For as long as many Aussies can remember, the 26th of January is the public holiday reserved for downing XXXX Golds and the beloved Triple J's Hottest 100. Recent years, have seen Aussies standing up to disagree with the hidden meaning of Australia Day. January 26 was the day Australia was formally recognised by the British monarchy, raising serious questions about the lack of respect given to the traditional owners of the land and their suffering during this time.
1. January 27 - The New Hottest 100
Last year, Australia public radio station, Triple J made the announcement that their famous “Hottest 100” countdown would no longer occur on January 26, but instead the following day as a way to disassociate the radio station from the controversy surrounding Australia Day. As Triple J is a public radio station, funded by Australians, they do not promote any political agenda but felt that the countdown should be enjoyed by all Australians.
2. May 8 - M8 Day Mate
May 8th, or more commonly known as M8 Day, could possibly be an alternative date for the celebration of Australia. Australia is known for its love of mateship, so why not move the date that all Australians can identify with? Australian comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, from Axis Awesome has recently commented on this idea. “I say it every year but can we just have Australia Day on May 8? May8? M8! Maaaaaate”, he said. Australia also does not currently have any public holidays falling in May, meaning this change could breakup the work days nicely.
3. February 13 - Sorry Day
In 2008, former Prime Minister publicly apologised to the Indigenous people of Australia for the mistreatment of their people and culture over the years.If February 13 was to be selected, this would provide Aussies the Summertime celebrations they are so used to, such as pool party and backyard barbecues.
4. January 1 - The Federation of Australia
Although it clashes with the hangover you know doubt have after NYE, January 1st was a monumental day for Australian history, and would fit beautifully with celebrating the land Down Under! January 1, marks the six colonies of Australia coming together, and therefore creating the State Governments of each colony, whilst still remaining one nation as part of the Commonwealth.
5. August 27 - Sir Donald Bradman’s Birthday
I mean what more is there to say about this cricket legend? He was the greatest batsman of all time, with a batting average of 99.4%. This achievement has been compared to as one of the greatest achievements in any sport. So why not honour a true Aussie legend on this day? Cricket is in the blood of most Aussies and even if you don’t like cricket, everyone loves Bradman.
6. December 1 - First Day of Australian Summer
The first day of Australian Summer. If the day was to be moved, ideally it would remain in a Summer month in order for Aussies to celebrate outside, and would allow you to tick some items off your bucket list, like Fraser Island or the Great Barrier Reef.
7. April 19 - Advance Australia Fair is the National Anthem
Some are voting for the national day of Australia be changed to the day we said goodbye to “God Save The Queen”, and replace it with our own anthem. This day marked a big change for the People of Australia back in 1984, and should be recognised more. The day marks a pivotal moment that Australia removed itself from the rule of Great Britain, and formalised itself a nation of its own.
8. 27 May - Australian Referendum for Aboriginals
In 1967 a national referendum was held to remove racist and discriminatory terms from the Australian constitution. Prior to this change, Indigenous Australians were denied several basic human rights such as, the right to vote and be counted in the human census. Prior to the changes, their population count was added the animal population count. This referendum had the highest “yes” vote ever record, even still to this day with 90.77% in favour of the change. This day would make a fantastic alternative to the January 26 celebration.
As you can see there are a number of significant Australian dates that could be used to celebrate Australian identity. If there was to be a significant date change, it would be assumed that the name of the holiday would be changed as well. Currently, Australia Day still falls on January 26, but there are many who believe a change is just around the corner.