LEARN FROM OUR MISTAKES
The recent culture of rewriting history concerns me. From wanting to posthumously promote Sir John Monash from general to field marshal, (which his era thought was not appropriate) to removing statues that people of the past perceived as icons.
Our past is our past, we can not change it.
I believe if we start altering our history, we are denying future generations the ability to reflect not only on where we came from and what societies of the past felt were important but the errors we as a society made.
I understand the concerns some hold, but I am worried, if we forget the path we have travelled, are we likely to forget the battle we have fought to correct the wrongs? Will we be likely to make the same errors in the future? Embrace our history, don't rewrite it.
Greg Adamson, Griffith
SUPPORT WIRADJURI LANGUAGE
Some weeks ago in a letter to the editor, I expressed my concern at the lack of action from our federal government in preventing Chinese buying up Australian assets.
My parting comment was that if this take-over by the Chinese continues, we should make teaching the Chinese language compulsory in our schools.
Recently I went to withdraw cash from an ATM and the first instruction button I was required to push was, "in which language did I wish to continue - Chinese or English".
There would be more First Australians in Wagga Wagga than Chinese, so why is there not a Wiradjuri language option?
Peter Dolden, Wagga
EDUCATION A HUMAN RIGHT
The federal government's proposed changes to university fees and funding will slam thousands of students with whopping 113 per cent fee hikes, and cut Commonwealth funding to the detriment of all.
The 'job-ready graduates package' involves a $700 million plus cut to teaching and learning. This will have devastating impacts for higher education across the country, including regional cities and towns like Wagga Wagga where university campuses are often the employment and cultural lifeblood of communities.
As one of the few career engineers in Parliament, the government's stated intent of seeing more students studying STEM is near and dear to my heart.
But I'm deeply concerned this package will simply deprive universities of the funds to deliver quality degrees - science, engineering or otherwise - while forcing thousands of humanities students to accumulate much more study debt which will take them decades to pay off. University staff are already going through a tough time, shut out of JobKeeper with as many as 30,000 jobs on the chopping block. Young people are bearing the brunt of the impacts of COVID-19.
Instead of investing in higher education and young people to ensure the success of our recovery from the pandemic and recession, the Morrison government is doing the exact opposite - cutting funding from universities and punishing students by shifting costs onto them.
Education is a public good and a human right. It is an investment not just in individual students but society as a whole. They must be publicly funded to deliver the best education. Let's make corporations pay their tax and make university and TAFE fee-free for all students throughout their lives.
Dr Mehreen Faruqi, Greens senator for NSW
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