- Letter Writer
- History - pre-Federation
- RAN Ships
- None noted.
- June 1993 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
I do not see how the quotes from Collins and Phillip are particularly helpful. Why could a convict colony not become “the most valuable acquisition that Great Britain ever made” and be “a regular colony”?
As a history teacher I can say that few if any texts still give the jail problem as the only reason for establishing a colony in N.S.W. It is still generally seen as the main reason, but other causes were given as long ago as the late 1970s.
The other issue I wanted to discuss was the comments about the names of the Anzac class frigates. I support the names Arrernte and Warumungu, and as an ex R.A.N.R. officer do not regard myself as an “arty crafty activist” (whatever that means). One thing I did learn in the navy was when you made a mistake, you admit it, correct it and get on with the job. The navy will look pretty silly if members of the tribes concerned turn up during these ships’ careers and say “You can’t even spell our name correctly”. It is intellectual snobbery to dismiss the views of a group of relevant people simply because they have no written language. The navy stated when the names were announced that it was meant to be a contribution to reconciliation with aboriginal Australians. To then turn around and say “Yes, but we don’t care how you spell your own names and are going to do it differently,” does not seem to be consistent with that aim.