Black Lives Matter Protests Remind Us to Pay the Rent.
The Black Lives Matter protests in the USA remind us of the need to do our bit by Paying the Rent.
Pay the Rent means recognising that we live on stolen land; that Aboriginal sovereignty has never been ceded; and that, without a treaty, we continue to owe rent to traditional owners.
Gunai/Maar man Robbie Thorpe writes: “The Pay the Rent concept is much more than a tokenistic monetary payment made directly to the Aboriginal people. Not only will it ensure self-determination and economic independence but it also and more importantly recognises Aboriginal Sovereignty.”
In noting that the last 200 years have been marked by betrayal and broken promises, he says, “It is difficult for us to trust you unless you prove yourself in practical terms. We therefore ask you to acknowledge our sovereignty and land ownership rights, and prove your sincerity in practical terms by Paying the Rent for use of our land.”
There will be no justice for Aboriginal people until a treaty has been made and reparations paid. In the meantime, it is our obligation to Pay the Rent.
In Victoria, a formal Pay the Rent structure now exists. If you live in Victoria, please consider paying the rent through them. Their website also includes some information on progress regarding formal Pay the Rent structures in other parts of Australia.