澳洲公民等。然而遗憾的是，我们的国家最高元首还是留着给英国的皇室担当。
我非常赞同更改“澳洲国庆日”的日期，因为1月26日是纪念1788年1月26日亚瑟·菲利普船长在杰克森港（Port Jackson，如今的Sydney Cove)升起英国国旗，宣称这里是大英帝国的殖民地的日子。当时在悉尼和澳洲各地生存的原住民土著人被杀的杀、赶的赶的，后来又把他们当奴隶般地看待，实行同化的母子隔离政策等等不公平的待遇。直到1967年公投时，土著原住民才有“同等的投票权和公民权”。
Dr Ka Sing Chua
Under British colonial rule, January 26 was chosen as Australia's National Day which, at the time, was understandable and justifiable. However, since the Federation of Commonwealth of Australia was established on 1 January 1901, Australia has basically declared itself independent. But it was only a matter of honorary independence because the passage of most of the substantive laws and Federal acts, were essentially still have to be ratified by the British Parliament and the Royal Family. It was not until Prime Minister Gough Whitlam took office in 1972 that the right of the highest appeal to the British Supreme Court was finally terminated. And it was determined that the Governor of Australia must be an Australian citizen, etc. Unfortunately, our Head of State has not changed. It still belongs to the British Royal family.
Conservatives often boast that The Royal Family does not control the supreme power of the Australian Parliament. Why should we have to change it?
That is only half right, because constitutionally, through Australian Governor-General and Governors, the British Australian Head of State still control the highest power in the Australian Parliaments including the highest military command. Although the present Governor General and Governors of Australia must be Australian citizens, but if the Australian Constitution is not changed, Australia will remain under the 'control' of the Head of State from United Kingdom.
I am very much in favour of changing the date of Australia's National Day because January 26th was the day (January 26th, 1788, ) when Captain Arthur Phillips landed in Port Jacksons which is today Sydney. He raised the British flag and , declared Australia be the British Empire's colony. Aboriginals who lived in Sydney and around Australia were chased away from the homes , some killed and /or then enslaved, and subjected to assimilation policies whence many children were forcibly segregated and taken away from their parents. It was not until the 1967 referendum that indigenous peoples were given equal rights to vote and citizenship. In 2015, a National Sorry was declared by Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in Federal Parliament to those victims known as Stolen Generation of the indigenous children who were forcefully taken away from their parents.
Of course, we will not forget that Australia also has a dark and sad era of White Australia policies which caused lot of sufferings for many coloured migrants.
For the success and prosperity of modern Australia today, we will certainly not forget the contribution made by the British Government to the development of the Australian colonies in the past. However, in the past 50 years, Australia has implemented a very successful non discriminatory, multicultural policy to accommodate immigrants from all over the world with various religious, cultural, coloured, traditions and language backgrounds. It has transformed Australia into one of the most liveable countries in the world with stability, harmony and prosperity. Without the change, Australia would surely have remained in the anachronism of the White Australia policy.
Therefore, in order to meet the demands of the times and to keep pace with the 21st Century, many far-sighted people have proposed that Australia should change to a more appropriate Australian National Day. A National Day that will be recognized by more than over 150 different ethnic, religious, linguistic and religious communities, and especially the indigenous people who remember the current National Day as Invasive Day when their land was stolen from them.
I therefore very much agree with former Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett's recent proposal to change National Day to January 1. Whether through referendum or not, I hope that the Government and the Opposition can reach a consensus that January 1 be declared the new National Day of Australia as that was the day Federation of Commonwealth of Australia was established and it is a very appropriate date. I believe that the vast majority of Australians will support it wholeheartedly.