In classic white Australian media antics, Waleed Aly has been listed as hosting Australia Talks tonight in a TV guide – when actually, it’s ~other~ Aussie Brown Muslim Man™ Nazeem Hussain that’ll be on our screens tonight.
A TV guide for tonight has listed the hosts of ABC’s Australia Talks incorrectly – naming Waleed Aly as the cohost with Annabel Crabb, rather than Nazeem Hussain. There’s conflicting claims of who published the TV guide – Nazeem Hussain said it was The Age (who, along with PEDESTRIAN.TV, is owned by Nine), while TV Black Box has attributed it to News Corp.
Either way it’s not the first fucking time this has happened, with The Age previously putting a picture of Nazeem Hussain in their paper instead of Waleed Aly.
Nazeem Hussain himself shared a picture of the TV guide on Twitter, captioned “not again…”
Honestly, it’s fucking embarrassing that Aussie media is this inept, and I’m speaking as another brown Muslim in this industry.
Not again… pic.twitter.com/AVJmbLMT8C— Nazeem Hussain (@nazeem_hussain) June 20, 2021
Am I surprised that Aussie media mixed up two of the only prominent brown Muslim commentators on Australian TV? No. Am I disappointed? Yes. But hey, racism is a long-standing tradition here in Oz.
Consistently mixing up two people of colour who have nothing in common except their race or religion is a pretty common form of racist migroagression that POC experience. I know I’ve been misidentified as all of my brown woman coworkers, friends or cousins by white people at most points in my life. It’s happened countless times – and it happens a lot in Australian media, too.
I mean, remember when WHO Magazine published a photo of three-time Vogue cover model Adut Akech? Except the image wasn’t of Adet Akuch. It was of Flavia Lazarus, another Black model.
Adet was obviously outraged at the fact that Australian media had mixed her up with another Black woman – something that we rarely ever see happen to white people. And she let the world know in a blistering Instagram post calling out racism in the media industry.
“It goes to show that people are very ignorant and narrowminded that they think every black girl or African people looks the same. I feel as though this would’ve not happened to a white model,” she said.
“I’ve been called by the name of another models who happens to be of the same Ethnicity, I find it very ignorant, rude and disrespectful towards both of us simply because we know that this doesn’t happen with white models.
“Australia you’ve a lot of work to do and you’ve got to do better and that goes to the rest of the industry.”
Yes, they do! The fact that this TV guide about Nazeem Hussain would have been approved by multiple people and yet no one saw an issue with it is honestly harrowing.
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Mixing up models, presenters or other famous people of colour is the same brand of casual racism that sees many white people mix up their ethnic coworkers or staff members in the work place.
Adut Akech is simultaneously on 3 different Sept mag covers incl #MeghansVogue. That’s how big her profile is in the industry. And they still put the wrong pic w/ this feature article. Every POC whose ever been called the wrong name at work ????????♀️ can empathize. #ForcesForChange https://t.co/mVw2bNoMA4— Royal Suitor / R.S. Locke (@royal_suitor) August 25, 2019
It’s the same brand of racism that sees people say ‘all Asians look the same.’
And it’s the same casual racism that has white people say “oh, my best friend’s cousin’s boyfriend’s sister has a Muslim friend” when they meet me for the first time. It denies us individualism and it denies us identity, and Australian media needs to do better.