By Sukhmani Khorana
When Prime Minister Tony Abbott recently declared that Indigenous people living in remote communities were making a ‘lifestyle choice’, he was rightly rebuked by both sides of politics for undermining Aboriginal sovereignty and spiritual connection to land. What was seldom brought up, however, was how his curious phrasing assumed that there is a norm that the ‘choice’ was deviating from. This led me to wonder about a hypothetical scenario where all of the nation’s Indigenous citizens walked the white-laced path – mortgaging an over-priced suburban house, working a 9 to 5 job in the big smoke, commuting to workplaces and shopping centres. Would that help us ‘bridge the gap’? Would that also be the end of race-based prejudice? Chances are they could still encounter casual racism and institutional stasis.