Friday, October 16, 2009

Mysterious Asian, I wanna get close to you...

"REVEALED: SECRET OF AISLING SUSPECT"! That's the front page headline this morning, as the Herald seeks to further flog what appears to be a tragic accident. So by 'suspect', they actually mean 'person not suspected of anything to do with it'.
The mysterious Asian woman seen with Aisling Symes was mentally unwell and has a history of trying to lure children into cars with lollies.
Ah, the "mysterious Asian" trope. They're so opaque, Asians; we never really know what's going on in their heads. They're all profound and peaceful on the surface, like the Dalai Lama. But get beyond that exterior and they are cunning and calculating, like Ming the Merciless. Anyway, she's mysterious, right? Because evidently she didn't read the paper and turn herself in straight away.
The Herald has learned the woman was from the Philippines, had a dog and fitted the general description given by the 9-year-old who saw her approach the toddler just after 5pm last Monday week.
Asian? Check. Has dog? Check. (NB - probably for dinner.) Fits general description given by child? Check. Guilty of some sort of crime? Oh, wait...

The article spends a lot of time rehashing the old abduction story. I can just about buy the argument that at least some of the hysteria of last week was justified by the fact that it may have helped find the girl. Hell, maybe referring to her as Asian even had some point then, if it helped people find the woman; now that that isn't going to happen, I wonder what the reason for this reporting is. One has to go down to the ninth 'paragraph' before we find this:

Detectives spoke to the woman on Tuesday night, and Mr Davey said police were "satisfied she's unable to help us further".

He refused to discuss the conversation and said the woman was no longer part of the investigation.

So... the police have no further interest in this woman.... sorry, Asian woman. Because we mustn't forget the importance of her ethnicity. It's lucky she's not also a lesbian, because "Revealed: Gay secret of Aisling suspect" wouldn't have fit on the header. Although perhaps they could have dropped the word "suspect", seeing as "the woman was no longer part of the investigation."

In fact, the scariest part of the article is this:
Police then [after the body was found] said they had located the Asian woman, but refused to identify her.
How dare they refuse to name an (apparently) totally innocent person so that a newspaper who can smell (non-white) blood can more-or-less accuse her of murder? But don't worry, the Herald have done their own investigative journalism to uncover a person of no public interest whatsoever.

An Asian person.

7 comments:

  1. I'm glad someone wrote about this. I generally avoid the Herald at all costs, but had read a bit about the Aisling case online and was appalled at the choice of language used to imply the suspicious nature of the ASIAN WOMAN. How much more Other can it get? Non-white, non-male. The dog then provides the chilling bone of normativity against which all the other cultural inadequacies are brought into sharp focus. It's never US, it's always THEM.
    Ugh. Tired.

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  2. WTF? Who writes these headlines? They're either (a) very thick, or (b) very dishonest.

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  3. Even our beloved Kiwifruit (the Chinese Gooseberry) is an Asian immigrant.

    These people need to GTF over it.

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  4. Garth George has been caught plagarising his column from a global warming denial outfit, with any luck he will lose his job!

    See hot-topic.co.nz it is currently the top article.

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  5. "a history of trying to lure children into cars with lollies"

    Really? The one urban legend cliche that every child hears about over and over again from the time they're allowed to go anywhere by themselves? Seriously, what are the odds of any child getting into a car with a Filipino woman offering them lollies??

    Sorry - of course I meant to say "Asian" woman - as I'll just assume you're all too stupid to understand what Filipino means.

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  6. you mean Filipina.

    "plagarising"

    sadly, no. he fully discloses origin of his (admittedly large tract) of copy/paste text.

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  7. Blog, for f***'s sake!

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