Had a conversation about the status of Aboriginal people in Australia with G, a Somali woman who works for a NGO (non-governmental organisation). She shrugged and said that in Somalia there is a tribe who are like the 'untouchables' in India. She said that each country has its own 'untouchables' and yet each country points the finger at other country's injustices. I agreed at the time but thinking about it, I think it's different in Australia. Aboriginal peoples lived there with many different language groups and tribes. They only became third world citizens of a first world country since colonialism. I don't know the belief system around the untouchable tribe in Somalia but in India, through Hinduism, there is a belief that the next incarnation will be better - there is a place for them in the country's system. So I guess I feel that it's only ok (if it's ok at all) if the status is indigenous, I mean if it comes from the culture itself.
But I don't know - maybe it's not better. Maybe it's not different. I can not accept that it's ok for Aboriginal people to be 'untouchable' just because there are 'untouchables' in many other countries.

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