Friday, May 22, 2009

Advance Australia (always)

The debate about whether "Advance Australia Fair" or "God Save the Queen" would be played at the Opening Ceremony of the Melbourne Commonwealth Games hit a raw nerve with everyday Australians during February and March 2006.

M2006 organisers indicated there was no obligation to play the British national anthem at the Opening Ceremony. If the Queen is the Queen of Australia what problem could she have with the Australian national anthem. To play anything other than "Advance Australia Fair" would be a direct challenge to Australia's national identity.

As the debate advanced, political leaders and the Australian's for Constitutional Monarchy (ACM) began talking about a compromise position whereby both anthems could be played. If there's one thing you never compromise it's your identity.

Our national anthem should be the only anthem played during any formal proceedings.Some monarchists, such as the ACM were embarassed with the prospect of only Australia's national anthem being played and warned Australians that the rest of the world would think Australian's were disrespectful and rude if the British anthem were not also played. They were proven wrong. In typical Australian style, the organisers stood strong on the issue of the anthem and played only "Advance Australia Fair", while also following through on their plan to play some bars of "God Save the Queen" while singing the Queen "Happy Birthday". It was a clever and uniquely Australian celebration about which all Australian's can be proud.