From the article:
“The Facebook post by DJ Neill Andrews, who owns Wellington’s Famous nightclub, sparked outrage.It read: “Just because we don’t let groups of creepy Indian rapists into the club doesn’t make us racist, they also don’t buy alcohol.”Probably so they can be sober enough to tie up the sack and lift the body into the back of their hybrid taxi, while wearing oversized leather jackets and sports shoes.”Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy said she was disgusted, and urged people to boycott the Courtenay Place nightclub. ANZ, New Zealand’s biggest bank, has said it will no longer hire the DJ. Andrews, who told the Herald on Sunday that he regretted his outburst, deleted the December 30 post from his Facebook page, but not before onlookers circulated it. It polarised opinions on blogs and internet forums, where some readers were appalled but others supported Andrews.”
I’m feeling a bit jaded and cynical about this bullshit right here. Without having to read the opinions on blogs and internet forums that support Andrews. They will say that, it’s free speech they will also say that he’s just telling it like it is i.e. saying hard truths that we don’t want to hear. That is bullshit. If you think that the statement “All Indian men are rapists” is an uncomfortable truth you are a racist. If you think that that is not what Anderson is saying, I think you are a little deluded. In the statement above he admits to racially profiling Indian men at his club because he believes them to be rapists, that is literally what his words say. You can argue that it is exaggeration or overstatement but even so it is still racist as fuck.
We like to think of ourselves as so enlightened in New Zealand, racism isn’t a problem here, not like in Australia, people don’t abuse people with racial slurs on the street or on buses. Just because our brand of racism is a little less confronting doesn’t mean that it isn’t there or that it isn’t damaging. If this particular debacle goes the same way as Paul Henry’s racist bullshit, Andrews will be humbled for a while but like a cockroach he will be back, because in the long term, once things have blown over, the ‘non-racist’ (scoff) public don’t give a damn. Episodes like this shine a light on just how deep racist attitudes in our society run.
I think it is also useful at this time to talk about how race informs “creepiness” As a woman who occasionally enjoys partying I have been harassed by what feels like hundreds of men in my lifetime. They have been of every age culture, colour and creed. There is no one type of guy who I can determine is more likely to harass me, except perhaps the creepy old white dude in the corner (there is always one). As a woman it is tiring to constantly have to deal with unwanted attention, but it is important that we talk about the racial elements in inherent in determining creepy behaviour. As I have said before creepiness is often a feeling one gets when someone continues to violate your boundaries after you have set them. Creepiness can also be related to a lack of understanding of unspoken social norms and cues, there by making immigrants more likely to come off as creepy as they are not as privy to these unspoken rules in this context. Creepiness can also be related to racism in that it is affected by how we perceive or the intentions we ascribe to behaviour. In an American context African American males are frequently perceived to be threatening because of racist stereotypes, not because they are doing anything threatening. In a similar way, I have anecdotally noticed that Indian men are more likely to be perceived as creepy than white dudes even when they are behaving in exactly the same way.
I am not in the business of attacking women who are completely justified in shutting down or calling attention to people who are behaving inappropriately, that is not what this is. This about interrogating our assumptions and perceptions to see if internalised racism is in fact playing a role.