This year, we will not be getting an Anzac Day long weekend.

Due to the fact that Anzac Day for 2009 falls on a Saturday, the Returned and Services League of Australia (RSL) believes that it would be inappropriate to move the public holiday to the following Monday because it might encourage people to leave town for a break, instead of participating in the Anzac tribute ceremonies.

Is it un-Australian not to go to the ceremonies? Anzac Day is important for remembrance, though I have never been to a ceremony. At least, not since I moved out of home. Does that make me un-Australian? I still care about the sacrifice that the Anzacs made for our freedom and safety. I still think about it and thank God for it, but apparently I can’t do that were I to travel across and appreciate the country that they fought to protect (lets face it, you’re probably not going to go overseas for a three-day long weekend).

The RSL has also lobbied to move the Salamanca Market from the Saturday to the Sunday for similar reasons. Not only does this potentially financially damage the stall holders, but tourists (who probably don’t read local newspapers) will be wondering where our market went when they arrive on the Saturday morning. Not to mention the tour organisers, cafes and other businesses that rely on the custom generated by the foot traffic that the market brings to Salamanca.

Moving the market: Unfair.
Taking away our public holiday: Un-Australian.

5 Replies to “Un-Australian”

  1. I don’t like “un-Australian” as an insult. It comes from a pompous view that “Australia” represents everything that is good. The next time someone calls me un-Australian, I’ll just show them my British passport.

    I’m not pumped for ANZAC day. Perhaps it’s a controversial (maybe even an ignorant) opinion but I think it indirectly glorifies war.

  2. I’m with you, Jason. (though possibly “un-Australian” isn’t the phrasing I’d use)

    I do think it’s ridiculous though, as it’s not about the ceremonies, it’s about remembering and acknowledging. Moving or changing Salamanca Market is just ridiculous.

    @CL: Your opinion on ANZAC day is interesting… I completely disagree with you though. I don’t think it glorifies war at all, in fact I think it highlights the tragedy of war. Perhaps you just haven’t really been informed what it’s all about?

  3. Hi Japh,
    Yes, there is a lot to do with ANZAC day that I probably don’t understand. But the reason I say it indirectly glorifies war is to do with people’s treatment of the ceremony; not what the ceremony stands for. I feel that a lot of people use it to idolize Australia, and there’s something about the way the war is remembered that makes me uncomfortable. It seems to be less about regret for war in itself but regret that we lost that battle.

    I hope that makes sense. I recognise it’s not a conventional opinion, and it’s something I’m trying to think through.

  4. Ah, yeah that makes a bit more sense. I personally don’t “celebrate” the event or ceremony in the way that some do. But any ANZAC sort of ceremony or commemoration I have attended, has always been a very somber affair, lamenting the loss of life.

    While it can be quite subjective, I think those events I did attend reflected the spirit of the occasion.

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