January 26 means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. So we asked some Australians of all makes and models what they thought:
Dr Anita Heiss
Author, Wiradjuri nation
To me, January 26 is a day for both reflection and celebration. As the date marks the beginning of the invasion of Australia and the process of colonisation that followed, it’s important for me as an Australian to stop and reflect on a story that is often forgotten by commentators and every day Aussies amongst the official ceremonies and backyard BBQs across the land, that of Australia’s First Peoples.
But it is also a day when I celebrate the survival of the oldest culture in the world. I always attend the Yabun festival in Sydney, which was first conceived as the Survival Concert back in 1992. This event (duplicated in various forms nationally) showcases the talent that thrives in the Indigenous community today. It is a day when our arts and culture are enjoyed by both Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and international visitors alike.