Australian Minister Apologises For Racist Comments About Irish People

Australian Minister Apologises For Racist Comments About Irish People

"If anybody knocks on your door that has an Irish accent, automatically ask them to leave."

That's a pretty bold statement from Australian Minister for Consumer Affairs, Marlene Kairouz. I presume that she must imagine there to be certain exceptions to this rule. For instance, if you know the person with the Irish accent; it would be a sad day indeed if, say, the brother of an Irish emigré was paying his sibling a surprise visit, only for the door to be glumly shut in his face to the words "I'm sorry, but Australian Minister for Consumer Affairs Marlene Kairouz has said that I can't trust you because of your accent, you must go home brother."

Out of context it is a pretty ridiculous statement. In context it is only slightly less ridiculous.

She made the sweeping proclamation, featured in a segment on 9 News Melbourne, during a press conference concerning a series of scams being carried out in Melbourne. The news segment concerned a woman who had been scammed out of several thousand dollars by men claiming to be roofers, who made a shambolic attempt at fixing some of the tiles on her roof. She was eventually so distressed with their shoddy work and the fact that they just wouldn't leave, that she paid them to simply get them away.

The reporter for the story said that these particular men involved in this scam had Irish accents, which he described as "a common feature for a lot of these scams". This then led into Marlene Kairouz's comments.

You can see how careful they are being, tip-toeing around actually saying 'Irish people' and instead saying 'people with Irish accents', attempting to dodge any accusations of racism. The excuse presumably here is that by merely saying 'Irish accents' they are leaving open the possibility that the people committing these scams are merely putting on the accents, like some kind of shoddy Gaelic Inspector Clouseau.


People, like the earnest Gaz here on Twitter, have been quick to label her comments as 'racist'

Australian Minister for Consumer Affairs, Marlene Karouz has made an apology on Twitter saying her remarks were somewhat misguided.


All that is certain about this whole affair is that when the lady who has been a victim of the scam first starts speaking in the video, about 11 seconds in, I genuinely thought the news reporter's V/O was her voice for a second or two, and that brought me untold joy.

Also Read: 'Raw Egg Coffee' Is The Latest Coffee Trend And It Needs To Be Stopped

Rory McNab

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