Prime Minister Scott Morrison on New Year’s Eve has announced that the second line of the song, Advance Australia Fair, has been changed from “Because we are young and free” to “Because we are united and free.” The change began on Friday.
Australia has changed one word in its national anthem to reflect what the Prime Minister calls the “spirit of unity” with the country’s Indigenous people.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison on New Year’s Eve has announced that the second line of the song, Advance Australia Fair, has been changed from “Because we are young and free” to “Because we are united and free.” . The change came into effect on Friday.
“It is time to ensure that this great unity is fully reflected in our national anthem,” he said, adding that Australia is “the most successful multicultural country in the world.” “While Australia as a modern nation may be relatively young, the story of our country is old, as is the case with many First Nations people whose bosses we respect and respect,” Morrison said.
“In the spirit of unity, it is right for us to make sure that our national anthem reflects this truth and we are grateful at the same time.” Australian Minister of State Ken Wyatt in a statement said he had been asked about the change and supported it.
Wyatt, Australia’s first indigenous person elected to be part of Parliament’s lower house, said the change to a single word was “small in nature but significant in purpose.” “It is an acknowledgment that the Aborigines of Torres Strait Islander originated at the age of 65,000,” he said.
The change comes less than two months after New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian expressed support for Indigenous Australians who say the national anthem does not reflect them and their history.
University of South Wales law professor Megan Davis, a Cobble Cobble woman from the Barrungam tribe in southwestern Queensland, has criticized the lack of consultation with Indigenous people about the change.
“This is a disappointing way to end 2020 and start 2021. It’s all about us, without us,” he wrote on social media.
Last month, Australia’s national rugby team, the Wallabies, became the first sports team to sing a song in a traditional language ahead of their match against Argentina.
The Advance Australia Fair was founded by Peter Dodds McCormick and first performed in 1878.