I've received many messages on Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and via my Contact Me form on my website.
Most of them were positive, the vast majority of them were wanting a copy of their pic (which I'm happy to do) and thanking me for capturing images of such an important event which touches me deeply. I consider these photos the most important photos I've ever taken.
A couple (vast minority, 5% tops) around the current COVID situation weren't positive.
So here's the thing.
- As of Saturday, we had 3 confirmed cases of COVID-19 QLD wide. All states bar NSW and Victoria are tracking exceptionally well. Yesterday Australia had our first day of 0 community transmissions. Beyond all expectations, we have flattened the curve.
- I'm also in a position where I can (and have been as a precaution) self isolate without issue.
Here's the bigger thing.
- People are talking about this event like it's a day at a theme park or day at the beach. It wasn't. It wasn't a social event. Yes, I marched with a friend and ran into people I knew (and grabbed a beer after) but that wasn't planned and I would've done the whole thing alone. It was standing in solidarity with The First Nations People to raise awareness about racial inequality and hopefully make some strides towards equality and justice.
I'm speaking as whitefellas here (as the aboriginals used to call us on Palm Island). Saturday was not about us. It was about the blackfellas (as we called them). Our role was to listen, support, and protect (and we did that well). But it was never about us.
This isn't risking your grandmother's life to open the economy. This was a stand for basic human rights. Standing against oppression, assault, and murder of people based on the colour of their skin.
- People are talking about this event like it only took place in QLD. It didn't, marches and rallies happened all over the world.
- People keep bringing up, "there are other ways to show support". That's true, but if other methods of showing support had worked in the past, we wouldn't have been in a position to feel compelled to march on Saturday.
- And yes the timing of the event in the middle of COVID wasn't great. However what also wasn't great timing was the killing of George Floyd, and the many deaths in custody and at the hands of police brutality of people of colour before, and after him.
And here's the biggest thing:
- The gap between First Nations and Caucasians health and lifestyle is appalling. The First Nations people didn't ask for this to happen. Our ancestors did it to them, and we have continued to do this to them and to allow the current situation to continue. I (and others) likely had ancestors on the First Fleet. We owe the First Nation's People for what our ancestors did, and for allowing what happens to continue to happen, we owe them in no small part. A pittance of a handout just doesn't cut it.
And that's why I took part in the rally on Saturday, and why I would do it all over again.
Now, I fully respect others' decision to not take part in Saturday's rally for whatever reason (except racial prejudice). Some people just can't take the risk. It's a big ask in the current climate, but in return I ask and expect others to respect my decision to take part.
So if you still take issue with the rally or me taking part, I'll ask you to kindly Unfollow me on all  social media and to not visit my website or contact me again.
Thanks.

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