a stouch between paupers...
In King's Cross in 2012, two Aboriginal teenagers aged 14 and 17 were shot, wounded and further assaulted by police after the car they had stolen had lost control and mounted footpaths, injuring two women. Police, as well as member for Wentworth Malcolm Turnbull, were quick to defend the actions of the police, despite released video footage showing excessive force being used by the police. The Aboriginal community members who protested outside parliament house following the incident questioned how quickly the officers were to pull guns on two unarmed, cornered teenagers.
On Sunday, two incredibly wealthy long-term friends had a violent altercation on a Bondi footpath. Reports state that James Packer and David Gyngell engaged in a vicious street brawl; shocking onlookers with the brutality of their actions. The two men traded blows, wrestled on the ground, engaged each other in headlocks, and eventually had to be forcibly separated by security guards. Whilst latest reports today state that police are now finally investigating this violent public incident, the photos taken by onlookers have reportedly been purchased by News Limited for a tidy $200,000.
The slow police reaction on what appears to be a violent and distressing incident, is telling. So too are the public and media responses to it. It appears that many, rather than seeing this street brawl as the violent actions of two grown and influential men clearly unable to control their tempers and react in responsible and rational ways, are viewing it as some rich-boy sideshow entertainment. Indeed, when comments such as “billion dollar biffo” or “glass jaw” are used, street violence becomes almost comedic.
Why is it then that different standards are applied when rich white men behave badly, and indeed, illegally?
What if Packer and Gyngell were young Indigenous men?
Why is it that different standards are applied when rich white men behave badly? Because the more socially privileged you are, the less severe your transgressions are perceived to be