Kerri-Anne Kennerley Slammed As Racist During Fiery Debate About Australia Day On ‘Studio 10’
"Every time you open your mouth you're sounding racist."
Studio 10 host Kerri-Anne Kennerley has come under fire for comments she made on the program about sexual abuse in Indigenous communities, with guest panellist Yumi Stynes telling her “you’re sounding quite racist”.
The heated exchange came during a debate around the recent Australia Day protests, which attracted tens of thousands of people around the country. Kennerley criticised the protesters, and said they’d be better off “doing something positive”.
“Has any single one of those 5000 people [in Melbourne] waving the flags saying how inappropriate the day is, has any one of them been out to the outback where children, babies and five-year-olds are being raped, their mothers are being raped, their sisters are being raped?” Kennerley asked. “What have you done? Zippo.”
“That is not even faintly true Kerri-Anne and you’re sounding quite racist now,” Stynes replied.
“I’m offended by that, Yumi,” said the veteran TV presenter.
“Well, keep going then, because every time you open your mouth, you’re sounding racist,” Stynes shot back.
Stynes went on to accuse Kennerley of implying that “women aren’t being raped here in big cities, and children aren’t being raped here in big cities,” and of “drawing a straight line [between sexual abuse and Indigenous communities].”
“You’re also implying those 5,000 protesters, none of whom you know personally, are all lazy and idle and indolent,” she added. “You’re asking if any of them have ever done anything as if it’s clear they haven’t.”
But Kennerley defended her position, insisting that it is “Aboriginal elder women who are desperate for help” and that “just because I have a point of view doesn’t mean I’m racist.”
— Studio 10 (@Studio10au) January 27, 2019
The clash came after Kennerley also criticised people for getting upset about celebrating Australia Day on January 26.
“History is history,” she said. “You may not like it but it is what it is … history, every single continent on the globe was colonised. I have nowhere to go. I will not relinquish any more of the country that is considered by me as mine.”
“I’m not going anywhere, I am as entitled to this land as everybody else.”
Kennerley had been heavily criticised on social media for her remarks, with many echoing the charges levelled at her by Stynes.
Having Kerri-Anne Kennerley be completely racist on national television assuming sexual harm and conduct happens in community is the exact same attitude our government had when they implemented the Emergency response into the NT.This dis course CANNOT be allowed. We know the harm
— Nessa Turnbull Roberts (@IndigenousX) January 28, 2019
Disgusting! This debate is about us Aboriginal ppl being valued & respected as a race, acknowledging our resilience & survival. Many people of all races are now marching & supporting our struggle. Putrid & ignorant comments from KAK. Thanks @yumichild ♥️ #WhitePrivilege #racism https://t.co/6gjOnevY0F
— Nova Peris OAM OLY MAICD (@NovaPeris) January 28, 2019
@KAK, you’re asking if any of the non-Indigenous people marching had been to an “outback” community. Ever thought that maybe we don’t want any more non-Indigenous people turning up to our communities as white saviours? Ever heard of the intervention?
— Shari L Sebbens (@sharileesebbo) January 28, 2019
So KAK insinuates that those protesting were ignorant, somehow manages to conflate protesting in support of aboriginal issues with supporting domestic violence in indigenous communities – gets called out and her response is to be “seriously offended” – what a cop out!
— Miss Anne (@MissAnne16) January 28, 2019
I helped organise on Saturday and spend the other 85% of my life working to end violence against Aboriginal women but the issues aren’t binary. Aboriginal women ALSO and MORE SO experience the violence of settler colonialism and racism, and racists like KAK make it worse. https://t.co/1B7cGkKx7N
— problematic aunty (@MerikiKO) January 28, 2019
Kerri-Anne I have no words except, get off the screens; ignorant and uninformed – making generalised comments does not reflect the many communities I visit. Everyone wants everyone safe & well – Harmful & damaging comments!!
— Joe Williams – TEW (@joewilliams_tew) January 28, 2019
Huge assumption that people can’t do both. Or that they are all unemployed so have loads of time to spare. And a dreadful connection made between criminal behaviour and protest. And she’s so vehement. Yumi is right.
— Carolyn Wright (@Cazoperadag) January 28, 2019
KAK: Cherry picks information to draw an offensive line between the indigenous community and rape while also blaming protest for it.
YUMI: That’s racist.
KAK: I’m offended! It is in fact me who is the victim!!!!
— brendan (@macleanbrendan) January 28, 2019
The Studio 10 panel is expected to debate the issue again this morning.