President’s Message – March

BAC President monthly message

Frank Salter  8 March 2022

 

Dear BAC members,

Let me begin by acknowledging Australia’s historic nation and its possession of all of our land and waters.

Before getting to the main item, I have two announcements.

Firstly, I urge BAC members to donate to charities such as Red Cross which are helping people in the aftermath of the flooding disasters on the Queensland and NSW coasts.

The second announcement concerns some new awards from our friends at the English Speaking Union (Victoria). If you need financial help with research or advocacy related to the Anglo community, take a look at the range of awards being offered by the ESU at:

https://esuvic.org.au/content/awards

A round of Project Grants (major and minor) is currently open, with closing dates in March. Some information is also available on the BAC Facebook page.

Also, coming up on 31 April is the deadline for the ESU’s Young Leader Bursary. Information will be posted on our Facebook page in due course.

Now for the main item:

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has unleashed emotions not often seen in the West since the Second World War. The overt military invasion has elicited patriotic feeling among Ukrainians and sympathy among Westerners, including Australians. When they see tanks and men in uniform and strafing aircraft, humans “get it”. They understand that a foreign army is entering the country, and know that somehow it is bad, that it should be opposed.

Not so cultural and demographic threats. In our mass anonymous societies, cultural change that affects only a segment of the population, for example school students, is often overlooked by the broader public. Immigrants who are approved by the government and who enter our suburbs peacefully do not trigger anywhere near the same response as military invasion, even when the culture or immigrants are destined to transform beliefs, values or the identity of the nation as a whole. Though the delayed effect resembles the aftermath of invasion, these changes can fail to elicit the will to resist.

There is a relatively small number of people who are sensitive to cultural change and rising ethno-religious diversity. Perhaps they are higher in ethnocentrism, are natural warriors easily triggered to defend their people, or perhaps their brains generate more realist visions of the future and therefore can foresee the negative effects the transformation will have. Perhaps they are less optimistic than most, and their melancholy helps them see further.

Whatever the psychological and sociological causes, such patriots are society’s canaries down the mineshaft. They are the first to suffer from lost traditions and rising diversity. They seek to warn their fellow citizens of what is coming, though the best of them distinguish temporary irritations from existential threats.

One such visionary was Enoch Powell in Britain, who saw as early as the 1960s that Third World immigration was leading to endemic ethnic conflict.

Another visionary has been our own Alan James and Reg Watson, both intellectual warriors for our people.

Alan James has been a BAC member since the early 1990s. He has been a giant in the effort to warn his fellow Australians of threats to their historic Anglo identity. In 2013 he published his valuable book, New Britannia: The rise and decline of Anglo-Australia, which all BAC members should read. This is simultaneously a history of Australia from the perspective of its founding British-derived pioneers and a warning to their descendants. Alan has also celebrated our culture and folkways, going back to pre-Christian Europe. For example, Alan has long acknowledged early Anglo-Saxon spirituality, part of the organic spiritual belief of the indigenous peoples of Northern Europe.

Alan’s accomplishments are impressive in their scope and long duration.

The last Committee of Management meeting, on 13 February, voted unanimously to honour Alan with life member of our Association. The Committee also created a new award, the Alan James BAC Advocacy Award, to recognize Alan’s life-time of efforts to defend the rights of Anglo-Australians and the nation they created.

The Committee motion was as follows:

Honouring Alan James

Motion (President): That we honour Alan James for his extraordinary service to the British Australian Community and to our people by:

(1) Awarding him Life Membership of the British Australian Community with an accompanying certificate to be presented at a ceremony; and

(2) Establishing an annual award to be titled The Alan James BAC Advocacy Award.

Citation

Since the late 1980s Alan James has been an active and influential member of the British Australian Community (BAC) both under its present and original name, the United Kingdom Settlers Association (UKSA). He served as the Association’s Secretary from 1990-93 and subsequently as the BAC’s Publicity Officer for more than two decades.

In that capacity, he helped to organise St George’s Day celebrations on the steps of the State Library of Victoria and Britfest events in Frankston which attracted several thousand attendees in the late 1990s. He also promoted the UKSA and then the BAC to the Australian public through radio promotions and by advertising in British pubs in Melbourne and in publications such as the Army News and Quadrant.

He edited the BAC’s print journal Endeavour from 1995 to 2012, creating a professional publication that represented the British community in Australia. He also established the first BAC website and the BAC’s first Facebook group.

Alan initiated a Commonwealth government-funded survey which investigated why a proportion of British migrants to Australia returned to the British Isles.

In 1999 Alan initiated the proposal to change the name of the Association from the UKSA to the BAC and broaden its mission, composition, and activities to transform it from a British migrant group that serviced the interests of members to one that advocated on behalf of Anglo Australians, both native born and immigrants.

To develop the BAC’s broader mission, Alan established a committee to investigate cases of vilification against the British community in Australia and co-ordinated representations objecting to Anglophobia in the media.

In his many roles over several decades in the BAC, Alan James has been an unswerving advocate for the Anglo community in Australia.

It is fitting that we now formally recognise his contribution.

[End of Citation]

Alan was presented with a framed certificate of Life Membership of the BAC on 8 March, by our Treasurer, Rob Furlan. The Award carried the citation quoted above.

The first recipient of The Alan James BAC Advocacy Award was also decided at the last Committee of Management meeting. Based initially on Alan’s recommendation, the Award went to Reg Watson, a long-term member of the British Australian Community. Reg has represented the heritage of Tasmania, for example by working to recognize the island’s early British settlers. Reg has conducted extensive historical research, on topics ranging from the Risdon Cove settlement, prominent bushrangers such as Brady and Cash, to more contemporary Tasmanian history. He founded the Lieutenant John Bowen Association to recognize Bowen’s leadership of the first British settlement of Tasmania. He has also fought to national issues, such as the retention and development of Australia Day. The BAC honours Reg Watson in recognition of his work representing the interests of British Australians over a span of more than five decades.

The latest ESU newsletter carries Reg’s biography.

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