So Sorry Debbie by Juilee  Pryor

This picture of a lovely laughing child was taken some years ago now while I was driving out from Meekathara in the WA central desert on my way towards the Gun Barrel Highway. At a tiny camp called Wiluna I stopped to look for some art and come across this family sitting in their car in the shade. This child’s sweet face has stayed with me all this time but today, this momentus day, is the first time I’ve felt like I could display it. Little Debbie and her family are impoverished by anyones standard but they clearly have love and strong family bonds. This child represents what we that is we white Australians are saying sorry for. Sorry that we couldn’t see value in our fellow Australians. The first settlers here in this wide brown land. Sorry that we took little children away from their family and their country and people. Only a relatively short time ago this child and her mother would have fled at my approach fearing my whiteness and the dreadful things we whites perpetrated upon them in the name of the law.

So from the bottom of my heart Debbie I would like to say Sorry. Sorry Sorry indeed I am very sorry. And I hope that now we can all go on together in peace and trust and mutal respect. For all the little Debbie’s white and black and brown and pink and yellow lets all step forward together hand in hand and welcome whatever it is that comes next……..

this image was taken with an old Olympus SLR using Kodak Gold 400 asa film and with a 50mm lens


  • Judith Oppenheimer
    Judith Oppenhe...about 7 years ago

    beautiful beautiful child, and lovely thing that happened today in Australia. I’d like to see reparations to all wronged people everywhere, but then, who’s asking me.

  • I think its a question we have to ask ourselves somehow…..

    – Juilee Pryor

  • taji
    tajiabout 7 years ago

    im sorry

  • me too…thanks taji

    – Juilee Pryor

  • jemimalovesbigted
    jemimalovesbigtedabout 7 years ago

    Woo Hoo for moving forward and evolving….. I can’t believe it took until 2008 but now its a time to heal and move into a more understanding future. It makes me cry while I write this. I can’t imagine the sort of relief that the stolen generations and those closely related to them must feel. I feel much more happy to be a white Australian today. Lets hope that we never make the same mistakes again.

    Beautiful image by the way Juilee.

  • thanks jemimalovesbigted…. its a huge day hey….. and it feels good….:)

    – Juilee Pryor

  • rochelle
    rochelleabout 7 years ago

    Great photo. I absolutely agree with your comments. I spent the morning on the banks of the Torrens listening with many others to Rudd’s words and for the first time in a long time I felt proud in being an Australian.

    Good day!!!

    cheers rochelle

  • good one rochelle…. I got up and watched in on the telly and that was petty cool ….. Rudd may not have the poetry of language of Keating and Whitlam etal but he meant it and that was apparent…. it was a good thing to witness.

    – Juilee Pryor

  • helene
    heleneabout 7 years ago

    It’s a promising start – lets hope we continue to acknowledge the damage and find ways to redress the balance. She’s lovely Juilee.

  • thanks Helene she is a sweetie hey…. just a little kid happy to be there with her mum…

    – Juilee Pryor

  • belair
    belairabout 7 years ago

    lovely photograph Jules and today it shines!!

  • thanks peter…. little debbie shines and thats what its all about hey…..:)

    – Juilee Pryor

  • Mariann Kovats
    Mariann Kovatsabout 7 years ago

    Great picture.

  • Marco Britti
    Marco Brittiabout 7 years ago

    Gorgeous snap Juilee!!

  • thanks marco she was a lovely child. and this is what we were stealing.

    – Juilee Pryor

  • Paul Vanzella
    Paul Vanzellaabout 7 years ago

    sensational image – love the colour tone!

  • thanks Paul as for the rich warm tone….. have I ever mentioned film? mmmm film… is good.

    – Juilee Pryor

  • Arthur Carley
    Arthur Carleyabout 7 years ago

    im Proud to be an Australian This Day and Age but also feel Sorry for our past

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