The Australian government has made some changes to the 143-year-old national anthem. In the second sentence of Advance Australia Fair says Australians are “young and free”. From the new year it became “one and free”.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison wishes to welcome Australia’s first residents, who have lived there for tens of thousands of years. After the arrival of Europeans in the 17th century, the original inhabitants were oppressed and discriminated against for centuries.
“It’s time for us to express our unity more clearly in our national anthem,” said Morrison. “As a country we may be young, but the history of our land is old, as are the stories of the first inhabitants whom we respect for good management.” He talks about a small change that adds a lot.
Morrison did not happen overnight. The adjustment has been discussed in advance with the prime ministers and governors of federal states, as well as with the presidents of both houses of parliament.
The announcement is in line with the growing appreciation of original residents. In December, the national rugby union team sang the national anthem in the language of the Eora people before starting the English version.
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