Australian Dream: Oral

Essay by stoned_raider186High School, 11th grade May 2004

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"As an Australian citizen

I affirm my loyalty to Australia and its people

Whose democratic beliefs I share

Whose rights and liberties I respect

And whose laws I uphold and obey"

On this day in 1818, 186 years ago, the very first Australia Day ceremony was held to celebrate the 30th anniversary of white settlement in Australia. A celebration of the diverse beliefs and experiences that make up our country; difference and unity; respect and equality; mateship and fairness; the mutual acceptance of spirituality; freedom of thought and expression; the land, both harsh and fragile; everything that makes up our country.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am (enter name), and I'm here on this celebrated day to review our personal view of ourselves, and whether it really does represent the true Aussie that we have all come to know and love.

Is our culture really based around mateship and fairness, pulling together when the chips are down? Are we truly focused on freedom across the land and fairness under the law? Is the oldest known culture, the Indigenous, truly accepted in everyday life? Are diverse cultures and backgrounds brought together under one flag? Is our country a compassionate one? Are we a land of opportunity?

Known to be loyal to their neighbours, Australia is said to be a nation of 'mates'.

But how many of us actually know our neighbours, their names, what they do to make their quid? Not only those directly next door, but down the entire street. Referring to Australian citizens as the epitome of mateship is sounding more and more suspect every day. The original state of this country may have been solely based on loyalty and friendship, but as generations' pass, the evidence is fading. Mateship is breaking down. Often when you're in...