Thousands of people protest in King George Square on June 06, 2020 in Brisbane, Australia.
Thousands of people protest in King George Square on June 06, 2020 in Brisbane, Australia.

'If politicians don't want protests show Black Lives Matter'

DEAR Senator Mathias Cormann, 

You  said of the Black Lives Matter demonstrations: "it is incredibly selfish, it's incredibly self-indulgent and it does impose an unnecessary and unacceptable risk on to the community."

Aboriginal communities during the pandemic underwent disciplined self-isolation at considerable self-sacrifice. 

If, after such responsible behaviour, Aboriginal people hold marches to demonstrate that Black Lives Matter, the logical conclusion should've been that the risk of demonstrating was outweighed by the gravity of the issue. 

Those bereaved families leading marches, whose loved ones died in police custody, were not being "selfish", or "self-indulgent".  Death in custody is worse than losing a loved one in a road accident when, at least, your grief is respected. But for these families there was no closure, no healing, no respect. 

They even had to fight to get the truth of what happened. No one was held to account for the crime. 

They were treated with contempt. 

It's twenty-nine years since the benchmark Royal Commission made its recommendations. NONE have been implemented. In twenty-nine years, 432 people have died in police custody - fathers, mothers, young people. NO prosecutions.  If you don't want more demonstrations in the streets, then do something to show Black lives DO matter.

Philip Armit, Toowoomba


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