Growing up Australian Day was always something I looked forward too. First and foremost it meant a day off school because it’s a nationally recognised public holiday, so that was always a win. But as I grew up it began to mean a lot more. It represented what it felt like to be a proud Australian. You’d have a BBQ, enjoy the sun and spend time with family and friends, acknowledging the proud Australian heritage you had. 

Somewhere between 2016 and 2016 (no typo there, all sarcasm intended) people began questioning what it really represents. Now, for the purposes of this post I’m not going to go back through time with a lesson in history because I have full intention of keeping the focus on today and what it should still represent.

I was born in the 80s so Australia to me, was, well, the Australia I know today. A place where people can live safely and in peace. Where you can just about be anyone you like and live virtually anywhere you want with a relatively good chance you’ll be pretty well accepted. Like all countries no doubt there are exceptions to that rule but for the most part it’s what I witness on the daily. I’m sure all countries have some level of history that wasn’t ideal, and had it been done today, would almost of certainly unfolded into a different story. But that was then. And today is today.

All Australians ought to be very proud of this country and where we live. Your ability to express yourself now days is possible with an unprecedented amount of freedom, so much so that if one disagrees with a minority view then you border as a rife opponent of equality and social freedom. So thank your lucky stars today is today. 

This Australian Day I will proudly enjoy a BBQ with all family and friends. Regardless of race, gender, religion or background. If you’re cooking on a grill beside me in the park or on a beach, your a friend. 

Ivan. 

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