While I feel it is terribly wrong that the British stole this great land mass of what we know as Australia from its local inhabitants and yes owners, the Aborigines, it is apparent that it was not Terra Nullius. (bad sentence construction. Forgive me. I am on a roll) But I was born here, my parents were born here, my grandparents were born here and my great grandparents were born here, and most of my great great parents were born here. It is my country by an act of history.
I don't like exhibitions of pride in public, but I suppose I do take some quiet pride in being lucky enough to be born in this country, where an F18 Hornet flies over our city for public entertainment and not to bomb us.
One area where we are really on the world stage, in nearly all the old colonies that went on to become The Commonwealth, is with cricket, the gentleman's sport.
In my mind a perfect day of cricket is sitting on the perimeter of an English village cricket green in a deck chair while watching a local game where all players honour the sport. The sky is blue with fluffy white clouds floating past. I have a gin and tonic at hand and a platter of cheese and biscuits to nibble. The sun makes me sleepy. I doze off, only to be woken by a hearty round of applause from the local team supporters applauding a really good take of a wicket by the visiting team. Is that not what cricket is about? Apparently not.
I feel shame. We can no longer speak of moral rectitude. We can no longer stand on our high horses. Our soap box has been kicked from under us. We will never again be in a position to lecture others about sportsmanship. A junior player was told to cheat by the Australian cricket captain and the lad followed orders.
Clearly that they thought they could get away this indicates firstly that they are stupid. Secondly that they are cheaters. Thirdly, they have brought great disrespect to Australia.
The general and the soldier have been well caught out. Resign in disgrace, and they are falling as I type. But why did they think they could cheat and get away with it? In such cases I look to management and the culture of the workplace.
It may be 10 years before Australia ever does well in cricket again, but sack all the players, the captains and coaches, and roll the board of Cricket Australia who created a culture where the players stupidly thought they could get away with such actions when they are constantly monitored by cameras.
There are no heroes in Australian cricket at all, unlike in France whereby a particular French policeman substituted himself for a hostage who was under threat by an accused Moslem terrorist. The policeman was subsequently killed. Arnaud Beltrame is a real hero and I reckon he would have been a pretty fine sportsman. You certainly can't say the same about Cricket Australia or any of the complicit players who have brought such shame on the nation.