We Stole Your Children, Tried to Eradicate Your Culture & Homogenize Your People…We Said “We’re Sorry”, So Let’s Live & Let Live over Dirty Poms

14 Sun, 2010 § 7 Comments

When Rachel talks about coming early, I don’t even raise an eyebrow.  It’s Rachel after all, & we all know where she’s going.

Not this time.

She was talking about premature celebration — of a holiday of our own choosing that is.

What normally comes to mind when you think of holidays?

family. friends. culture. food. community. happiness.

These are beautiful aspects of life worth embracing & celebrating; sometimes though, it’s important to acknowledge the forces that strive to destroy all of these.

Dave [who lived in Australia for a time] shared one such story that really struck me & has stayed with me since.

For over 100 years — even into the late twentieth century — children of Aboriginal decent were removed from their families by the Australian government in an attempt to “breed out the color”.  These children became known as the “Stolen Generation”.

Some were whipped & beaten.  They were “educated” — many were trained as domestic staff — & not allowed to speak in their native tongue or celebrate their indigenous culture.  Children with more white characteristics were “adopted” out to white families [usually as a servant].

A moving & amazing true story about the courage & strong will of one young girl who was taken from her mother during this era is told through the movie Rabbit-Proof Fence.  The film follows three girls as they walk for nine weeks along 1,500 miles of the Australian rabbit-proof fence to return to their families.  It is one of my favorite movies.

National Sorry Day is held on May 26th to express regret over the historical mistreatment of these people.

It is a strange holiday to have come to mind, especially with all the current upcoming festivities lingering in the air.  What’s wrong with me?  Seriously, why couldn’t I talk about something more fun?

As Thanksgiving approaches, I can’t help but think of the atrocities that have occurred in my own nation & throughout the world.  These are mistakes of the past though, right?  People don’t behave this way now.

After listening — & re-listening — to the audio book Blink, I am enthralled by the author’s section on the subconscious biases, associations & prejudices most of us have.  We don’t even realize these effect the way we behave because we don’t realize they even exist.

Some prejudices are more obvious & pretty blatant.  Since moving to Arizona, I have really been taken aback by the obvious anti-immigration tone that exists here.  The irony seems to whisk by unnoticed: didn’t this land once occupy Mexican territory before they handed it over were chased out by the good ole settlers…uh, remember the Alamo?  Oh wait, I think I’m supposed to use that phrase to fire up your patriotism not acknowledge yet another human tragedy.

Yes, yes.  I’m an idealist.  “Imagine” by John Lennon always gets me, & it absolutely embodies my naive hope for the world.  My intention wasn’t to get so serious on you — & I know that’s not the point of Project Tasteless — but…

Sorry I’m not sorry.

My drink creations — that’s right, creation x 2 — are inspired by the simple Aboriginal flag [& one nation’s willingness to “own” & overcome its cruelty].

Black represents the dark-skinned man [or the night sky depending on interpretation] walking on the red earth beneath the yellow sun.

yellow. red. black.

Got it.

Licorice-Laced Pomegranate Cider

I just had to use pomegranate juice for my drink, but I wondered if I could make it warm like apple cider.  It had to be a little special too.

I hope you like black licorice.  Panda is my favorite brand.

  • 8 oz 100% pure Pomegranate juice
  • 1-inch piece of Panda black licorice, optional [but not really optional ;)]

Combine in a small pot & slowly bring to a simmer — don’t let it boil.

Carefully pour into a cup [or other drinking vessel — like my mason jar?], slide in a slice of lemon, add the rest of your licorice stick & sip this steaming cup of happiness.

The anise-flavor is only subtle but really does make it extra special.  The citrus adds a refreshing splash to your breakfast accompaniment.

I enjoyed mine with Baked Pumpkin French [Cranberry-Walnut]Toast.

[I still haven’t been able to talk Daving into make damper — traditional Australian fry bread for me. :(]

But this breakfast really hit it.

