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A d m i s s i o n     I m p o s s i b l e

During the past decades, the changing attitudes of Australians towards non-British immigrants into this country have led to the reversal of the White Australia Policy. The need for more population in Australia started after World War 2, and a planned immigration scheme created an English-speaking society.

Under the White Australia Policy, only the British and whites were accepted. The supply of British immigrants was inadequate, so Australia allowed Displaced Persons from Southern Europe to enter. Jews were omitted and English was not needed, but were chosen for their skills and fair-skinned appearance. Under the government? control, the immigrants agreed to work in jobs that Australians did not want.

In the 1950?, the spread of Communism made Australians wary of Asians. The strengthening of immigration policies and the dictation test deliberately rejected the Asians and non-whites. Dictating 50 words in a language they did not know; it was like 'committing suicide'. Accused of being spies, every Asian in Australia had records filed by the government in case they need to be deported. Although these Chinese had trades with Asia, it took 15 years to get their citizenship compared to 1 year for a British immigrant.

The deportation of the Chinese had grabbed the centre of attention, and so Australia moved another step to change its policies by inviting Asian students to study here and abolishing the dictation test. The decision to accept these people would definitely alter the cultural composition of Australia. By 1960, Australia was going through a social change; as many young people began to protest and challenge the government policies.

The Vietnam War had an influence in changing Australia's immigration. Australia has maintained a good relationship with America, but seeing them helping the Vietnamese and accepted colour; Australia welcomed refugees after the war. Many perished when the immigration authorities tried to sink the boats carrying Vietnamese refugees to Australia. The Australians saw the pain and suffering of these people and realised they should help them. The White Australia Policy ended in 1975, and as a result, immigrants to Australia could come from anywhere, including non-whites.

In the past, we have rejected race, colour and religion of others and trying to become a separate country. Today, the attitudes towards multiculturalism are positive, as they have contributed in our daily social lives. Pauline Hanson's views on foreign immigrants being compulsory to know English before living in Australia; I think it is a racist attitude and is just as bad as the dictation test. I think Australians have feared Asians because they have not been recognised, but if we live together, the outcomes would be simpler than what we expected.