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Aboriginal hip hop artist explains his controversial lyric ‘I hate the Anzacs’ and slams the ABC

Aboriginal hip hop artist explains his controversial lyric ‘I hate the Anzacs’ as he slams the ABC for refusing to let him perform the song on Q&A

  • Aboriginal hip hop artist called out performative cultural diversity in the media 
  • Ziggy Ramo claimed he was censored and used as a diversity checkbox by ABC
  • He wanted to perform song with the lyrics ‘I hate the Anzacs’ but wasn’t allowed
  • The 25-year-old explains the song comes from ‘black armband view of history’ 

An Aboriginal hip hop artist has claimed the ABC ‘censored’ him by refusing let him to perform a song that contained the lyric ‘I hate the Anzacs’.

Sydney-based musician Ziggy Ramo said the national broadcaster declined his request to play ‘April 25th’ during Monday night’s episode of Q&A.

Ramo claimed the ABC had used him as a ‘diversity checkbox’ and only had him on the show because he is Indigenous.

‘The song I initially was going to perform was called April 25th and this is a song that I was not allowed to perform,’ the 25-year-old told the panel. 

‘I was basically censored in the fact that the ABC said that it was not appropriate.

Ziggy Ramo (right) claimed the ABC had used him as a diversity checkbox and only had him on the show because he is Indigenous.

‘Me sitting on this panel ticks off a box for the ABC that’s cultural diversity, but if I’m not able to express my perspective, is it performative or is it actual culture diversity?’ 

Host Hamish Macdonald explained to the panel that the song contained the lyrics ‘I hate the Anzacs’. 

Former Nationals Leader Barnaby Joyce interjected and said he would ‘never defend the ABC’ but you ‘have to be careful what you say because you can insult people’.

Ramo explained the meaning behind the lyric at length.  

Hip hop artist Ramo explains meaning behind ‘I hate the Anzacs’ lyric  

The issue I had with the censorship is that in this song, I say I hate black culture. I hope black people die. I say I hope that we tear down Indigenous culture. I say that about 20 times, right? 

And the whole reason of comparing Indigenous Australia and April 25 is the fact that I have gone to Belgium when I was 17. I went to the Scott’s College for my last three years on academic scholarship.

The principal and the founder of the college and his son died in service in World War I. So I had the privilege to go there, right, and celebrate and understand the sacrifice that people have laid down for this country. 

So the whole point of a song about April 25 is saying that I’ve seen this country recognise the sacrifices that have been made so that we could all sit here today. 

So if I’ve seen us be able to do that, for our non-Indigenous people and our Indigenous people like you said who fought in these wars in 1945, that the ABC is commemorating 75 years since the end of World War II.

Yet in 1945 Indigenous Australians weren’t even classed as citizens. My father was born before 1967. So my father wasn’t even classed as a citizen when he was born. 

The whole point of a song about April 25 and as soon as I say, after I say I hate the Anzacs, I say how wrong is that? How wrong is that, we pick and choose our history, we rearrange the facts? 

We fought for a country that didn’t see us as humans. We weren’t seen as humans in our own country. So the reason why I wanted to talk about this and in my art is that I want to celebrate the Anzacs and I do celebrate the Anzacs. 

I’ve gone to the other side of the world on Anzac Day to celebrate what our people have laid down for us. So if we’ve done that, we can’t just pick parts of our history that we want to recognise and bury the others. 

If in World War II we fought against genocide, yet we don’t recognise the genocide in our own country, that’s a double standard. So the whole reason why the song says, “I hate the Anzacs,” is to demonstrate that how outrageous is that? 

If we can recognise how outrageous that is, why can’t we recognise that on January 26? Why can’t we recognise that when we asked to raise the age from 10 because 600 kids last year were locked up and we’re 2% of the population. We make up 65% of those kids incarcerated. That’s 349. So if we can’t recognise it then, do we not understand?

 

Sydney-based musician Ziggy Ramo claimed he was 'censored' from performing his song April 25th on QandA on Monday because it contained the lyric 'I hate the Anzacs'

Sydney-based musician Ziggy Ramo claimed he was ‘censored’ from performing his song April 25th on QandA on Monday because it contained the lyric ‘I hate the Anzacs’

He released the album, Black Thoughts (pictured), on June 5 despite recording the entire thing five years ago

He released the album, Black Thoughts (pictured), on June 5 despite recording the entire thing five years ago 

Ramo said that he does not want people to think he doesn’t celebrate the Anzacs, but has travelled the world to celebrate what they did for Australia. 

Viewers flooded to social media to praise the musician for his ‘powerful’ views on the show, with many agreeing there needs to be more cultural diversity in organisations.

What an amazing young man. How articulate, accurate and passionate. Let Ziggy have the floor for the rest of the night,’ one user wrote on Twitter. 

Ramo said that he does not want people to think he doesn't celebrate the Anzacs, but has travelled the world to celebrate what they did for Australia

Ramo said that he does not want people to think he doesn’t celebrate the Anzacs, but has travelled the world to celebrate what they did for Australia

Ramo pictured left during a rally for Black Lives Matter in Sydney after the death of George Floyd

Ramo pictured left during a rally for Black Lives Matter in Sydney after the death of George Floyd

‘Ziggy is absolutely not pulling punches tonight. Powerful bringing it up so openly,’ another woman wrote.

‘I don’t know who Ziggy is, but geez that was powerful. Onya man,’ one man Tweeted.

‘Ziggy Ramo is letting some truth bombs off on QandA tonight. It might not want to be what you want to hear, but it’s no less truthful because of that,’ another said. 

He released the album, Black Thoughts, on June 5 despite recording the entire thing five years ago.

Viewers flooded to social media to praise the musician for his 'powerful' views on the show, with many agreeing there needs to be more cultural diversity in organisations

Viewers flooded to social media to praise the musician for his ‘powerful’ views on the show, with many agreeing there needs to be more cultural diversity in organisations

The album addresses colonial dispossession, systemic racism and intergenerational trauma but Ramo chose not to release it because he was worried it would not sit well with non-Indigenous Australians.

But after George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis on May 25 sparked a global Black Lives Matter protest against police brutality, Ramo released the album. 

He explained the circumstances surrounding the album in an Instagram post on its release:  

‘I wrote this album 5 years ago while I was hospitalized,’ he wrote.

‘I was in a dark space and on suicide watch. It was my obituary. I wanted to document my thoughts so that our stories could be heard after I was gone.

‘I never put it out because I knew as a country we weren’t ready to listen. I wish it was dated. I wish there was no need for it.’  

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk