pebblerocker: A worried orange dragon, holding an umbrella, gazes at the sky. (Default)
[personal profile] pebblerocker
It was Anzac Day this week and the entire town is a sea of paper poppies and plywood poppies and crocheted poppies. Poppies on trees and poppies on churches and poppies on kindergartens.

Outside a childcare centre I saw a noticeboard which said "In lieu of Anzac Day..." and I had to turn back and read it, because that is not a phrase one expects to see in these nationalistic times. Could it be that this particular childcare centre is run by people who thinks glorification of war is an inappropriate thing to teach small children? Perhaps they were planning a celebration of international friendship and co-operation in lieu of Anzac Day? No, it turned out to be a request for parents to bring in photos of soldier ancestors for the children to stick on a commemoration wall, written by someone who thought "in lieu of Anzac Day" was a fancy way to say "for Anzac Day".

Ten or fifteen years ago we didn't have this sort of nationalistic fervour. I remember when Anzac Day was just something old people did, people who had lived through wars, and newspaper columnists worried about the dwindling numbers attending dawn parades and whether the whole thing was about to die out. It's very strange how things have turned around.

Date: 2017-04-27 08:27 am (UTC)
jekesta: Apollo on an alien world (Apollo)
From: [personal profile] jekesta
A similar sort of thing has happened with remembrance day over here. It used to be about actual remembrance, and sorrow, and 'never again' and nothing to do with glorification of war. But slowly as people who actually remembered war died, it's become some sort of victory parade and it makes me sick.

Date: 2017-04-27 09:06 am (UTC)
spiralsheep: Woman blowing heart-shaped bubbles (Bubble Rainbow)
From: [personal profile] spiralsheep
My local area has begun holding council-funded "St George's Day" events too, which aren't traditional, while they're cutting library services.

Date: 2017-04-27 09:11 am (UTC)
spiralsheep: Woman blowing heart-shaped bubbles (Bubble Rainbow)
From: [personal profile] spiralsheep
It's good to remember reality-based history. It's not good to be proud of war involving mass killing (or dying). I have an English friend who never knew one of his grandfathers who died at Gallipoli but my friend's response to his family history is to sing And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda every year on Remembrance Day, and not to glorify war.

Date: 2017-04-27 05:43 pm (UTC)
vera_j: (Default)
From: [personal profile] vera_j
Yes, things are changing. Everyone has big mouths here - but very few remember our fallen and heroes - just as if both Wars never existed or were only a computer game...

Date: 2017-04-28 02:14 am (UTC)
vilakins: (poppy)
From: [personal profile] vilakins
Do you think the big revival of it has been due to it being 100 years since? Part of it is probably also about us and Australia starting to be nations, and here anyway I've seen photos posted of the people who died, plus there've been memorials by each tree on Severn Street since before I came (probably 2014)*, and people at the cenotaph services seemed reverent about the dead rather than nationalistic.

* When I got here, I thought, "Wow, lots of traffic accidents on this street!" :-P

That said, we don't have a national day like many countries so maybe people want to make this one it.

[deploys poppy because has one]

Date: 2017-04-28 04:08 am (UTC)
quabazaa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] quabazaa
I'm uncomfortable with the tone as well, especially here in Aus where some people drink all night and then go to the dawn service. My family have never been big on the day because my grandfather who did serve asked us not to go. He never liked the posturing of people showing off their medals and no doubt he wouldn't like the atmosphere now. Even the ANZAC/Gallipoli exhibition at Te Papa felt weird to me, there was no mention of the Turkish who also suffered, it felt like it was glorifying our role too much and seemed very one-sided to me. I'm glad we remember and commemorate but I don't feel super comfortable with the way it's being done.

Date: 2017-04-30 10:17 pm (UTC)
quabazaa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] quabazaa

Yes exactly, I would love it to include the ordinary people as well, and all soldiers not just our own. I'm watching the TV show "The French Village" about a village in France during the occupation during WWII. It's fascinating and really gives a window into the lives of ordinary people during that time, though dramatised. I feel like it's a part of history we don't often learn about. Highly recommended!

On 28 April 2017 at 17:34, pebblerocker - DW Comment <dw_null@dreamwidth.org</p>

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