Thirteen years ago, Mark Latham led the Labor Party. He was the favourite son and chief representative of Labor values and philosophy. At that time, no one would have thought that today he would spearhead a campaign against Labor left and the Greens to save Australia Day. That’s because 13 years ago, the Labor Party was a very different political organisation.
Every day, the social agenda of the Labor Party more closely resembles that of the Greens. In particular, Labor’s left faction and the Greens’ policies are almost indistinguishable when it comes to social issues confronting our three tiers of government. Broadly, this social agenda is accurately described as a culture war.
Until the last few years, social policy still lived in the sensible mainstream for both major parties, and the Greens were considered whacky fringe dwellers. But through concerted campaigns in our schools and other institutions where values are imparted to people at a formative age, the fringe has migrated, not only to wholly encompass the Greens, but to occupy positions of power within the Labor Party, in particular, their left faction. Now their sights are squarely set on changing the date of Australia Day. In fact, this year, Richard Di Natale has named changing the date as one of his top priorities. Not jobs, not health, not national security, but changing the date for Australia Day.
But what makes this issue a top priority of the left agenda?
Certainly, there are many people in our indigenous community who are calling for the date to be changed, because with British colonisation came attempted genocide, dispossession and dehumanisation for many years thereafter. These are undeniable truths that no one should be walking away from. But it is colonisation, significantly marked by the arrival of the first fleet and raising of the British flag on January 26, 1788, that was the defining event in the establishment of Australia – an Australia that is imbued with the rule of law, Judeo-Christian values and Western democratic systems that we inherited from Britain.
Not all of our history following the arrival of the First Fleet is good, not all of it is bad, but it makes us who we are. If we lose our heritage, warts and all, we as a country no longer have a guiding history and culture on which to stand. And as the old maxim goes, when you stand for nothing, you fall for everything.
This is precisely the position the left wants our country to be in: to abandon our heritage in order to pursue their own agenda.
The Labor left and the Greens have embraced indigenous voices calling for a date change as if they alone have concern for our indigenous brothers and sisters. But they have entirely ignored other first Australians, perhaps a minority, who want it to remain on 26 January. The left are not interested in a debate, they’re not interested in listening to people, they’re only interest is self-interest. If we apply a little intellectual honesty, as with any left-wing social agenda, whether it be the push to become a republic, to change our flag or to rename some of our electorates, this is how the left consistently treat minorities – as pawns to be used for their own purpose to rewrite history and disassociate Australia from its British heritage.
Nor do the left suggest a date to replace January 26 that has any connection to our British heritage. Some commentators have suggested that, if the date were changed, the day Australia became a federation, or the day our parliament opened might be appropriate. But we hear no rush from the Labor left or the Greens to back these days which still recognise our British heritage because in rewriting history, the left are empowered to rewrite truth, culture and values for our nation.
If you have any doubt that this is the agenda of Labor left and the Greens, indeed it was the father of communism himself, Karl Marx, who not only said “The first battlefield is the rewriting of history’ but ‘Take away the heritage of a people and they are easily destroyed.’
Karina Okotel is a Federal Vice President of the Liberal Party of Australia.
Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.