Indigenous journalist Stan Grant spoke at the IQ2 Racism Debate in October, asserting that the Australian dream is “rooted in racism”. A video of his talk has been online for about a week. On viewing it Mike Carlton declared, “Honestly. I think this Stan Grant speech will one day be viewed as a Martin Luther King moment.” Jeez, there’s some funny stuff happening inside Carlton’s head.

Grant elaborates on Australian racism:

When asked about the impact of the “war of extermination” and the ignorance of many Australians about this history, Grant responded: “It really is part of the problem.”

“It astounds me in many ways because we only have to travel our landscape to see the markers of this.

“Where I come from, just outside of Griffith in Narrandera, there is a sign that marks ‘poison waterholes creek’ where people were poisoned.

“There is an island in the middle of the Murrumbidgee river called Murdering Island where people were shot. There are markers for this everywhere.

“If people listened to the stories that I’ve been told as a boy growing up. If people had been able to share these stories instead of being told this myth of the peaceful settlement of Australia then we would understand this history.

There was no “war of extermination”. Had there been, the British would have used applied superior organisational skills and an overwhelming technological advantage to actually exterminate indigenous Australians.

Also, stories and colourfully sinister place names do not necessarily reflect historical facts. Many tales of “massacres” are either untrue or grossly exaggerated. There are conflicting versions of events at poison waterholes creek involving animals killed by noxious plants and dingoes killed by baits.

Grant would do well to confine his commentary on “racist” Australia to the facts.

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