Oh my, is this a dud fauxpology.
The Daily Telegraph has audio from 2GB, which took a phone call purporting to be from one of a group of three young people photographed on Australia Day. They had a scrawled Australian map on their bellies with the inscription “FUCK OFF WE’RE FULL”.
Chris Smith: Still on this: you may have picked up the paper today, and certainly you would have heard our discussions on the programme yesterday, about those who were at Manly, at at least one location, who had written on their stomachs as they headed down the Corso, “NO WE’RE FULL.” And there were a couple of other individuals who had “LEBS” attached to that, etc etc. Which if it wasn’t borderline racism, it was close enough to it.
I’ve got one of those girls who was featured in the Telegraph today, who put that on her stomach no doubt, just calling into the programme. This is in the same light of those who behaved badly, I think that’s a fair comment.
Uh, Sharon, is it, from Cherrybrook, hello Sharon.
Sharon: Hi, um, how are you today?
Smith: I’m ok. Did you see your photo in the paper today, did you?
Sharon: Yes, I did read that today.
Smith: Tell us
[something is cut, possibly her talking about the “FUCK OFF WE’RE FULL” slogan]
Smith: Take that out. I want to keep that phone call on, if I can. Can I go back to you. You can’t say what you just said on the radio, which is why I’ve taken that out. But you said “EFF OFF WE’RE FULL”. Have you?
Sharon: Um, because we … we didn’t actually meant it, in … in a racist way at all? Yes, it was racist, and stuff, but it was for the peop – it – it – I don’t know how explain it. It wasn’t against anyone in partic – especially in Australia.
Smith: Do you wish you hadn’t done it, though?
Sharon: Yes I do.
Sharon: “Because, it’s like Australia Day, it was sort of bringing, like, it wasn’t a happy thing, it wasn’t, like, we were representing Australia, we should be representing it in a good way, not sort of in a racist way. Sort of thing.
Smith: Well, that’s spot on. Can I just also clarify something though. There are people in this country from foreign lands who don’t like Australia. They are among the minority. But we talk about them on the radio quite often. You understand, though, that the majority of those who come here from all lands, including probably your ancestors, have skills to offer, are productive, love this country, and would like you to help them assimilate. You understand that, don’t you?
Sharon: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, ummm…. um. [slowly] The three of us would ..really..like..to..apologise for that. We did not mean any offence at all to anyone, and we’d love to take it back. And we also, taking that picture, did not know that that would be going in the newspaper, and that also brings, like, the fact that it’s going around everywhere sort of thing? And I’d really like to apologise, and they feel exactly the same way, and yeah basically we’re just really sorry for that. And … yeah.
Smith: It’s a gutsy thing to say ‘sorry’. What’ve your family said?
Sharon: Um, my family haven’t seen it. Um –
Sharon: Yet. But um – I think that the [?] thing is, some people our age as well, well some of them actually agree with it, sort of thing? Which was also not, like, a great thing, but, um, it was more the older people who were taking offence to it, and we didn’t like mean to at all, so.
Smith: Alright. As I say, it’s a gutsy thing to say ‘sorry’. Hopefully Australia Day next year will be a completely different event. For you.
Sharon: Oh, yeah, absolutely. And we’d also like to say that we actually weren’t drinking, we weren’t doing anything, we’re actually only sixteen, and we…. yeah.
Smith: But you still shoulda known better.
Sharon: Yep. I know.
Smith: Thanks for calling in.
Sharon: OK. Thankyou.
I don’t know where to start with this fuckery.
Sloganeering “FUCK OFF WE’RE FULL” isn’t actually “bad behaviour”, but is just “in the same light”?
“We didn’t mean it in a racist way”?
“But not against an individual, so it’s ok”?
“It was aimed at people who aren’t in Australia right now, so it doesn’t really count”?
“The biggest problem with this was that we should only represent teh happy on Australia Day”?
“Only furriners who work hard and are productive and patriotic and assimilate are tolerable, because they’re Good Little Immigrants”?
“We’re really sorry we got caught”?
“We weren’t drunk, so it was ok”?
“But but it was really ok. Because the racist young folks around us agreed with us, and it’s just you fuddy duddy old folks who have a problem with racism. Racism is the new trend and the way of the future dontcha know. Get with the program”?
“This is all about your ‘gutsy’ personal journey”?
Confident guess: if she hadn’t been readily identifiable in the photo, this conversation would not have happened.
Second confident guess: No one wants or needs Sharon’s toxically-white assistance to “help them assimilate”. For fuck’s sake.