Reconciliation    ARCHBISHOP SAYS STOLEN GENERATION DEBATE IGNORES TOTAL SUFFERING
Archbishop John Bathersby of Brisbane has joined the debate concerning the number of aboriginal children forcibly removed from their families, arguing that the Federal Government is ignoring the bigger picture of the total suffering of aborigines through the dispossession of their land and the destruction of their culture.
   He said: "Australians cannot ignore the fundamental truth and reality of the prior existence and possession of this land by aboriginal people before European settlement. Their consequent dispossession, decimation as a people, and cultural destruction is the fundamental reality and the original sin of our nation.
   "It is not surprising that so much anger and emotion is aroused when Australians seek to ignore this fundamental truth. Indigenous people must rightly feel that there has never been an adequate recognition of the truth of the Australian situation - facts that are easily discerned by any simple study of Australian history."
   - Cath Comm (Bris)
6/4/00

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