Four years after moving back home to Australia, I feel like I’m living in America again, Mibenge Nsenduluka writes.
Four years after moving back home to Australia, I feel like I’m living in America again, Mibenge Nsenduluka writes.

‘I’m exhausted after moving home to Australia’

OPINION

I'm mentally exhausted. Four years after moving back home to Australia, I feel like I'm living in America again, where dizzying debates about race are the norm and the political correctness would have even Mother Teresa scared to speak.

What a year, first COVID-19 and now this. Between seeing constant race wars on Facebook and virtue signalling from publicity-hungry celebrities, I need a break yet can't seem to escape the faux outrage.

Sydney Confidential Reporter Mibenge Nsenduluka. Picture: Jonathan Ng
Sydney Confidential Reporter Mibenge Nsenduluka. Picture: Jonathan Ng

Just as I began to switch off the other night with some good wine and uplifting music, I received a random phone call from an ex-boyfriend of two years who was apologising for "not understanding the whole race thing sooner".

The Black Lives Matter movement had somehow provoked a sense of guilt in him for having "not been aware of his white privilege" and "not being more sensitive to race" during our relationship.

I politely accepted and just like that, I was drawn right back into feeling tired again. His next question was baffling but one of sincerity, "so, are my kids still allowed to dress up like their idol Michael Jordan?"

He of course was referring to blackface, which has become the driving force in the latest trend of "exposing" famous people like Jimmy Fallon for past transgressions.

The American comedian was recently forced to apologise for a 2000 Saturday Night Live sketch in which he imitated Chris Rock by wearing blackface.

 

Closer to home, comedian Chris Lilley is also feeling the heat after Netflix pulled four of his shows for similar reasons. Add to that HBO's removal of the classic film Gone With the Wind and so begins a very slippery slope.

While it's admirable that networks and big corporations are desperate to do their part in the global movement against racism, it feels more like a PR move and attempt at a quick fix for a much broader issue.

Netflix has pulled some of Chris Lilley’s shows from its streaming platform.
Netflix has pulled some of Chris Lilley’s shows from its streaming platform.

Of course, racism is a cancer on society and needs to be called out but are Twitter hashtags and censorship really the answer? Instead of labelling talented artists like Fallon and Lilley as "racist" when they're just misinformed, let's use what's happening around the world as a teachable moment.

I believe that meaningful change starts with education in schools, because there's power in knowing your history. Censorship will only hinder us and get us nowhere, honesty is key.

Mibenge Nsenduluka is an entertainment reporter for The Daily Telegraph

Originally published as 'I'm exhausted after moving home to Australia'



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