Update 17 September 2006: After having lived in Japan for eight months and returned to Australia, I’d now feel that there *is* something to celebrate about being Australian. Feeling affection for your country doesn’t have to be jingoistic. You can have a quiet sense of appreciation of the beauty of a place, of your family heritage, of the personal connections that that place made for you. That’s healthy, and it’s healthy to want to protect the things you love about your country. But nationalism can go too far, and that’s what inspired this post.
For the sake of all that is holy and great about the human spirit, *don’t celebrate!*
Why not, even though the Australian Government and loads of foolish nationalists would love you to? Because if you’re an Australian citizen, the government stole your money (through taxation) to pay for celebrations that are essentially on its own behalf. Because if you live in the city, an ‘Australian’ identity binds you to rural hicks who vote for the National Party, believe in god, and think homosexual people are evil, and if you’re a rural hick, it binds you to gay urban sophisticates who eat capers and hate god. And because national governments are the greatest murderers in history.
So, on this Australia Day, why not fly a pirate flag instead, and celebrate the pirate spirit, of brotherhood that transcends national borders, and of self-determination and rebellion.