At the time many disagreed saying that Rudd was sincere and that his apology was a beginning if nothing else.
I wondered about the sincerity of those who would so quickly credit an apology without paying too much mind to the fact that structural/material recompense was hardly motioned.
What is the use of an apology?
Not much if you take the guilt and political interests of white Australia out of the equation.
In other words, the apology served the narrow political interests of the colonizers in that it sought to erase their guilt and, thereby, to legitimize the colonization of Aboriginals.
In these terms it should hardly come as a surprise that a year later Aboriginals have gained nothing, nada, and niks out of Rudd's apology.
The apology remains a symbolic sham.
Michael Mansell, director of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre, says that Rudd has used the apology to ignore the dismal living conditions of most Aborigines.
"Aboriginal people, and especially members of the stolen generations, are probably worse off now than when Kevin Rudd made the apology a year ago ... There is no land rights for the dispossessed, no compensation for the stolen generations, the health standards are not improving and the Aboriginal imprisonment rate continues to climb ... Any criticism of Mr Rudd's neglect to address Aboriginal issues is met with the stock government response that it gave the apology ... The apology has provided the Rudd government with a political shield against criticism of its failures in Aboriginal affairs."Absolutely so! And why would anyone have expected anything else?
Apologies of this nature are by definition nothing more than political instruments meant to advantage the state over conceding any real guilt.
Rudd is the quintessentially trapped liberal whose gestured enlightenment proved to be nothing more than empty words.
Aboriginal life in occupied Australia remains the worst of all populations groups. In fact, Aboriginal life ranks among the lowest in terms of quality and longevity of any people anywhere in the world.
Nothing has changed. Again, why would it?
Former Prime Minister John Howard's genocidal policies continue unabated.
Rudd is merely another insincere colonizer in a long line of colonizers stretching back to 1788 when the first white settlers arrived in Sydney Cove.