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Banning climbing Ayers Rock/Uluru does nothing for Aboriginal reconciliation

Banning climbing Ayers Rock/Uluru does nothing for Aboriginal reconciliation
Julian Tomlinson, The Cairns Post, November 9, 2017

Already in response, other Aboriginal advocacies are calling for more natural landmarks to be closed to non-Aborigines, such as Mt Warning in northern NSW.

Closing The Rock to climbers will likely set off a domino effect of similar exclusion orders around the country.

Locally, entry to Mossman Gorge is controlled by the Kuku Yalanji people. They say entry needed to be managed to prevent damage by visitors.

The same can’t be said for the hardy chunk of sandstone in Central Australia. Instead, it’s being closed for “cultural reasons”.

In the Daintree, the State Government is looking at increasing the role of Aboriginal culture in managing the area. This includes limiting entry to “sacred sites”.

Those proposing closures say indigenous law should trump the law of the land.

For instance, chairman of the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park board of management at Ayers Rock, Sammy Wilson, said of the native people: “Anangu have a governing system but the whitefella government has been acting in a way that breaches our laws.”

This is absurd and divisive.

Read the remainder via the link above.


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A pictorial response to arguments against climbing Ayers Rock

A pictorial response to arguments against climbing Ayers RockIt's too dangerous Group of women aged 19-70 climb Ayers Rock as part of the 1957 Petticoat Safari. This was prior to the chains being installed. Since the 1950s over 6,000,000 people of all ages have climbed the rock. In that time there have been a reported 36 deaths mainly heart attacks to older men, not acclimatised to the heat of central Australia. If you are fit and healthy and stick to the marked path climbing Ayers Rock is an exhilarating adventure but a decidedly low risk activity.

Here's Arthur Groom's take on the climbing options: extract from I saw a strange land
Various writers have described Ayers Rock as difficult of ascent, when in reality it is a trained mountaineer's job on the east-south-east corner, a rough and steep scramble up at least two places on its southern side, and nothing else but a strenuous and spectacular uphill walk on its western side It’s a Sacred Site, climbing is disrespect…

The Ban on Climbing Ayers Rock is Immoral and Illegal

The Ban on Climbing Ayers Rock is Immoral and IllegalQuadrant Magazine have placed my recent article online outlining reasons the ban on climbing Ayers Rock is immoral and illegal.

Claims that Aborigines never ascend the monolith are false and the highly sacred nature of the route a recent invention. The cultural-heritage significance of the climb to both Anangu and millions of non-Aboriginal visitors is something that should be celebrated and maintained, not discouraged and condemned.

Read the Article at Quadrant.
“In the realm of ideas there has been no better publication in Australia over the last fifty years than Quadrant magazine.”
— Former Prime Minister John Howard