Marcia Langton has accused Peter Dutton of entrenching “racial hatred” into the fiber of Australia in an extraordinary assessment of the failed referendum.
The professor, who was one of the original signatories of the Uluru Declaration from the Heart, gave her first detailed response to the failed referendum in the University of South Australia earlier this month.
He called on the Albanian government to boost regional and local voices despite 60 per cent of Australians voting to not constitutionally enshrine the advisory body in the constitution.
The new proposal of the outspoken defender of indigenous rights The proposal references the 272-page Calma-Langton report, which she co-authored, recommended 35 regional and local voices that were supposed to work alongside the constitutionally enshrined Voice.
There are suggestions that these local voices, which would not require a referendum or even legislation, could be in full swing as early as 2024.
Speaking at the annual Hawke Lecture, Professor Langton blamed the Opposition Leader, as well as Shadow Minister for Indigenous Australians Jacinta Nampijinpa Price and Warren Mundine, for The Voice’s defeat.
He not only accused them of entrenching “racial hatred” into “Australia’s fiber”, but of lying about the details of the Voice, confusing the Australian public and “further entrenching structural racism in our lives”, and then “gloating” . about.
In a speech to the University of South Australia earlier this month, Professor Langton called on the government to begin implementing regional voices despite the referendum defeat.
“They did it with disgusting joy and arrogance,” he told the crowd, who gave him a standing ovation.
Professor Langton called on Yes voters to “get behind us” but warned they “face a bleak future” where “the dark heart of White Australia politics will be not a whisper but a slogan”.
“Reconciliation is dead,” he said.
“Not because we haven’t achieved it, but because the majority of Australians rejected it, guided by a deceptive campaign aimed at dehumanizing us.”
She argued that the no vote meant that Australia could no longer be considered the land of the fair, and that everyday Australians had squandered the opportunity to be absolved of the guilt of our ancestors.
Despite her disappointment, she credited Anthony Albanese for keeping his word and holding the referendum.
While initial polls showed the majority of Australians supported the proposal, by the time October 14 rolled around, pollsters had all been predicting failure for months.
But Professor Langton said “the referendum result was deeply shocking to those of us familiar with it”, who sincerely believed the proposal was based on “contemporary human rights standards”.
Initial polls showed that the majority of Australians supported the proposal, but by the time October 14 arrived, all pollsters had been predicting failure for months.
Echoing recommendations made in her initial report, Professor Langton said Indigenous people “want the federal government to establish a legislated representative body” through “regional voice structures”.
“In addition to legislated representative bodies… indigenous peoples have made it very clear that they want treaties and the establishment of a Makarrata Commission.”
Professor Langton said First Nations people also want governments and institutions to take action towards the ‘real truth’, the third pillar of the Uluru statement from the heart.
Despite his calls for the government to progress treaties, voices of truth and legislation, Professor Langton affirmed Australia’s rejection of a constitutionally enshrined voice marked “the end of reconciliation”.
‘WAnd they are left with the ingenuity and determination of the indigenous people themselves to find another way to live alongside those who stop us,” he said.
Professor Langton also said that “the main attribute of Yes voters was a high level of education”.
He laid the blame squarely at the feet of the No’s most effective advocates: Opposition Leader Peter Dutton, Shadow Indigenous Australians Minister Jacinta Nampijinpa Price and Warren Mundine.
“It’s hard to convey how damaging the activists were to me personally,” he said. ‘The damage to our prospects of living healthy and meaningful lives in our own country is profound.
“Make no mistake, the damage is permanent.”
Professor Langton failed to mention that much of the opposition to the voice came from the failures of the YES campaign.
She herself sparked controversy when she called the No case “racist and stupid” and accused “hardcore No voters” of “spewing racism.”
The Yes campaign was not helped by comments from Thomas Mayo or TV legend Ray Martin.
Martin called No voters ‘morons and dinosaurs’ in a crucial part of the campaign, while Mayo’s ambitions for a Voice leading to a treaty and reparations derailed the message from the start.
Professor Langton said the ‘referendum result was deeply shocking to those of us familiar’, who wholeheartedly believed the proposal was based on ‘contemporary human rights standards’
The crowd gave Professor Langton a standing ovation.
Albanese and his cabinet have frequently referred to the Calma-Langton Report, both during the election campaign and during the last 19 months in government.
The report was delivered to the then coalition government in July 2021 asking 36 voice bodies.
While the national voice will not continue, there are suggestions that the government is considering using the empowered communities program from local and regional indigenous voices.
The program provides First Nations leaders and community representatives from regional and remote areas direct access to decision-makers in government to make suggestions and advocate for their communities.
Professor Langton called for a “strong, resilient and flexible system that…will form part of genuine shared decision-making with governments at local and regional level.”
Albanese and his cabinet have frequently referred to the Calma-Langton Report, both during his election campaign and during his last 19 months in government.
The report called for the National Voice to be made up of 24 members, two from each state and territory (one man, one woman), and an additional five people representing remote regions. One person would be selected to represent the Torres Strait Islander peoples of mainland Australia.
While the federal government has not adopted the report’s recommendations, Albanese frequently urged Australians to read it when asked for more details on voice.
And in the absence of renewed engagement with the Makarrata Commission following the referendum defeat, it is increasingly likely that this suggestion could form part of the Labor government’s indigenous affairs policy for the remainder of its term.
Indigenous Australia Minister Linda Burney said in February she would look to establish a network of regional voices with state and territory governments.
“Those things are very important,” she said. Western Australia.
“We will obviously work with those states and territories as best we can to achieve a network of voices across this country.”
Calma-Langton says ’35 regions in Australia would be necessary to accommodate the complexities of implementing Indigenous voice proposals’.
It also says each region should be able to “decide how best to draw the members of its voice”, whether by election, nomination, expressions of interest or another form of selection.
The report suggested that these methods “would rely on structures based on traditional law and custom, or a combination.”
The group would also be free to determine “how many Voice members there will be.”
Professor Langton and his co-author wrote that these regional voices should be able to provide direct advice to the national voice, creating a ‘two-way flow of advice and communication’ on ‘systemic issues associated with national policies and programmes, and matters of national importance’.
In addition, they sought to ensure that local and regional Voices could advise non-governmental sectors within the communities, such as companies and corporate entities.