Celebs clash: ‘I’m sick of minorities’
A discussion about Australia Day quickly turned fiery on last night's episode of I'm A Celeb, with politician Jacqui Lambie complaining that she's "sick of minorities".
After noting what day it was - January 26 - US-born entertainment reporter Richard Reid asked his Aussie campmates about the push to change the date of Australia Day.
January 26 marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet, a date some Indigenous Australians instead refer to as Invasion Day.
"How many different days do we have to have in the country? A day for this, a day for that. How many bloody days do you want?" asked Lambie.
"Some people want it changed - a minority want it changed - and it's about time the parliament had a backbone and said 'Enough.' I'm sick of minorities too, to be honest with you. I'm just sick of us all bending over for minorities. That seems to be the political ambition at the moment and it's just killing the country," she said.
Fellow politician Sam Dastyari - who was eliminated later in last night's episode - offered Reid the other side of the debate.
"The counter view is effectively this. If your national day is a day of inclusion, (but) if there are sections of the community that don't view it that way, if people feel excluded, I think we're better off picking another day for it," he said.
"But when you pick another day, there'll be another group who says, 'You can't do it on this day.' This is where we're getting to," said Lambie.
Away from the group in a to-camera confessional, Dastyari expressed his frustration at Lambie's views.
"This idea that somehow minorities are getting it easy, and this country's being run for minorities, is just so inconceivably wrong that I personally can't let it stand," he fumed.
Gogglebox star Yvie Jones then explained why she was in favour of a date change.
"I'm a white person and I may feel discluded from that day, and embarrassed and ashamed of that day. But I do want to celebrate Australia, and how it is today and where we're going in the future. Listening to minorities when it's traumatising to them is a very empathetic and sympathetic thing to do," she said.
Lambie remained unconvinced, declaring that Australia is "now heading into where the minorities rule, not the majorities."
"That's madness Jacqui. That is madness. That is such an overstatement," Dastyari said.
"Look what you started," campmate Angie Kent whispered to Reid as the debate continued.
"I know. Sorry. Next time just hit me."
Debate also raged among I'm A Celeb viewers on social media:
Sorry Jacqui but you’re wrong on this. Indigenous people are not minority groups and I think you need to actually listen to the reasons behind the push to change the date. #ImACelebrityAU— 𝔸𝕣𝕜𝕒𝕕𝕪𝔼𝕤𝕡𝕒𝕣𝕫𝕒𝟚𝟘𝟘𝟡 (@Arkady2009) January 27, 2019
Gee Jacqui. The indigenous majority back in 1788 had to give in to the will of the English minority. #ImACelebrityAU— ℝ𝕠𝕕𝕕𝕝𝕖𝕫🤔 (@Roddlez1) January 27, 2019
Christ Jacqui is so unbelievably racist: “I’m sick of minorities” #ImACelebrityAU— Hannah ☆♪ (@Hannah_LMN) January 27, 2019
The campmates' debate comes after the T oday Show's new entertainment reporter Brooke Boney made headlines earlier this month when she called for an Australia Day date change during her first week on air at Nine.
Gamilaroi woman Boney explained that she "can't separate 26 January from the fact that my brothers are more likely to go to jail than school, or that my little sisters and my mum are more likely to be beaten or raped than anyone else's sisters or mum. And that started from that day.
"For me it is a difficult day and I don't want to celebrate it. Any other day of the year I will tie an Australian flag around my neck and run through the streets."