Adam Goodes. The mere mention of the man’s name will elicit all sorts of responses.
Whether you like the tribal dance that he (and Lewis Jetta) did or not, there is a broader issue at play. A conversation is happening for all Australians to determine the values and characteristics they want to live by, which will set in motion the actions of forthcoming generations.
But what we’re seeing is Australia, a relatively young country in comparison to the rest of the world, wrestling with major issues, in much the same way a young adult wrestles with their identity as they’re let loose into the world after completing school and turning 18.
Freedom abounds, but with freedom comes responsibility. Responsibility to others, and to society at large.
Australia has left school and is growing up and in the process, figuring out what’s important and who she’d like to become.
It’s growing up because it is being forced to wrestle with a plethora of difficult topics: Same Sex Marriage, climate change, asylum seekers, overseas food imports, value and sanctity of life, national security and the list goes on.
Add to that, racism, and the debate sparked by Adam Goodes, a former Australian of the Year and proud Aboriginal.
It’s playing out in the media and Adam Goodes is the bloke who has drawn the attention, but make no mistake, as a country, we are sorting out our moral code and the values we hold dear.
So as the conversation happens around you, consider the type of person you’re becoming. Consider how racism and prejudice of all kinds may influence your choices and determine the people you hang around with.
It’s up to us to be the world we want to live in, and teach those values to the people who are watching us.
The chorus of hype surrounding freedom of speech is alive and well, yet when it happens it divides.
You have a freedom to speak, but you don’t have a freedom to segregate. Words are powerful, choose them carefully, and in the process you’ll learn what you stand for and what’s important.
When we all analyse ourselves in this way, our country matures and we unite.
* * * * *
Here is a great video explaining the issue really clearly. Watch from 0-2.30mins