AND

This drink owns a pair of black stilettos & knows how to kick it up a notch.

I had big plans of layering inky black Luxardo Passione Nera Sambuca over Pomegranate juice — or over pomegranate Sambuca depending on the mood — & lighting it up [you know, the flame would represent the sun]…but Passione Nera was no where to be found. 😦

I decided to get dirty & turned to a more natural, earthy source for that black licorice punch.

Apparently adding intriguing texture by making dishes “dirty”  is all the rage among top chefs in the cooking world.  They are abandoning sauces & instead using fine powders, crumbles, dusts & dirts crafted from cookie crumbs, dried mushroom powder, dehydrated beets & anything else that can be dried, ground or crumbled.  Why couldn’t my drink be dirty?

  • ¼ tsp Anise seeds, ground
  • ~4 oz [½C] Pomegranate juice
  • vanilla Vodka
  • Panda licorice stick
  • 1 slice of Lemon

In an 8oz glass, pour pomegranate juice over your ground anise seeds.

Top the glass off with Vodka [to your liking].

When lighting it up doesn’t quite work

just “dress it” & get your drink sip on!

Quite tasty…that is of course supposing you are a fan of black licorice [which I’m discovering is rare — I don’t get it!].  However, even Dave who hates black licorice said it was “sweet enough I could forgive the licorice flavor.”

~

What holidays or “national days” really speak to you?

What are your favorite drink mixes?  Ever invent your own?

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§ 7 Responses to We Stole Your Children, Tried to Eradicate Your Culture & Homogenize Your People…We Said “We’re Sorry”, So Let’s Live & Let Live over Dirty Poms

  • Amazing post. I barely have words to leave this comment. You hit the issue(s) on the head and then gave us an option to take the sting out of the stupidity of some of our forefathers. Bravo.

    • Allie says:

      Thank you Jess! 🙂 I think you are giving me too much credit, but this really is an amazing story & important issue. I hope people do work to make literal changes in the ways we treat others.

  • Sarah says:

    This is absolutely amazing. I think you did a brilliant job. I’m an American living in Australia, and the more I learned about the Stolen Generation when I first moved here, the more shocked I was. I arrived just a few months before Rudd said sorry. Now, we are on our way to another referendum to amend the constitution to acknowledge Aboriginal people. Last time it was voted down (long story, but it was voted down by many Aboriginal people as well as white people).

    This was very creative and inspired! I found your blog through the Project Tasteless Challenge that you won. May you win this one too 🙂

    • Allie says:

      Thank you Sarah 🙂 I’m so glad you stopped by. It’s amazing that you live in Australia — which part? My husband & I have thought long & hard about moving there…but it seems like it’s not quite as easy as it once was…but maybe we’ll work it out one day. Many countries have an ugly past, but Australia is such an incredible & beautiful place…& seems to be taking such strides forward. I hope you enjoy it & are happy where you are.

  • […] It also pairs perfectly with my special Pomegranate Cider. […]

  • Sarah says:

    I live in Western Australia – the forgotten state 🙂 I do love it here, though I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about it when I first got offered a job here (I had never even visited). I’m now in the process of trying to get a spouse visa/permanent residency, and I can confirm that the immigration process here is not easy! My work visa was easier to get, but still a big pain in the neck. Since 9/11, I think it’s harder to (legally) immigrate in any country.

    I do think Australia is trying hard to remedy its ugly past, but it’s not an easy issue. How do you reconcile two cultures that are so very different? How do you help people to strive for their best, when their idea of ‘best’ is completely different than your own? I think people want to ‘fix’ the situation, but throwing money at it isn’t working, and no one’s quite sure what will work.

    • Allie says:

      Exactly. My husband lived in Australia for a time & definitely felt that sense of differences. I think we get so caught up in helping other peoples live their “best” instead of just letting them live. I don’t know what would work — I’m not politically savvy — I just wish individuals would work on treating each other with love & respect, especially when faced with differing cultures…then maybe that would resonate through to politics.

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