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The White Australia Policy

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Neave Harrop

on 9 June 2014

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Transcript of The White Australia Policy

The White Australia Policy
TV and the News
Australian TV, as seen below, is largely influenced by White European cultures. Members of Non-European races are not well represented in many of these shows. This influences the population on their views and actions resulting in a narrow-minded society. The news is another major influence of the media and show certain races in particular ways. They show asylum seekers in a negative light and many other immigrants as intruders. News bias is also a concern and this influences the population as it only provides one opinion, of the particular TV/radio station.
Advertising and Movies
The Australia Parliament's alignment with the UK and the USA at the time of the White Australia Policy is quoted to demonstrate "genuine affinity and affection between our people". This has therefore created the current 'White European' biased government and this influences governmental decisions and laws. Australia is still under the influence of Britain, as the current Queen Elizabeth II is our Head of State and we remain a part of the British Commonwealth. This is demonstrated on the Australian flag, as it contains the Union Jack, which is the flag of England. The Australian flag, however, does not acknowledge any other culture of its past, present or future.
Government-An Aboriginal Representation
Sporting Influence - Australia's Game
AFL Indigenous Round
Although unclear, this page of the Immigration Act of 1901 discusses the populations that were and were not accepted into Australia. People who were unable to complete the dictation test, which may be completed in up to 16 languages (this number was decided by the overseeing officer) were not accepted, also anyone who was insane, likely to commit an offence, a prostitute or someone who is under contract to do manual labour in the Commonwealth. This original decision by the Australian Government has effected today's society as it has created a government that is predominantly 'white' and White European influenced media and sport.
The population in Australia from 1901 dramatically changed. The proportion of Australian born residents increased as the overseas born population decreased, with 22.8% of the population born overseas in 1901 to only 16.48% of the population being born overseas in 1911. This change was discussed at the 1919 Paris Peace Conference, with the at-the-time Prime Minister saying it was "the greatest thing we have ever achieved".
Media Influences
Neighbours, Modern Family, Friends and The Big Bang Theory. All these TV shows depict the view of the ideal 'White European' race, although they may not mention this idea directly. Favourite characters, such as Penny (The Big Bang Theory), are idolised for their looks and this may subconsciously enforce the 'white' ideal on the viewer. The cultural connections with countries such as America provides Australians with a narrow-minded view of ideals through the influence of media outlets such as movies, TV and advertising. These outlets are broadcast on commercial Australian TV channels, reaching a large proportion of the population. Channels such as the SBS and ABC demonstrate different values, and present shows that depict the multicultural Australia and the World, however, these shows are aimed for older generations and may not appeal to the younger population, the future of Australia.
Racial Abuse
Adam Goodes, pointing out the 13 year old girl who racially abused him during a football match, calling him an 'ape'. This demonstrates how the influence of the superior 'white race' idea enforced by the White Australia Policy in 1901 ('ape' being used to imply primitive and uneducated) is still prominent in today's society.
The White Australia Policy
The White Australia Policy, signed 23 December 1901, began the superior 'white' race idea in Australia. Enforcement such as the dictation test continued this idea and began to force the non-white-European population out of Australia. To do this, laws were passed to only allow white-Europeans into Australia by the dictation test and forced any non white-Europeans out of the country, such as the Kanakas people, who were employed in Queensland and were from the Southern Pacific Islands. Such people were to be deported by an act created in 1901 from 1906.
The sporting community is one that encompasses most Australians and is mainly influenced by the AFL, Australia's game. The events at games show that, although the AFL celebrate multiculturalism (seen in the next video), the general public still feel it is 'white' Australia's game. Any player who does not fit the typical White European is singled out, and often players can be abused and discriminated against. Majak Daw, an AFL player from the team the North Melbourne Football Club, is Sudanese and has therefore received multiple racial taunts throughout his career. This example, plus many others, demonstrate the general public's view on how they would like their sports people to look and do therefore not accept anyone who is different.
This add for the AFL Indigenous Round shows the AFL accepting all cultures from around the world into Australia's game.
The White Australia Policy has made Australia a nation that is
biased towards the White European population.
2% of the Australian Olympic team in 2012 were Indigenous Australians. This demonstrates the effect of the White Australia Policy as it shows how it has created the dominant 'white race'. It shows how the Australian public is now almost forced into celebrating and acknowledging the majority White-European team. As the Olympics provides role models for many sport-centered Australians, it emphasises the sense that successful athletes of Australia are White-European.
Because Aboriginals were only allowed to vote from 1962, no Aboriginal had ever been in Parliament before Neville Bonner (seen above). Neville Bonner was the first Indigenous Member of Parliament, elected in 1971. Indigenous representation in the Australian government was lacking ever since Federation in 1901, and there is still only Indigenous representation in state parliaments today.
Movies, TV and advertising are huge areas of today's technological savvy Australia. American and British movies are the predominant movies in Australia and therefore influence the narrow-minded view of the 'white race', Movie awards such as the Oscars are plastered across Australian TVs for the weeks leading up to them and the award night itself. The 'Oscar Selfie', which was so popular it crashed Twitter, demonstrates the effect of media on the nation and provides the typical look and behaviour of a modern-day person. Advertising, such as the Lara Bingle advert "Where the bloody hell are you?" shows the extent of the stereotypical Australian as Lara Bingle states her famous line, as if talking on behalf of everybody in Australia. There is only mention of one non White-European activity and, although this video does relate to the Indigenous heritage of Australia, it predominantly depicts Australians as White-Europeans, as it enforces the idea of how Australians should look and act.
In conclusion, the White Australia Policy has created a White European biased nation as it has influenced the government, media and sport. The influence on the government has created society that does not accept cultures that are not their own, therefore influencing the broader Australian population. The media has a great influence on the population as a whole, as it provides a narrow-minded view of the ideal life in a White European society. Sport is another major influence as it is an important part of most Australian's lives and while in AFL there is the celebrated
Indigenous Round, racial abuse is still prominent at games and teams are predominantly White European. The Australian teams also show this bias and influences the younger generations as the teams provide mentors and idols, who are therefore White European.
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