Australia's multi cultural values and sensitivities have once again come under the spotlight following an incident at Lasseters Casino in the Northern Territory on New Years Day.
Patron Bess Price was refused entry to the premise and claims racism and mistreatment.
The incident comes off the back of yet another week of what is being reported as racist related killing of an Indian student in Melbourne, Victoria.
For the uninitiated, unfortunately Australia has a terrible history of what is known as "black deaths in custody" (Indigenous Australian dying, sometimes bashed to death, while in Australian police custody).
Rupert Murdoch's media company, News Limited, including his Darwin based Northern Territory News in Australia's "top end", has been doing an excellent job of providing fair and balanced coverage of Indigenous Australia. What some readers may not know is that it was a young Murdoch who helped cement his media business reputation in 1959 as editor of The News by covering the trial of Max Stuart (Ngoombujarra), a young aboriginal man who was sentenced to death after being found guilty of the murder of a nice year old girl on what was considered extremely questionable evidence. An Australian film entitled Black and White covers that story.
It seems that every time there is a serious incident on Australian soil everyone (press included so I'm "guilty" too) is looking to see if there are "racist" elements to it. Mind you, when a new story breaks a good journalist will always look deeper in order to help find the real story and to add meat and substance. It is not unusual for there often to be more to a story that what is first though and reported, so I think it is the duty of the press to see if there are potential racist elements to breaking news.
On a side note, Lasseters closed down their online casino operation via Income Access circa 2008, however the incident may potentially see more punters having a hit at various other online casinos rather that risk altercations at bricks and mortar establishments.
Australia's most recent race related incidents are going to keep the Australian government busy, and the rumor mill says that at least one film producer is looking to do a 'Casino Jack' style production and between the Labor Party, Crown Casino, Star City Casino and Lasseters they have some bloody good fodder to work with.
This morning I personally called The Northern Territory Times and spoke to journalist "Matt" and he basically said that patron Bess Price is naming the casino as racist and that the casino is calling her drunk. We have also called Lasseters Casino and spoke with Lasseters Group Chief Operating Officer, Brad Morgan. Mr Morgan advised us of no further comment at this time. Should further details emerge Media Man will pass them on to the readership.
In the meantime Australia's undisputed casino king, James Packer, continues to do his modest bit to assist in positive Australian community and multi cultural relations. James and Erica Packer are supporters of UNICEF. Mrs Packer recently bought James a water pump at Christmas for an impoverished community, reports Fairfax Media. The gift is being referred to as the "gift that gives". Mr Packer has also collaborated with Australian mining Magnate, Andrew Forrest in recent years by a special project helping find sustainable employment opportunities for Indigenous Australians. In other Australian multi cultural related matters allegations continue to fly back and forward between Sea Shepherd and Japanese whalers. Australian racing, gaming and advertising gurus, John Singleton and son, Jack Singleton, are long time supporters of Sea Shepherd and just one of their well known brands and stunts is known as "Whale Safe Beer". The Singleton's, Alan Jones and other notable Australian racing identities are currently looking at ways to bring Australian racing and gaming to the internet in an improved fashion. The news comes as the industry awaits updates on the Australian Productivity Report into the gaming industry. Unlike Vegas' "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas", what happened down under in Australia, doesn't stay "down under". Cheers me maties from a multi cultural Bondi Beach.
*The writer is the founder and director of Media Man, primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company.
*The writer has worked with, represented and collaborated with various Indigenous Australian tribes such as Githabul People and Yuggera tribe and is a pro active member of Virgin Unite
*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited
Greg Tingle, Media Man Int (Special Contributor to Gambling911.com)
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