vacation movie review: Rabbit-Proof Fence

"Australia's aboriginal integration program of the 1930s broke countless hearts -- among them, those of young Molly (Evelyn Sampi), Gracie (Laura Monaghan) and Daisy (Tiana Sansbury), who were torn from their families and placed in an abusive orphanage. Without food or water, the girls resolve to make the 1,500-mile trek home. Meanwhile, a well-intentioned tracker is trying to return the girls to the authorities."

cultures die all the time, but when their death is forced, the noun "genocide" comes up. here a dominant, invading white culture is not pleased with the miscegenation between whites and aborigines and devise a plan to compel their progeny back into white society. the story is tragic and the fall-out from the "solution" to the "problem" will last more generations than if the "problem" had been left alone. the fall-out includes the Stolen Generations without family identity, only orphanage identities, orphanages not populated by orphans which makes them prisons, or concentration camps.
a short summary of the fall-out:

The report also acknowledged that in several cases the state took responsibility for children that were genuinely orphaned or in a state of neglect. Defenders of the removals, in fact, claim that mixed-race children were often severely neglected within Aboriginal communities. The evidence gathered also indicated a substantial number of cases where the care of the children after removal was extremely good. Nonetheless, the report condemned the policy of disconnecting children from their "cultural heritage". In the testimony of one Aboriginal; "I've got everything that could be reasonably expected: a good home environment, education, stuff like that, but that's all material stuff. It's all the non-material stuff that I didn't have — the lineage... You know, you've just come out of nowhere; there you are". [4]

Removed children were in most cases placed into institutional facilities operated by religious or charitable organisations, although a significant number, particularly females, were "fostered" out. A common aspect of the removals was the failure by these institutions to keep records of the actual parentage of the child, or such details as the date or place of birth. The report went on to note that "...the physical infrastructure of missions, government institutions and children's homes was often very poor and resources were insufficient to improve them or to keep the children adequately clothed, fed and sheltered." Incidence of sexual abuse were disturbingly high, overall 17% of females and 8% of males reported experiencing some form of sexual abuse while under institutional or foster care. [5]

The social impacts of forced removal have been measured and found to be quite severe. Although the stated aim of the "resocialisation" programme was to improve the integration of Aboriginals into modern society, a study conducted in Melbourne and cited in the official report found that there was no tangible improvement in the social position of "removed" Aborigines as compared to "non-removed", particularly in the areas of employment and post-secondary education. Most notably, the study indicated that removed Aboriginals were actually less likely to have completed a secondary education, three times as likely to have acquired a police record and were twice as likely to use illicit drugs. The only notable advantage "removed" Aboriginals possessed was a higher average income, which the report noted was most likely due to the increased urbanisation of removed individuals, and hence greater access to welfare payments than for Aboriginals living in tribal communities.


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