For more than five years the Australian government, first under Malcolm Turnbull and then under Scott Morrison, has been largely silent on the Indigenous Voice to Parliament and the way it would be achieved.
Mr Turnbull brushed the question of a referendum to change the constitution aside. He argued people weren't ready. He also worried that if a referendum was held and lost it would scar the national psyche and cause international embarrassment. He failed to ask himself how wonderful it would be if the referendum was put and won.
Scott Morrison was - if anything - even more disinterested than his predecessor. He was more than happy to drop the question of the voice into the lap of his very capable indigenous affairs minister, Ken Wyatt, and then fail to provide him with the prime ministerial support needed to get things moving.
Well things have changed. Australia has a new government led by a new Prime Minister who isn't too timid to attempt seven impossible things before breakfast. As a result the silence on how to put the question of the Indigenous Voice to Parliament to the Australian people ends at the Garma Festival in Arnhem Land today.
Prime Minister Albanese, who made the implementation of the Uluru Statement From The Heart a key plank in the ALP's election campaign, is announcing his government will be running with a "KISS" model. In other words "keep it simple stupid". He proposes the referendum question should be as simple as: "Do you support an alteration to the constitution that establishes an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice?"
That voice would be able to make representations to the government on matters relating to Indigenous people. The Parliament would have the power to legislate the composition, functions, powers and procedures of the voice.
Mr Albanese, like most intelligent and empathetic Australians, sees the question of the Voice and, subsequently, a Makarrata (treaty) as a moral question; not a legalistic or bureaucratic one.
He is right to hark back to Paul Keating's Redfern speech and to ask: "How would I feel, if this were done to me?"
How would the average non-Indigenous Australian feel if, after centuries of forced dispossession, followed by segregation, then assimilation, and finally an approach combining all three with more than a touch of benign neglect thrown in for good measure, they were told that despite having a culture dating back up to 60,000 years and a complex relationship with this land that is only beginning to be understood, they would continue to be rarely seen and never heard?
While there are many who will continue to dismiss the proposed Voice and treaty as empty and useless symbolism they could not be more wrong. The loudest opponents of the Voice are those afraid of the tales it may be used to tell.
Although one obvious weakness of the Labor government's modest proposal is that future governments would seem to have the power to legislate changes in the way the Voice is constituted and how it operates, one would hope that the weight of public opinion would make this a very "courageous" choice for any future conservative government.
While it is true the Voice is not a universal panacea that will automatically put children into classrooms, more food into pots or reduce the incidence of alcohol-fuelled domestic violence in Indigenous communities, it is not meant to be.
As Mr Albanese has said: "Australia does not have to choose between improving peoples' lives and amending the Constitution. We can do both - and we have to".
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