At the Australia Day Ceremony in #Unley, Professor Rob Morrison was the Australia Day Ambassador.
He delivered a lively speech that reflected broadly on the make-up of Australia; a character portrayal of what it is to be an Australian.
His speech encouraged debate on the subject.
However, I disagree with his main thrust that it is too soon, too early to categorise Australia. He said that only just over 200 years had past since colonisation and that it was too early.
Nonsense. And there was no mention of the Aborigines who have been here for 65,000+ years.
The culture of a country evolves over time, so there is no problem with our perception of our country changing over time; as it will; as it has.
Australia has the richest cultural diversity of any country and that adds to the problem of achieving consensus on what it is to be Australian. The problem is compounded by the fact that many of Australia's newer cultures are constrained (or are in silos) in our society and are not fully integrated. It will take time for greater mainstream integration.
He also stated that it is patronising to say to a person that something is un-Australian. It probably is somewhat patronising, but we all say it from time to time; and usually the situation warrants the comment; or so we think.
Perhaps I should cease to use the phrase to avoid hurt to the other person. It is a statement to which the other person can not respond.
In brief, no it is not too soon to define what it is to be an Australian.
In fact we should make that definition.
Now, and again and again in the future as the country evolves.