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Nareen Young compares Alice Springs crisis meeting to KKK movie on the ABC

An indigenous academic has compared Alice Springs’ community crisis meeting to a Hollywood movie about race-hate murders by the KKK in the 1960s American south.

Nareen Young, a Professor for Indigenous Policy at the University of Technology, Sydney, claimed on ABC’s The Drum, comments from some concerned locals were ‘appalling’.

Thousands of fed-up residents attended the Save Alice Springs meeting as the Outback town grapples with a crime crisis, amid threats by locals to sue the Northern Territory government for $1.5billion in compensation.

‘If you saw that room in Mississippi Burning, for example, Australians would say “how terrible, oh that’s terrible that happens there”,’ Prof Young said.

‘The vitriol and racism and lack of regard and respect for those people on their land while those people were living off the bounty of it was appalling.’

Prof Young also caused controversy last year when she bizarrely claimed then-Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s taste for white bread was somehow linked to his race.

Ms Young told The Drum the ‘vitriol and racism and lack of respect’ for Indigenous people by people living on their land was ‘appalling’

The Indigenous activist, who is of ‘Eora descendant’, also told the program that ‘how mob are treated on their own land, in their own town… is the impact of that land being stolen’. 

Mississippi Burning is a brutal 1988 film about the FBI’s efforts to investigate the disappearance of civil rights workers while the Ku Klux Klan attacks the local black population.

In February last year, Prof Young was labeled a ‘fruitcake’ by radio host Ben Fordham after she attacked Mr Morrison’s credibility over his choice of toast.

‘I think the comment about bread, white bread, this week was really interesting. Who eats white bread in this country? Anglo men,’ she told the program after Mr Morrison said he was a ‘white bread man’. 

The audience at the Alice Springs town hall meeting was comprised of terrified families, business owners and Indigenous leaders

The audience at the Alice Springs town hall meeting was comprised of terrified families, business owners and Indigenous leaders

ABC reporter Carly Williams (pictured) gave a live cross for the broadcaster's TV program and submitted a radio segment

ABC reporter Carly Williams (pictured) gave a live cross for the broadcaster’s TV program and submitted a radio segment 

On Wednesday the ABC’s reporting of the emergency community meeting in Alice was criticised as biased after its morning new program AM reported it was dominated by ‘white supremacists’.

The audience at the town hall meeting was comprised of terrified families, business owners and Indigenous leaders.

Alice Springs has been widely reported to be experiencing a crime wave that would shock most Australians.

Official NT police statistics huge jumps in the numbers of domestic violence incidents, assaults and property crimes in 2022 compared with the previous year.

Footage taken by locals in the town regularly shows young men brandishing weapons such as machetes and axes, especially at night in the town.

After the Prime Minister visited the town last week, the Northern Territory Government instituted alcohol restrictions banning alcohol takeaway sales on Mondays and Tuesdays, with sales limited between 3pm and 7pm on remaining days.

A snap review by the NT government also recommends alcohol bans in central Australian communities, including the town camps in Alice Springs.

Despite many perspectives aired, the ABC’s segment featured only people who slammed the meeting as ‘racist’, including one who said it was a ‘scary’ ‘white supremacist fest’.  

‘It was really a disgusting show of white supremacy… It was really, really disappointing,’ one woman told reporter Carly Williams.

Alice Springs in the Northern Territory has recently descended into chaos with locals now afraid to go to sleep in fear of home intruders

Alice Springs in the Northern Territory has recently descended into chaos with locals now afraid to go to sleep in fear of home intruders

The Prime Minister recently made a short visit to the town where he announced new alcohol restrictions

The Prime Minister recently made a short visit to the town where he announced new alcohol restrictions

‘It was scary to be in that room.’

Another told the program: ‘Tension and violence and anger in the room was palpable and it was clearly all around white supremacy and the safety of white people in this town – and that is all that was being considered.’

Yet another described the meeting as ‘bizarre’ and ‘dangerous’, claiming the dangers were posed by ‘white people have a choice to live here’ not by ‘vulnerable Aboriginal children’.

During a live cross on ABC TV, Williams said ’emotional’ people were ‘leaving early and streaming out of the convention centre’.

Just one interview was aired during the report.

The woman said: ‘They could be putting that $1.5 billion into dealing with the causes of the crimes.. Instead they want to take punitive approaches… It’s a total white supremacist fest in there – and I can tell you – it was scary.’

Alice Springs Mayor Matt Paterson has called for the ABC report to be retracted

Alice Springs Mayor Matt Paterson has called for the ABC report to be retracted

Other locals offered different portrayals of the meeting.

‘I am so proud to see the number of locals giving their time and support to help bring change,’ local business owner and lifelong resident Garth Thompson posted on Facebook after the event.

‘I’m proud to be a local here in Alice Springs, the community coming together tonight was a showing of what is possible in our amazing town!’

Meanwhile, 2GB host Ben Fordham blasted the national broadcaster on air on Wednesday.

‘Out of the thousands of people who attended the meeting, we only heard from one person in that report – a woman who had left early,’ he said.

‘We didn’t hear from the terrified locals or the worried mums and dads – we only heard of claims of racism from a woman who walked out [of the meeting] – someone who did not represent the whole mood in the room.

‘And there were no examples given of the so-called ”white supremacy” – no quotes, no footage, no audio.

‘We didn’t hear from any of the concerned locals, they didn’t play any of the comments from inside the hall – I’m not sure if [she] was inside – that was not clear from her story.’

Fordham said the AM segment was ‘even worse’ than the TV report.

‘Their coverage of the meeting was reckless and ruthlessly one-sided,’ Fordham said.

‘They ignored the issues…And just turned into a fight between black and white. And IF racist comments were made… what were they? And where’s the proof?’

Alice Springs Mayor Matt Paterson called for the broadcaster to retract the story, saying the report ‘couldn’t be further from the truth’.

 

 

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk



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