Australian Lawmakers Slam 9-Year-Old Who Didn't Stand For National Anthem

A nine-year-old schoolgirl in Australia refused to stand for the national anthem to protest alleged institutional racism. File

"The reason why I don't sing it or stand is because - Advance Australia Fair means advance White Australia", Harper told the Courier Mail.

"And I have never seen a nine-year-old or anyone around that age stage a political protest with the wording of the national anthem; this is clearly her parents' doing".

On Wednesday evening, Nielsen appeared on The Project with her dad Mark to talk about her decision.

Harper's protest was in light of her belief that the song doesn't do justice to the contributions of the aboriginal peoples of Australia. "Everyone should proudly sing the national anthem, but the issue is she is sitting in protest on behalf of father and mother".

African-American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos created a stir in the Mexico City Olympic Games in 1968 when they defied the "non-political" nature of the Olympics and took a public stand against racism at their awards ceremony while the United States' national anthem was being played.

Staff at the school are said to have demanded that she stand or asked her to leave the building, however Harper has refused to do either and said she feels "the best option" would be for her to remain in the assembly hall, but be allowed to sit.

"It's about who we are as a nation, it's part of us".

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk yesterday insisted it was a matter for the school, the student and her parents to solve.

"Here's a young girl who could have simply mouthed the words ... but she pointed out that she didn't believe in the lyrics, she didn't accept the contradiction, so she's going to make a statement in her own way so I say congratulations to that young girl", Mr Watson said.

"It says we are young, but we're not young if we count the Indigenous Australians, who were here for over 50,000 before the British colonised Australia".

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Her parents insisted they had no influence over their daughter's actions, however a number of politicians weren't convinced.

"I just totally applaud her for taking a stand for what she believes".

Harper Nielsen, a student at Kenmore South State School in Brisbane, chose to protest against Advance Australia Fair, saying it was not inclusive of indigenous Australians.

'Here we have a kid who's been brainwashed and I tell you what, I'd give her a kick up the backside, ' the One Nation leader said.

"I'm angry about this ..."

Queensland Liberal National politician Jarrod Bleijie echoed Hanson's sentiments.

What do you think about a 9 year old refusing to stand for the National Anthem in school?

Harper was handed a school detention over her peaceful protest, with critics claiming she showed a lack of respect for not only the rules of her school, but of her country of origin.

Harper's father, Mark Nielsen, on 9 News called his daughter a "very courageous young person" for taking a stand.

Nevertheless, infuriated right-wing cultural warriors such as Mark Latham, are demanding the anthem be made compulsory in schools and are treating Nielsen's actions as some sort of crime that needs to be punished.

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