Masters of Social Chaos. "White Out: How Politics Is Killing Black Australia", by Rosemary Neill. [review]
For a long time in her column in 'The Australian', Rosemary Neill has been breaking the taboo that Aboriginal affairs must not be discussed honestly. She has now brought her researches and thoughts together in a book. The book appears just after the taboo has finally been overthrown and has thus been robbed of some of its impact. Neill, in her columns, deserves some credit for unsettling the taboo, though what was needed for its overthrow was for Aborigines themselves to start speaking the truth. This, fortunately, has now occurred. The statements by Noel Pearson and John Ah Kitt have given a licence for a new, frank discussion on Aboriginal affairs. It can now be said openly that alcoholism, drug abuse, domestic violence and neglect of children are much worse in Aboriginal communities than in the population generally, and, moreover, that the situation is getting worse, not better, despite three decades of ‘enlightened’ policy and massive government expenditure. This book still has its uses.