Albert Mambo stars as an African student ‘Kwami’ in the new Chris Lilley TV show Ja’mie.
The show highlights some significant issues of racism within Australia, especially through the cringeworthy perspective of Ja’mie, who sees Kwami as her charity project. While the show is indeed a satire on Australian school kids, it hits painfully close to the bone on many issues, especially racism.
Kwami, acted amazingly by Albert, is portrayed as silent and unable to speak English, even though he comes from Uganda (where the official language is English). Depicted as poor and uneducated, the characters reflect a racist assumption held by many in the Australian community towards African migrants. References to slavery and apartheid are also thrown in by Ja’mie’s dad, who in South African fashion mentions he knows a number of blacks – they are good workers.
The scene of Ja’mie’s parents “rescuing” Kwami from a community housing project also play into the ‘saviour’ white person syndrome, and other scenes offer a critique of the rich white girl going to ‘Africa’ to save them from poverty. Again, this doesn’t fall to far from reality, which is the reason the show is at times hard to watch.
Ja’mie is so close to the truth it can be easily forgotten that Chris Lilley is essentially making a scathing social commentary of Australian society by holding a mirror up to the Australia public. Anyone who thinks that this doesn’t reflect Australia hasn’t been to high school for a long time.
Interesting video from anonymous regarding human rights violations in Queensland with the introduction of new laws.
The comparisons between the policies of the Nazi party and Australia are disturbing.
The horrors of the Holocaust birthed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the rise of the human rights movement. However, we still haven’t learnt from these mistakes and are still violating basic human rights.
I often ask people: what would you do as a German citizen in WW2? What are you doing now?
To be complacent is to side with the oppressors.
Short and long videos of our event with David Ritter, CEO of Greenpeace Australia, can be found at the bottom of this article.
By Asher Hirsch
By the end of the century, scientists predict that without serious policy changes the world’s temperature will rise by four degrees Celsius. According to the World Bank, the effects of this rise would be devastating: “the inundation of coastal cities; increasing risks for food production potentially leading to higher malnutrition rates; many dry regions becoming dryer, wet regions wetter; unprecedented heat waves in many regions, especially in the tropics; substantially exacerbated water scarcity in many regions; increased frequency of high-intensity tropical cyclones; and irreversible loss of biodiversity, including coral reef systems.” At a Centre event, held during a nine day record breaking heatwave, David Ritter, CEO of Greenpeace Australia, spoke about these effects of climate change and the way the law can be used to protect our environment from this devastating future.