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Friday, March 14, 2008

Racism: Alive and Well Everywhere

Photo of Bethany Langdon from Auntie Beeb

A group of Native Australians are alleging that they were turned away by a backpacker hostel because of their skin colour. Apparently, they were told to leave because they were "scaring other foreign guests." Bethany Langdon, the Native Australian in the photo above, might take legal action against the hostel, which is located in Alice Springs. The managers of the hostel have denied allegations of racism.

The group of Aboriginal women and children had travelled to Alice Springs from the desert community of Yuendumu. Within half an hour of checking in to the Haven Hostel, they alleged they were thrown out because they were black, following complaints from Asian tourists.
"I merely asked the manager why couldn't we stay - they said that it was because of the colour of our skin and they didn't like it," said one of the women, Bethany Langdon.
The hostel's website describes the resort as "stylish and super clean", where guests are afforded "the most friendly welcome possible" &mdash provided, of course, that they have the decency to be light of skin.

The management's statement in response to the charges of racism, added a little insult to injury. The hostel management said the hostel caters for "international backpacking tourists" and was not suitable for the Aboriginals, and that managers made every effort to arrange alternative accommodation.

However, apparently there have been other such incidents, although the article doesn't clarify whether these incidents involve the Haven Hostel of Alice Springs, or general mistreatment of the Aboriginal people by white Australians.

Racist schmucks are everywhere. Help stamp them out.

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At 12:47 AM, Blogger Chuck Butcher said...

I hate this kind of crap, I linked you to drive what interest I can. Shining a light on it makes it a little less likely to occur.

At 8:17 AM, Blogger Fixer said...

I think the only way we can stamp it out is through education. Thing is, too many are education-averse.

At 9:38 AM, Blogger ThePoliticalCat said...

Looks like the local and national governments are advising the injured people to sue. I hope they get a nice big settlement.

The hostel management are exactly the kind of people who would have turned Mary, Jesus, and Joseph away from the door, saying, "I'm sorry, we don't allow your kind in here." Pathetic.

At 5:31 PM, Blogger BadTux said...

Let us not forget that Australia had an *official* government policy of "White Australia" until 1973, and quietly abandoned it only because they feared getting the sort of shitstorm that started falling on apartheid-era South Africa around that time. For many years it was literally illegal to be brown in Australia. And even today, if you're brown, don't bother applying for immigration -- it's a white's only country club, though East Asians are also allowed now (as long as they're wealthy -- money covers over all sins in the end!).

- Badtux the History Penguin

At 11:07 PM, Blogger ThePoliticalCat said...

It wasn't that long ago that the Australian Foreign Minister said (insofar as East Asians are concerned), "Two Wongs don't make a White."

I was a mere sprog at the time, but I remember it well.


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