Voting: An Australian politician voted “yes” at my children’s school event

A few weeks ago my children celebrated their 150th school anniversary, and there was a lot of fanfare to celebrate the milestone, all kicked off with a school assembly.

Due to the significance of the day, several VIP guests were invited and attended, including the Member of Parliament from the school’s electorate.

The MP declared her yes for the vote

The MP was one of the first speakers and followed immediately after the Indigenous members of the school community: both students and parents, who performed the “Welcome to Country” and musical performance.

She not only emphasized and celebrated the importance of the school’s anniversary, but also declared her yes to the upcoming referendum or vote.

When she announced this, I was initially surprised that she had done this and also a little nervous.

I reacted this way because I know the voice has become very divisive, so I wasn’t sure how her comment would sound. I also did this because at the time I viewed the event as a 150th anniversary event for the school and I didn’t want the focus to be on anything other than that.

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“Your statement sparked an important conversation”

However, as I thought about it later that day, I realized that the referendum and the core question were related to this 150th anniversary and that I was glad that she had previously stated her position on it to the thousand-plus audience.

The audience included both children and adults, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians and non-Indigenous Australians, those who can vote and those who one day will; This means that everyone who was there had some connection to the school community and also to the future of Australia. Therefore, it was important and necessary to have something as important as the voice mentioned.

It also had a flow-on effect. By raising his voice, the representative created an unprecedented, important discourse between parents, educators and students that would last for days.

My daughters told me that when many children returned to their classrooms later that day, they asked their teachers what the voice meant and why King had spoken about it. They then asked more questions and discussed not only this topic, but also referendums and democracy in general.

“Open discourse about the voice is part of democracy”

My two daughters then continued the conversation at home, wanting to know more, and for me, that healthy questioning and urge to learn sparked by two sentences King said through the voice was important and something that simply cannot be underestimated may.

While there is a lot of criticism of the vote and the referendum in terms of wording, detail, cost, rights and impact; The fact is that in Australia we are fortunate to be in a position where this can be debated and we can cast our vote without fear of repercussions.

And that is another fact that my children and those who were present that day also witnessed firsthand.

Regardless of their age and whether they are allowed to vote or not, it is important to understand the problems facing our society and play an active role in solving them. Not only will it help children gain a deeper understanding of Australian society and culture, which in itself has a range of benefits including empathy, but it will also help them as adults to be active in Australian democracy , by being confident voters.

It was also a very valuable learning experience as, regardless of your position on the vote, a referendum is an important event in Australian society. Therefore, we are using this as an opportunity for our children to learn first hand what a referendum is and hearing from MPs on this issue are such valuable opportunities to learn from.

Read related topics:EducationStories from real life

Rick Schindler

Rick Schindler is a Worldtimetodays U.S. News Reporter based in Canada. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Rick Schindler joined Worldtimetodays in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: RickSchindler@worldtimetodays.com.

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