David Leyonhjelm has cast doubt over whether Aboriginal people were the first Australians
The hairless Senator is quite right. Australia's original pygmy race survived into the modern era in the jungles of Far North Queensland -- particularly in the Kuranda area. I was sitting in an outdoor cafe in Kuranda in 2004 when a very short dark man walked right past me. A full discussion of the evidence is here
SENATE crossbencher David Leyonhjelm has cast doubt over whether Aboriginal people were the first Australians.
His comments came ahead of the release of a parliamentary committee report today that will give the green light to a referendum to recognise indigenous people in the constitution and remove sections that could allow racial discrimination.
Senator Leyonhjelm says he is a “black and white anti-racist” and agrees with removing the two references to race.
However, the Liberal Democrat says he needs to be persuaded on the argument that Aboriginal people should be recognised as the First Australians.
“There may have been people in Australia prior to the Aborigines,” he told reporters in Canberra, adding that there were some anthropologists who argued that case.
That view was based on the Bradshaw or Gwion Gwion rock paintings in Western Australia that were distinctly different from other Aboriginal artworks.
Senator Leyonhjelm said several serious anthropologists had made the argument, but could not name them or their credentials.
“I could (name them) if I checked it out,” he said. “You’ve asked me at a door stop, I can’t off the top of my head. “But if there is any doubt at all, why would you put history in the constitution?”