Edward Gough Whitlam 1916 – 2014

Australia has lost a great Prime Minister and a great statesman with the passing of Gough Whitlam. Even his political enemies and detractors hold a grudging respect for this man who was a giant in both stature and influence. His family and friends must surely be proud of a life well lived. My condolences to his children and grandchildren.

The legacy of his short time in power during the early seventies is a testament to his inspiration and ideology. His Labor government was the instigator of land rights for indigenous Australians, the Racial Discrimination Act, the end of the White Australia policy, multiculturalism, free tertiary education, free health care, environmental protection, just to name a few.

He wasn’t perfect, as few of us are, but he didn’t shy away from his convictions when it would have been politically expedient to do so, and our politicians of today could do much worse than to follow his example. My advice to those who fear our current government is slowly eroding many of the progressive social policies that Gough Whitlam and his government enacted is to “maintain the rage”.

Peter Rowney
Lemon Tree Passage

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