Juuuuuust when you think things are looking up in the world of Advertising, some bloody idiot at Banjo went and said something so racist and stupid I genuinely think they must have been in the middle of a stroke.
So like. Okay. This woman was having an interview with them, right. And one of the interviewers made some crack about not hiring her as there’s too many ‘brown people’ there already? Or something? And that sitting across from that many ‘brown people’ in a meeting or whatever would make a client feel uncomfortable?
I mean holy shit, y’all. I’m genuinely starting to get scared for my future if these are the sorts of people in positions of power in the industry. In recent months I’ve kinda decided that I’m going to use the fact that I’m a middle class white dude with opportunity coming outta my ass to try and do something to address inequality where possible. The more I read stories like this one, the more I’m concerned that I’m going to be laughed out of a room by suggesting something too ~left wing~ in a creative meeting. And that makes me sad.
Actually, it’s funny to be writing about this now, as I really feel like it speaks to something we don’t like to admit in Australia: we’re a bunch of bloody racists. Earlier in the week I was left reeling when a drag queen back home in Adelaide dressed as Beyonce and performed on stage, complete with darkened skin and makeup. The worst part – nobody I spoke to in Adelaide understood that this was blackface. Showing it to my classmates, they were shocked and immediately pegged it as such.
I was thinking that it must just be some small-town ignorance, but if behaviour like this is happening in places like Banjo, what’s the real story? Why the fuck are we like this? The defence from Banjo was essentially that it was ‘just a joke’. When asked about the blackface, the queen and their friends maintained it was ‘just a dark tan’. If we can’t even recognise racism when it’s literally parading around on stage in front of us, how are we ever going to improve? When do we stop being ‘larrikins’ and just become straight up dickheads? Is there even a difference?
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go complain some more about this on Twitter.