Ey, cunt! Where’s mah tree, cunt! You done tore down my best tree so bad, ya cunt!
Gimme money, ya cunt, that was a magic tree!
The bulldozing of a sacred tree for Aboriginal people to clear land for a highway has sparked anger in Australia.
Protesters have long camped at the site in Victoria to defend culturally significant trees, including some where local Djab Wurrung women have traditionally gone to give birth.
But state authorities cut down the Djab Wurrung “directions tree” on Monday, the activists said.
Officials defended the felling, saying the tree was not on a protection list.
In a deal last year, Aboriginal landowners negotiated with the Victorian government to save around a dozen of 250 “culturally significant” trees from destruction.
However, activists independent of the Aboriginal land group have remained at the site near Buangor to try and save more trees.
Victoria Police said they had arrested 25 protesters on Tuesday who refused to leave the site as land clearing work continued.
Footage posted by activists on social media showed officers forcibly dragging people away, and some protesters who had climbed into the trees.
Authorities said the tree removed on Monday was a fiddleback thought to be about 100 years old, but protesters said it was in fact a yellow box species. They estimated it was 350 years old.
Many condemned the news of its destruction.
“Absolutely gutted and feel the pain of our ancestors right now,” tweeted Lidia Thorpe, the first Aboriginal senator in state parliament and a Djab Wurrung woman.
We live in a cartoon reality.
This “magic tree” gobbledygook is obviously just another hoax.
It’s the Abo version of “Wag the Dog.”
All the Abos do is huff gasoline and pass out on the road. They don’t have a religion, they don’t have any sacred trees. Someone just told them they could get money from whining about a “sacred tree,” because someone knew that white people are soft and gullible enough to believe that a bunch of gas-huffing primitives have things like “sacred trees.”
A mixed race “Abo quadroon” woman is literally out there saying they got this idea from the plot of the movie Avatar.
So if you liked the Avatar film, maybe you’d appreciate how it feels when your sacred ancestor trees are torn down by the very government who want to Treaty with us. Absolutely gutted and feel the pain of our ancestors right now ? pic.twitter.com/sWt3k36jb3
— Lidia Thorpe (@lidia__thorpe) October 26, 2020