The weight of Australian history fell heavy on the shoulders of Governor General John Kerr, when he sacked an Australian Prime Minister in 1975. A Constitutional crisis upset the fate of the Country.
A young optimistic Australia wanted an end to the Vietnam war, The Whitlam Government ended it. Australians wanted access to education and health, so they got it.Women wanted equality so the amendments were made. Immigrants wanted rights so they had them and the Aboriginals wanted to be recognised as people and not fauna and so they were.
“Migrants have given much to Australia; Australia has given to little in return” Gough Whitlam
For conservative Australia it was happening a bit too fast and the ‘Old Guard’ clung to the past and their status. Sir Kerr had a lot of pressure from many influences. A book ,’The Falcon and the Snowman’; claimed American interference. As the Queens representative, she had to have been at the party. Malcolm Frazer of the Liberal Party was made caretaker, even though the people voted Labor, so they had to have been there. Whitlam stopped the ‘White only policy’, so that excludes a lot. One thing is for sure, once Kerr did the deed, they turned their back on him.
It took a few decades to close the gates that Whitlam opened. War is back, Education is expensive, Medicare is getting the chop. Women are losing ground and immigration has become a taboo subject. ‘This didn’t happen overnight’, it couldn’t, the 70’s and 80’s Generations were the heirs to the Whitlam Legacy. Cate Blanchett’s speech at Gough’s funeral summed up the gratitude.
The Blue Poles by Jackson Pollock was bought by the Whitlam Government and the general public, that were not privy to the value of Art, did not understand the decision. Today it is considered one of the most important Artworks of the Century and we own it. Culture is a valuable commodity, it attracts respect. An excellent leader understands cache. Ironically Pollack labelled the painting number 11.
We can return to the ‘dark ages’ of the Menzies days of a ‘White only Australia policy’ where we knighthood Monarchy, dissolve the middle-class, remove education , healthcare and equally or we can build on the remnant of Whitlam Legacy, a few generations removed and become THE LUCKY COUNTRY.
Public feed back
” Gough will never be forgotten for introducing Medicare in Australia” Melissa- USU
“Seemed like a lot of money at the time, he must have been a visionary regarding the Arts” Meridith Farmer
“Gough was a man of his word.” Joanie – Administration
“His influence was significant,my brother is Magistrate thanks to education” Kerry Teacher
” They wouldn’t have tried to sell it when he was alive, they waited a year” Sophie – Artist
” I never said I’m immortal …I do believe in correct language. I’m Eternal, not immortal’ quoting Whitlam , Robbie -Business Consultant