This new book on the Voice needs to be read:
Barbara Miller has a long history of activism in Aboriginal affairs and has worked for decades with indigenous Australians. Indeed, she has an Aboriginal husband. So she is no racist or white supremacist – although she is white. She cares deeply about this country and is concerned that the Voice referendum will cause more harm than good.
She is also a committed Christian, so her new book looks in detail at biblical principles and how they might be brought to bear on this controversial referendum. Thus she closely examines some key biblical truths such as justice, peace, fairness, forgiveness, reconciliation and racism.
She argues that the Voice will undermine many of these key biblical values and cause even more division:
If successful, the Voice will introduce a race-based or ancestry/heritage-based body into the constitution, which is therefore discriminatory and goes against the equality of law in a democracy. It will have the power to advise not just the government but the executive or public service, etc., on anything not just Indigenous affairs. This could greatly delay government decision-making and end up in high court challenges. Very little detail is available, so we are meant to give a blank cheque.
Miller urges Christians to become familiar not just with basic biblical principles but with history as well. Too often we are given a secular left view of history which is really revisionist history. The churches need to know their history as well, and not allow radical agendas to determine how they think and proceed. She quotes the mother of No campaigner Jacinta Price, Bess Nungarrayi Price:
I am deeply disappointed by the churches who have accepted this aggressive wokeness and allowed themselves to become naive virtue-signalers rather than moral guardians and teachers. My people are crying out for moral guidance. Instead, they are being told that their culture, however the Left of politics defines it, is always right. Our culture should be critically analysed and improved like any other. We are not all just ‘victims’ who can’t help ourselves in a culture that is faultless.
And of course biblical Christians should rightly be concerned about elements of Aboriginal spirituality. She writes:
Of course, we need to respect the right of all religions to practice their culture in Australia as long as it upholds human rights or dignity and is not illegal. However, modern Australia was founded as a Judeo-Christian nation, and that should be respected. Sorcery is still an issue in Aboriginal communities, as reported by Aboriginal pastors, and we need to be aware of it. There is also syncretism called Rainbow Theology in which the rainbow serpent, commonly seen as the creator in Aboriginal Dreamtime stories, is the creator in a Christian rainbow theology and not the snake in the garden.
Miller also has chapters on things like cultural Marxism, the Frankfurt School, and identity politics. These all explain good and evil in terms of class struggle or race struggle or power struggle. Some groups are the victims while other groups are the oppressors. Christianity of course says otherwise:
We have all sinned no matter what our birth category is. And many of our categories, e.g., whiteness and blackness, we can’t change. So, white males are perpetually the sinner in identity politics without redemption or the possibility of forgiveness. It doesn’t matter how many times they say sorry or try to make amends in other ways. For example, they don’t need to be personally racist, but they are part of the white race and must eternally pay the price for the sins of their whiteness.
Christianity provides genuine reconciliation, forgiveness and unity. The Voice does the opposite. Some of the things being pushed by the Yes camp include:
-Co-sovereignty and co-government to negotiate with the Australian government
-Treaties, Agreement-Making and Makarrata
-Reparations that would likely be a percentage of GDP
Miller says the No camp on the other hand seeks for things like this:
-A united Australia where everything is not seen through the lens of race
-An Australia where there is one class of citizens, not two
-Recognition that it is disempowering to enshrine Aboriginal victimhood into the constitution in perpetuity
-That the government would listen to the voices of First Nations people that already exist
-That the most marginalized First Peoples would get the help they need, especially women and children
-Recognition that Aboriginal culture pre-colonisation, and as practiced today, is part of the problem
There is a lot of history, personal stories, and detail found in this short volume, along with a lot of references. Australians need to know what the Voice is really all about, and that the best thing we can do is say no to it.