“This Is Not Who I Am”: Red Symons Has Apologised For His Interview With Beverley Wang
The apology comes a week after his asked the podcast host whether she was "yellow".
ABC radio host Red Symons has apologised for his controversial interview with It’s Not A Race host Beverley Wang, admitting that he came across as racist.
The breakfast broadcaster was widely condemned on social media last week for his interview with Wang, in which he asked the podcast presenter a number of flagrantly inappropriate questions about her race, including “are you yellow?” and “what’s the deal with Asians?” He also appeared to defend the use of blackface on his old TV show Hey Hey It’s Saturday, because I guess when you’re on a roll you’re on a roll.
On Friday the ABC removed the interview and apologised, announcing that “a review of the editorial processes around this content and its use is in progress.”
This morning Symons offered his own apology. “The plan was to take on a serious topic, race and culture, and talk with Beverley about a range of related issues,” he told his listeners on ABC Radio Melbourne. “I came across as racist and I was wrong in the way I conducted the interview.”
“This is not who I am, but I acknowledge on this occasion I caused offence and hurt, not only to Beverley but also to our listeners. I offer my sincerest apologies. We need to talk about these issues, but be careful how we consider them.”
A number of media and political commentators have called for Symons to be reprimanded. Indigenous MP Linda Burney told the ABC that the broadcaster should face “very severe disciplining”, adding that his remarks were “clearly not acceptable”.