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Students Petrie Alemu, Mabior Ater, Mihamed Semra, Ese Oseghale and Gereng Dere go to Apple at Highpoint Shopping Centre for the store's apology. Photo: Rachel Wells (http://www.theage.com.au)

Australian Black Teenagers Ejected From Melbourne Apple Store…May Not Be A Racial Issue After All… here’s why

A video clip showing a group of African Australian teenage school kids being ejected from the Apple Store in Highpoint Shopping Centre in Melbourne, has sparked a massive outcry of racial profiling... ie. the ever popular race card being pulled...but here's why it may not be a racial issue at all...and it's actually very simple...

A short video clip was uploaded to Facebook on Tuesday night which has since had over 2 million views, yes over 2 million people have now potentially been given the wrong idea about this whole saga.Here's the video...if you have problems viewing it, the original on Facebook is available hereNow this has sparked a worldwide "racial profiling" uproar as everybody jumps onto the bandwagon pulling the race card...but is this entirely correct? There's a very high probability that it was very much nothing of the sort...The students returned to the Apple Store on Wednesday with the Principal of Maribyrnong College, Nick Scott . Following a discussion with a senior store manager the following occured,"She apologised to us and told us that we are welcome here anytime," said Mabior Ater. "It feels like we have justice now."A spokeswoman from Apple said it was looking into the situation but said Apple was committed to cultural diversity and inclusion.Now let's all just put down our guns, put our little cards back in our pockets and just adult for a second.Let's be clear on a couple of things before we continue so we all have a mutual understanding.I am not saying that it is impossible that this is a racial profiling incident, where there is possibility and probability, one must accept that it is a possibility and probability that this may be the case. I think we can all agree on that because none of us know what exactly is going on in the mind of that store staff member. Who he is, what his background is and his actual stance on racism, and granted, exactly the same can be said of these lads, who they are, what their background is etc, it's quite likely that these lads are very good well brought up kids, who may have unfortunately for the first time in their lives experienced what they feel may be an injustice. Very much something the rest of us adults have experienced many times before, some even on a daily basis...it's one the joys of being someone actively against racism...However before I blow this argument out the water, since I just happen to be a white male and it probably also doesn't help, and I'm sure you've noticed by now, I'm a South African...(if you need to take a minute to let the screams of "OMG! he's a white South African! WTF!! He must be a f*ckin racist!!! OMG!!!" quieten down in your head, then please feel free 🙂 ) we can then continue, I guess by saying that, I may need to justify myself just a little ,for the sake of those who don't know me and what I'm about. So my first question would be...Would a racist happily have a photo taken with the Mmusi Maimane, and openly share his hopes of him being the future President of South Africa?... and be wearing a t-shirt with the face of Nelson Mandela printed on it (who is my greatest mentor and hero in life btw)?Or would a racist take the time to climb Mount Kilimanjaro to raise funds and awareness for LIV Village, an orphanage in South Africa who does absolutely incredibly mind blowing heart warming work, predominantly for black children who have been abandoned, abused and lost their parents to HIV/AIDS?, Children that have experienced an exceptionally bad start in life...Or would a racist walk 624km (400 miles) in 18 days from Johannesburg to Durban in South Africa for the J9 Foundation (Motor Neurone Disease Charity) and purposely mark the finish line at LIV Village to help promote the orphanage further which ultimately will help the children he so dearly cares about, who are pretty much all black or mixed race?Would a racist have an exceptionally wide range of friends of all races? You're more than welcome to trawl through my entire Facebook Friends list if you wish.I'm sure that will give you a good idea of who I am and what I'm all about...so let's proceed to blowing this whole thing out the water shall we?The reason that it's ALSO highly probable that we can call bullsh*t on this whole "racial profiling"/"racism" saga is quite simply with this little red sign...available from Amazon.co.uk for the special price of £6.49 excl. postage, which is a mere AUS$13.49 just incase you were wondering.OnlyTwoSchoolChildrenNow I'm sure for every person that's ever lived or been to the UK, the penny has likely to have already dropped, but for the sake of everyone else, let me explain.Upon entering virtually any Off license/cornershop/tea room in the UK, you will no doubt be greeted with this lovely bold sign, and there's a very simple reason for that. Obviously due to a massive amount of past incidents, it is widely known the school kids in large groups have been known to shoplift. Kids will be kids after all, and while they are growing up they may not be able to control that urge of "I want" and fully understand the concept of money so the chances of a school kid shoplifting something are exceptionally higher above that of an adult.This is a widely accepted standard here in the UK where it's acceptable for shop owners to put things in place to prevent shoplifting. Yes granted this incident was in Australia and not the UK, but you cannot deny that it makes a lot of sense...regardless of where you are in the world, kids will be kids, and they can be naughty little buggers at the best of times, I'm sure you'll agree that no kid ever grows up without doing anything wrong... its called growing up.The fact of the matter is the following two facts: 
  1. These were school kids
  2. They were in a large group, there were six of them. (The industry standard for our little sign here, is two).
Obviously looking at the two facts above, it is completely possible to reach the conclusion in the video without race being called into the equation. Ask yourself, if there was no video, and no mention of the race of the lads, I repeat, NO MENTION OF RACE...you were just told that "a group of school kids were ejected from an Apple store under suspicion that they may want to steal something"...what would your initial thoughts be on the matter? Be honest with yourself, you cannot bring race into the equation because race is not a fact in the sentence, what will your initial thoughts be? I can pretty much guarantee that it will be something along the lines of "yeah, the security guy was probably right to be suspicious" We weren't there, we don't know what the lads were doing in there before the video started rolling (it would be great if Apple could possibly provide clear CCTV recording which would support or not support this argument), how they were acting? If they were acting an a suspicious manner? something obviously made the security guard think that the store or the boy's future for that matter, was at risk...the question is, was it fuelled by racial thoughts or was it merely due to a large group of school kids who may or may not have been horsing around as young teenagers generally do?The point is that it's so 50/50, that at this stage you cannot absolutely know for sure, so by pulling the race card, you may be causing a much bigger issue, putting innocent people at risk since this sort of thing fuels racial hatred in society like jet fuel, where each and everyday people fall victim to that hatred and people get physically hurt. I'm from South Africa, we're very well experienced when it comes to being exposed to that sort of thing. Do these boys and their parents and Nick Scott of Maribyrnong College want to be responsible for fuelling the fire that results in people being hurt or even killed when it doesn't have to be, given the chances of it possibly not being a racial issue at all? I think that's a question they really need to think long and hard about.Welcome to the thunderdome that is life lads...enjoy the rideRacism wrecks lives, so best you make 110% damn sure that you are fighting against it...and not for it...Think about it...
[h/t: The Age]
[Featured image: Students Petrie Alemu, Mabior Ater, Mihamed Semra, Ese Oseghale and Gereng Dere go to Apple at Highpoint Shopping Centre for the store's apology. Photo: Rachel Wells (http://www.theage.com.au)]

About Marky Warren

Your Blogger-In-Chief, Proud Springbok and Sharks Supporter.. If I could sum myself up in one quote, I believe Steve Jobs said it best… “Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently,they’re not fond of rules. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
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