Day 166: An open letter to Red Symons

Day 166: An open letter to Red Symons

Friday, June 16, 2016

“This is not who I am”?

No, Red, I’d suggest that’s exactly who you are: a racist. You just don’t want to be stuck with the label.

Perhaps I’m being unfair? Let me explain.

Your association with the Skyhooks and Hey Hey It’s Saturday made you royalty to the Australian public, but today you established yourself as a culturally unenlightened dinosaur, a proud remnant of the White Australia Policy.

Don’t think for one moment you can lose that label just because it doesn’t suit you: an apology delivered with perfunctory apathy will not do. You need to do more to show people like me otherwise.

But I’d rather you didn’t. When you berated Beverly Wang about her country of origin, its proximity to Asia, and your indifference to which languages are spoken in Taiwan, you sounded like every racist bigot I’ve ever encountered in my life. And those people, for the large part, were unapologetic if not proud of their position.

Rather than deny it, I’d rather you just took ownership of the label. Anything less seems cowardly and disingenuous.

Or maybe you just realised the person who approves your pay cheques, ABC Managing Director Michelle Guthrie, happens to be Asian.

This doesn’t end here. Not for us.

 


About today’s photo: I am a few days behind on my blog on account of being terribly ill (this story first appeared on my feed on Friday, and Red’s grovelling apology came today on Monday the 19th of June). I haven’t eaten in three days, but this story got me out of bed and raving at my poor wife about it. 

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