Saturday, 3 October 2015

Someone Thinks Vegemite is Racist. Well, So What?

An American woman thinks that Vegemite is racist. In a short YouTube video, and in a provocative blog post which has no sources to back up her claims, twenty year old Cassidy Boon berates Australian's for being racist and declares that Vegemite is racist against Indigenous Australians because the popular spread is black. In her blog, Ms Boon makes a number of claims about Australia, the underlying message being that she thinks that Australians, and their iconic spread, are fundamentally racist. 

Well, so what?

Since Cassidy Boon shared her video and blog, the whole thing has gone viral and hundreds of bored and patriotic Australians have become outraged by her claims. The big question is why anyone even cares about this. We live in an age where anyone can share an opinion about anything on the internet. There is nothing to stop someone writing a blog about racist potatoes, or the secret, subliminal slut shaming qualities of peanut paste. There is also plenty of scope for misrepresentation, and trolls.

And the latter is exactly what Cassidy Boon is.

A poor attempt at satire, Cassidy Boon, a troll who often posts sensational posts about a variety of topics--in fact Snopes recently published this regarding a post by Cassidy Boon where she was claiming to be suing the man who rescued her from drowning, and exposed her as a straw feminist. That's Nonsense has their own section devoted to Cassidy Boon.

Why do we even pay attention to this? Is it because Cassidy Boon plays on our fears, that of being unfairly accused of being racist? Australians seem to have an inherit fear of what the rest of the world thinks of us, to the point where one person on the internet can have us questioning an iconic spread. I don't know who is responsible for Cassidy Boon, but he or she must be pissing themselves laughing when they read some of the comments from patriotic Australians on the post.

Whether or not you believe Cassidy Boon is a real person, maybe its time more people asked themselves if everything they read on the internet is worth paying attention to. Just because someone posts an opinion online does not mean that that persons opinion is smart, important or even worth paying attention to. And most of the time, even when it is meant to be a joke, it just isn't funny. Let it go.