19 November 2010

Chris Graham and Gary Foley Public Talk + MAIC music fundraiser

Racism in the Media: 
The Lie that Built the Northern Territory Intervention
A special presentation by Walkley Award-winning journalist Chris Graham
With an introduction by Gary Foley 

It was a great night, on Friday! Thanks to Chris Graham and Gary Foley for their insightful and engaging words. And thank you to all the MAIC supporters for getting behind another successful event to accelerate this campaign. 
Hopefully you were inspired by Friday night's events. We are calling people out for is the "Sack Macklin Protest @Readings" on Tuesday at 5.30pm. Bring your placards and loud voices. We are going to show Jenny Macklin that there is opposition to this racist Intervention!

  Friday, 7pm, 26 November 2010
Venue: New Council Chambers (next to the Bella Union Bar), Trades Hall (cnr Lygon and Victoria St), Melbourne
Cost: Free (donations accepted)

Join Chris Graham for an expose about a fraudulent ABC Lateline program which aired in the lead-up to the intervention, entitled ‘Sexual slavery reported in Indigenous communities'.

The Lateline story helped the federal government mount the case for the NT intervention. But as Graham will reveal, the story was built on a gigantic fraud. The scandal surrounding this story has already destroyed several careers, sparked a series of parliamentary brawls and high level government, an apology to federal parliament, not to mention police raids on homes in Canberra and Central Australia.

The spotlight on Lateline's reporting has already seen an ‘anonymous youth worker' unmasked as a ministerial adviser, and a doctor caught prescribing Viagra to an alleged paedophile.

"The scale of the fraud perpetrated by Lateline, and the determination of the ABC to whitewash this scandal and avoid any further scrutiny will leave your head spinning," said Chris Graham.

"If you think you know what media behaving badly looks like, then you need to think again.

"Lateline's reporting led directly to the greatest human rights abuse against Aboriginal people certainly of my time, and probably in the last half century.

"The Northern Territory intervention has harmed Aboriginal people; it's caused starvation; it's seen a dramatic rise in reports of self-harm incidents; it's driven children away from school; it's wasted hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars. In short, it's been a disaster for the nation's most disadvantaged citizens, the people who could least afford it.

"The media has always played a crucial role in creating an environment where governments can get away with race politics during election campaigns. In this case, the government couldn't have done it without Lateline."

"I've worked in the media for more than 20 years, almost half of that in Indigenous affairs, so I already had a pretty mixed view about the conduct of many of my colleagues.

"Even so, I've always had a very positive image of ABC news and current affairs. It was one news source I felt I could really trust.

"I don't feel that way anymore."
Chris Graham is a Walkley Award-winning journalist, and a former editor of the National Indigenous Times.

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Please stick around after the event for 'Liberation Bound', a music fundraiser in the Bella Union Bar for MAIC featuring hip hop and reggae acts. Cost is $10/8, or $5 if you have attended the Chris Graham event.