We were up early this morning for the dawn service, remembering our family members (a great grandfather fought in the Boer War as a Light Horseman and grandfather fought in World War II, was captured and ended up in Changi and working on the Burma Railway), and many others who fought for us to have the opportunity to live with freedom and in peace.
Sometime after the service as we watched kids play at the beach and chatted with others we had met at the service about the significance of the day, I saw a post from a friend on Facebook.
She had checked in at a Disney movie with her family and was talking about how great the movie was. I momentarily felt something rise up inside me, but I couldn’t quite place my finger on what it was. Later I discussed it with my other half.
This particular friend comes from a line of new Australians, Italians who came to Australia in the 1940’s and worked hard to build a life for themselves and their families here. These are good, kind, hardworking people with whom I can find little fault.
However, missing from this family history is any connection to the significance of this day to our country and honouring of the young men that left home to fight in wars for our freedom.
This particular friend (whom I love dearly) is a prolific poster, keeping us up to date with every minute detail of her and her families lives on Facebook, but on this ANZAC Day there was no mention or acknowledgement of the significance of the date.
After letting it stew for a while, I finally decided the feeling I felt was resentment. I felt resentment towards her for posting Disney movie ‘fluff’ in the early morning making no mention of the implication of this day to this country. It was evident she simply did not feel it was of any importance.
My question for you all… did I have a right to feel this way? I have no issue with immigrants of any kind (indeed my other halves family are immigrants to this great nation) so that’s not my issue in case your mind first wanders there.
Did I have a right to feel resentment towards a family that didn’t honour such an important day to Australia, who didn’t take the time to stop and consider the men who fought to give her and her family the opportunity to live in such a great nation?
Or, is she entitled to be removed from the gravity and emotion of it all because of her lack of family connection to the history?
Please weigh in, I would love to hear from you.