House debates

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Statements by Members

Australia: Aspirations and Commitment

1:33 pm

Photo of Ed HusicEd Husic (Chifley, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Parliamentary Secretary to the Shadow Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

The times that test us all are not the times to test the trust between ourselves, because it is at this point we seek a stronger embrace of the many around the things we hold dear in this nation. At this moment our values and way of life are challenged by those who hope to see fear and distrust weaken faith in ourselves and our values. This challenge does not just test us collectively, it tests us to push beyond the individual discomfort that may on occasion arise from the unfamiliar and in doing so we grow individually and as a community.

It should not slip from recognition that those that came to these shores to make a new home feel a deep debt of gratitude. They seek to repay this debt by building upon what we have found and benefited from, and their children inherit and honour that debt not just for the sake of material prosperity and self-advancement but to become advocates of a grander division in this country, benefiting from the inclusion derived from a shared commitment to freedom, the rule of law and respect for others.

In the brief time I have been humbled to be here, I have sought to appreciate that differences should not define or divide. It has been an honour to work with those of you who feel the same. Together, let us make this place a source of strength for others beyond this place. It was a guardian of our national values, Sir John Monash, who remarked that one of the many attributes of a successful leader is a personality that 'must be of a kind which inspires confidence in others'. His past words are a course for our future activity.