Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Gough fought the good fight

Vale Gough Whitlam, former Australian prime minister and hero, not only of Australia, but to all true progressives everywhere, who died this morning aged 98.

"It’s time" Gough told us. And because of him, because of his life and his legacy, it’s always time. Gough Whitlam offered us a vision of what Australia might be -- a modern, multicultural nation, where opportunity belongs to everyone.

Free university education and universal healthcare. The Racial Discrimination, Aboriginal Land Rights and the Family Law Act. Protection of the Great Barrier Reef from oil drilling.

Gough ended conscription, the death penalty and he made Advance Australia Fair our national anthem. He put our suburbs at the centre of national debate.

Gough Whitlam spent his entire political life reaching for higher ground – he redefined our country and changed the life of a generation, and generations beyond. He inspired us all in some way and he will continue to inspire us.

At times like this, as he knew, we need an Australian Head of State to lead non-partisan national mourning and celebration of a unique life and contribution. Gough was a great Australian who made a more independent, confident, forward-looking Australia.
Gough Whitlam fought the good fight to create a republican Australia, and the Australian Republican Movement will continue that fight in his honour.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith”. (2 Timothy 4:7)

Vale Gough Whitlam AC