[lg policy] Tasmanian Tarkine advocates release political video spoken in the language of the state's Aboriginal people

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Mon Feb 5 10:27:23 EST 2018

 Tasmanian Tarkine advocates release political video spoken in the language
of the state's Aboriginal people
By Fiona Blackwood

Updated Sat at 11:19pm

Media player: "Space" to play, "M" to mute, "left" and "right" to seek.
*Video:* The political advertisement uses Tasmanian Aboriginal language to
highlight Tarkine concerns (ABC News)
*Related Story:* Jacqui Lambie Network candidate charged over alleged quad
bike jaunt
*Related Story:* Bid to reopen Tarkine four-wheel drive tracks stirs anger
*Related Story:* Aboriginal leader accuses Labor of vying for 'redneck
vote' over Tarkine 4WD tracks
*Map: * Savage River 7321

An advertisement featuring the language of the Aboriginal people in
Tasmania is being rolled out during the state election campaign.

The video highlights concerns about a Liberal plan to re-open four-wheel
drive tracks in the state's north-west.

The Arthur Pieman Conservation Area on Tasmania's coast has been closed to
vehicles for five years, and the State Government's bid to re-open tracks
is still being considered by the Federal Environment Minister.

Now, the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre and the Wilderness Society have
produced an advertising campaign in the local Aboriginal language.

Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre CEO Heather Sculthorpe said using the local
Indigenous language to defend Aboriginal heritage was a powerful tool.

The ad states that the Premier Will Hodgman talks reconciliation, "but he
doesn't walk it".

"He wants to cover our heritage with rubber mats and drive over it for fun."

Ms Sculthorpe said despite a pledge to reset the relationship with
Aboriginal people, Mr Hodgman had ignored Aboriginal opinions "to the point
where we were forced to go to the Federal Court to defend our heritage".

"That's a hostile act that prioritises cheap, local politics in far
north-west Tasmania over his own moral pledge to lead reconciliation in
Tasmania," she said.

Ms Sculthorpe said she was proud of the ad and hoped it would resonate with
a wide audience.

Wilderness Society spokesman Vica Bayley said Aboriginal people had been
horrified by the Government's policy to expand four-wheel drive tracks
across the sensitive and sacred landscapes.

He said the tracks were closed in 2012 based on advice they were doing
irreparable damage to Aboriginal heritage sites like middens, tool scatters
and hut depressions.
Liberals defend policy

In a statement, the Hobart Liberal Government defended its promise to
provide access to the Tarkine region.

"Unlike Labor and the Greens, we don't support locking up the Tarkine," a
spokesman said.

"Already more than 50 per cent of Tasmania is in reserves.

"We are currently working with the Federal Government to ensure that this
can be achieved in a way that minimises the impact on the environment and
upon Aboriginal heritage."

The statement said the Government had substantially delivered on its
commitment to "reset" the relationship as promised.

This included changing government policy to provide a more inclusive
definition of Aboriginality, as well as adding Aboriginal history to the
school curriculum


 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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