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同路人語 580 成為真正的澳洲人 周偉文

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1850年澳洲發現金礦,大量華人擁入,數十年之間,華人人口佔澳洲人口達11%。華人以低工資及低消費在澳洲生活,社會上不少人認為這些華人礦工,對其他人的工作構成威脅,並且對社會經濟沒有貢獻,漸漸引來民族主義的興起,推動了各州居民成立聯邦政府,守護本地人權益的運動。1901年澳洲聯邦成立,首先立法要求移民者必需懂英語,開啟了白澳政策,直到上世紀七、八十年代,華人人口減少到約1%。在這期間,澳洲華人吃了不少苦頭。

白澳政策自然是種族歧視,但華人卻沒有省視促成這政策的,正是大量華人移民沒有亦無意願去融入澳洲主流社會。可以說,這些華人只是生活在澳洲的中國人,在這裏賺取大量的澳洲資源後,帶到中國,而不願意成為真正的澳洲人,當時有澳洲人稱這為黃禍。要是同樣情況發生在別的國家,例如大量日本人來到中國,把中國的一切都拿回日本,中國人都會全力反抗,中日戰爭八年抗戰就是這現象下的歷史。

今天,澳洲擁抱多元文化,重新接納世界各地移民,令到我們可以來到這一個美好的地方,建立自己的家。每年1月26日的澳洲日,提醒了我們澳洲不止是我們生活的地方,而且更是我們及下一代的將來,融入澳洲社會。成為真正的澳洲人,是這一個社會接納我們的基本要求。

今天,世界各地不少華人帶著財富、專業、技術及各種經驗來到這一個美好的國家。要重新開始自然是並不容易,打進主流社會要付上更大代價。有人會看到中國經濟的發展給澳洲的華人很大的空間和機會。是的,我深信如此。不過我們不要忘記,除非我們不以這地為家,只當自己是一個過客,不然的話,對我們長遠發展來說,成為真正的澳洲人,把澳洲的利益放在首位,去貢獻這一個國家,是為我們及下一代能在這裏安身立命的最佳選擇。

 

 

Becoming a genuine Australian       Raymond Chow

Since the influx of Chinese to Australia at the gold rush time, in a matter of decades Chinese represented 11% of the national population. Because they used to work at low pay level and spend the minimal, to the mainstream society this influx was a threat to their interest. Rising nationalism urged for counteracting policy at the federal level. In 1901 the new federal government kicked start the ‘White Australia’ policy requiring all new comers to know English. By the 70’s and 80’s Chinese population dropped to just 1%. Those were the bad days for the Chinese.

‘White Australia’ policy was racism; but we can’t deny most Chinese’s reluctance to integrate themselves into the mainstream society has been part of the cause. Many of these Chinese are just here earning money to take home; local Australians did not see them as genuine Australians but as ‘Yellow Peril’. The same will happen in any other country; say if an influx of Japanese came to take possession in China such as in the Sino-Japanese war, all Chinese will come up to fight against them.

To date Australia embraces multiculturalism and again accepts immigrates from all around the world to settle in this beautiful place for their future.The annual Australian Day on 26th January reminds us of our obligation to blend into the society, not just for our daily living but also for our better future. Becoming a genuine Australian is a prerequisite for us to be totally accepted.

To date many Chinese elsewhere are bringing in with them their wealth, expertise, skill and experience to this lucky country. To build up from scratch here is no easy job and to integrate into the mainstream society needs effort. Some people will see China’s economical leap can offer Australian Chinese much room and opportunity. Yet amid this we must remember unless we don’t take this country as our home but just for passing by, otherwise becoming a genuine Australian and taking this country’s interest as our priority to contribute would be our best deal to make our future generations nice and comfortable living here.

 

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