Racism is alive and well at The Age

Why does this The Age article about a brawl in St Kilda have to keep mentioning that the brawlers were of “African appearance”? Is it supposed to help us by highlighting that people of “African appearance” are more likely to brawl so we can avoid them? Or is it supposed to help us identify the brawlers to police, because their “African appearance” is a unique identifying feature?

I note that the Age published an article about a different brawl in Melbourne Central a few weeks ago which doesn’t mention anybody’s appearance at all. The people in that brawl did not look like they were “African appearance”; surely that is just as newsworthy as the “appearance” of the St Kilda brawlers.

And just what the heck is “African appearance” anyway? When I did an image search for “Moroccan people” they looked very different to when I did an image search for “Malian people“, and that’s only two countries over! What about a person from, say, Andaman islands? What “appearance” would they be?

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Those whacky bisexuals!

I discovered this article (NSFW – there is a picture with half a nipple showing) by the Daily Mail about an incident in which part of artist/songwriter/musician Amanda Palmer’s breast was accidentally visible during a recent show.

The article is a pathetic piece of rubbish, and I’m not surprised the author hid behind the nom de honte “DAILY MAIL REPORTER”. For one thing, Ms Palmer has never been ashamed of her body and is more than happy to flaunt it to whomever is interested. I’m not sure she would be any more embarrassed by a brief nipple slip than I would be by an untied shoelace (for example, see her NSFW response to the article).

But I’m going to ignore on that, and focus on this little nugget printed towards the end of the text portion of the article. The pre-ante-penultimate sentence begins, “The bi-sexual singer also wore a pair of…”

So, why mention that she is bisexual? I looked at a bunch of other articles from the US Showbiz section of their website, and none of them mentioned the sexuality of the person being written about (note: although that last one about Jillian Michaels mentions her same-sex partner, they don’t go to the trouble of enlightening us as to whether she is lesbian or bisexual). Even this article, which refers to the fact that Darren Criss is playing an openly gay character (in which mention of Mr Criss’ sexuality may at least be justified in the context of the acting challenge involved in a straight person playing a gay person), doesn’t say word one about his sexuality.

So why this bolt from the blue, bearing such a burning bulletin of ballsy bisexuality?

Bigotry.

Look at those crazy bisexuals and the whacky things they do!

Their customs are different from us!

We should mock them and revel with glee at their embarrassment when their silliness backfires!

They didn’t mention where she gew up. They didn’t mention where she went to college. They didn’t mention what her parents were like. They didn’t even mention the fact that she is married. Amanda’s sexuality does not define her. Like all of these things, and more, it is just one part of who she is. Yet when pointing out all of her crazy antics and hi-jinks, the authore chose to remind everyone of that particular fact. Way to encourage bigotry and reinforce negative stereotypes, Daily Mail!