chapter  13
13 Pages

‘You can’t stop native people from drinking’?

Given that my account of the social tragedy of drinking is accurate then why has nothing been done about it? The Shire has had no desire to shut down the canteen because it is seen as a source of revenue with which they can do good works. They appear to be unable to step back and look at the situation objectively and consider that perhaps the structure of the Shire prevents them from doing anything about the canteen and that the community’s problem in the last analysis stems from the Shire.71 Furthermore, even well-meaning careerists appear to be trapped by a democratic ethic that prevents them from treating the Aborigines as ‘different’, with different laws and special norms to be applied to them.