Once, a coward lived in a village. Even the smallest sound would scare him. One day the royal messenger announced in the village “The king has asked every young man of the kingdom to join the royal army. It’s an order. Everybody must follow it.”

The coward was also forced to follow the royal order. So he too left for the city to join the royal army.

On the way the coward passed by a large and tall tree. Many crows were sitting on it and making a lot of noise. Loud noise of the crows scared the coward. He stopped due to fear. After standing for a few moments, he moved forward to go on but the crows again started to make a noise. Once again, the coward’s mouth went dry with fear. He shivered in fright and in shaky voice he cried, “Yes. Go on. Make as much noise as you want to. But I know you still cannot eat me up!”

The coward was so scared that he thought the crows would eat him up. Actually he did not have the ability to join the royal army. A man must do only the task for which he is fit.


Albert Namatjira

In 1957 the first Aboriginal Australians to be granted full citizenship were Albert Namatjira and his wife Rubina. It’s sad that despite all the rhetoric and his considerable fame and fortune, they were denied permission to buy land and build a house, which is what they wanted to do. Sometime when I look at his fabulous water colours I think about them living in squalor with their meagre possessions on the outskirts of Alice Springs.
Even today, sometime fame and fortune is not enough. Maybe the real measure is better opportunities for everyone. Opportunities to better our lives and better opportunities for our children. Or if it isn’t, what is?
When I vote this election I’m going to consider what opportunities are on the table for all Australians. Our country, with all it has going for it, should be the land of opportunity.