On ‘The Project‘ recently, co-host Steve Price and columnist Jamila Rizvi got into a reasonably heated debate about the United States election and Donald Trump becoming President.
While Price‘s opinion on Trump (the feeling of disenfranchisement among American voters, particularly those living in middle America) was a valid point of discussion, he unfortunately interrupted Rizvi to make the point (during a question directed to her), which caused co-host Carrie Bickmore to tell him off and to “watch his tone”.
Rizvi expressed an also-valid opinion in response to Price’s interruption, telling him that the concept of ‘Real America’ is “bullshit” because all Americans are “real Americans”.
Price told her that,
“This is the reason why Donald Trump won, because people like you lecture and hector people.”
— #TheProjectTV (@theprojecttv) November 9, 2016
A petition has now erupted on the Internet, claiming that the Channel 10 show should apologise to Price live on air.
At time of writing, it has been signed by 18,000 people, who believe that Price is a victim of ‘leftist bullying’.
“Steve was abruptly cut off and insulted by Jamila on national television, despite his best efforts to lower the outrageous tone being fuelled by the guest.In every single facebook post detailing the exchange, the people of Australia have expressed their outrage of the leftist bullying that occurred, coming out in support of the conservative commentator.Nobody, no matter what side of politics they fall on, should have to experience the abuse and degradation of what Steve had to go through on that program.”
The petition claims that on ‘every single Facebook post the people of Australia were outraged’ about the way Price was treated, but in actual fact there was considerable debate about who was in the wrong. Many were also outraged about the treatment of Rizvi.
It isn’t a secret that Price has received much backlash in the past for cutting people off, or considering his own views and voice more important than other people’s.
Recently, he received much backlash for consistently speaking over journalist Van Badham on Q&A, who he called “hysterical” when she attempted to ignore his interruptions and finish her sentence about sexist behaviour on ‘The Footy Show‘. When called upon to apologise, Price said he refused to be “verballed by an aggressive woman”.
However, he’s also clashed heavily with co-host Carrie Bickmore in the past. Earlier this year, the host was left furious when she questioned Price about a tweet that implied mothers should feed their child more discreetly after he saw a woman publicly breastfeeding in the Qantas terminal of a domestic airport.
A mother of two herself, Bickmore told an increasingly-frustrated Price that his tweet came off badly:
“Just for your information, we feed where we want to, not where you want us to.”
Price‘s response was unapologetic then, too:
“I can comment on what I like, when I like, and people can just go and jam it as far as I’m concerned.”
Above all else; it should be acknowledged that Price‘s whole purpose on the show is to cause debate and speak on behalf of a more conservative audience. He’s supposed to ruffle feathers; he’s supposed to create arguments; he’s paid big bucks to fill the ‘shock jock’ shoes. He isn’t there to be apologetic – he’s there to be divisive.
However, a petition calling for an apology because he was told to let someone finish their sentence and to ‘watch his tone’, when he himself has based his modern career on yelling over others seems a teensy bit rich. If Rizvi & Bickmore‘s actions can legitimately considered ‘leftist bullying’, what should Price‘s previous misdemeanours be deemed?
At the end of the day, we could all agree that more politeness from both sides of the political spectrum would be a fantastic addition to the current state of the world tbh, but hey – chance would be a fine thing.
If you’d like to check out the petition, you can do that HERE.
Photo: The Project.