A recently-elected Australian Senator has referred Queen Elizabeth II as a “colonizer” during her swearing-in ceremony
Indigenous Australian Senator Lidia Thorpe made headlines as she referred to Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II as a coloniser and swore allegiance reluctantly while taking the oath of office as the recently elected lawmaker on Monday.
The 96-year-old Queen is Australia’s head of state and Greens Senator Thorpe resentfully swore allegiance to the queen by raising her right fist in a Black Power salute as a mark of protest.
Thorpe said, “I sovereign, Lidia Thorpe, do solemnly and sincerely swear that I will be faithful and I bear true allegiance to the colonizing Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.”
She was then rebuked by the chamber’s president, Sue Lines, “Senator Thorpe, Senator Thorpe, you are required to recite the oath as printed on the card.” Thorpe then had to redo her oath of allegiance in the Senate after prefixing the Queen as a “coloniser”.
After reciting the pledge as required, Thorpe posted a tweet saying, “Sovereignty never ceded.”
Sovereignty never ceded. https://t.co/OowLrlUApy— Senator Lidia Thorpe (@SenatorThorpe) August 1, 2022
Australia was a British colony for over 100 years. During the period, thousands of native Australians were killed. The country ultimately gained de facto independence in 1901 but has never become a fully fledged republic. In 1999, Australians narrowly voted against removing the queen, amid a row over whether her replacement would be chosen by members of parliament, not the public. According to several polls, most Australians are in favour of being a republic, but there is little agreement on how a head of state should be chosen. There was a row over whether the queen’s replacement would be chosen by members of parliament or the public.
Lidia Thorpe, a Djab Wurrung and Gunnai Gunditjmara senator with Australia’s Green Party, called the country’s symbolic head of state, Queen Elizabeth II, a colonizer while taking her oath of office pic.twitter.com/phS9lUcsDp— NowThis (@nowthisnews) August 2, 2022
The issue was again brought to light at the last election when republican Anthony Albanese was elected prime minister. He quickly appointed the country’s first “minister of the republic.”
Albanese informed CNN, “I do support a republic. Our priority this term is the recognition of First Nations people in our Constitution.”
- Staff Reporter