What's Rising

Brooke Boney reveals she was blindsided by the backlash against her Australia Day comments

The Today show’s entertainment reporter Brooke Boney has spoken candidly about the backlash she faced over her Australia Day comments earlier this year. 

The 31-year-old had said on air that Australia Day reminds her that her sisters are mother are ‘more likely to get raped’ than white Australians. 

Speaking on The Real Podcast this week, Brooke said that she didn’t expect to face such a negative reaction, having previously worked for news organisations with a more left wing audience. 

'It wasn't the sort of reaction I expected': Indigenous Today show reporter Brooke Boney (pictured) has said she was blindsided by the backlash against her Australia Day comments

‘It wasn’t the sort of reaction I expected’: Indigenous Today show reporter Brooke Boney (pictured) has said she was blindsided by the backlash against her Australia Day comments 

Before being hired by Channel Nine in late 2018, Brooke had worked for the ABC, SBS and Triple J, all of which are funded by the taxpayers. 

‘A commercial audience is a very broad church. It has been challenging obviously with the Australia Day stuff. It wasn’t the sort of reaction I would have expected,’ she said. 

But, in hindsight, Brooke said that perhaps it was ‘ exactly the sort of reaction’ she should have expected from a mainstream audience. 

Views: Earlier this year, Brooke (pictured) had said on air that Australia Day reminds her that her sisters are mother are 'more likely to get raped' than white Australians

Views: Earlier this year, Brooke (pictured) had said on air that Australia Day reminds her that her sisters are mother are ‘more likely to get raped’ than white Australians

Despite the backlash surrounding her Australia Day views, Brooke said it was an ‘honour to be invited into people’s homes’ each morning as a presenter on Today and Today Extra.

‘It’s not the mass audience’s fault they have certain views of indigenous people. It’s just that they have never really seen it before,’ she explained. 

She added that it is important for Indigenous people to be represented in all aspects of the media, which is why she enjoys being involved in the ‘lighter’ end of journalism at Channel Nine.

Stunned: Speaking on The Real Podcast this week, Brooke (second from right) said that she didn't expect to face such a negative reaction, having previously worked for news organisations with a more left wing audience. Pictured when she was employed by Triple J

Stunned: Speaking on The Real Podcast this week, Brooke (second from right) said that she didn’t expect to face such a negative reaction, having previously worked for news organisations with a more left wing audience. Pictured when she was employed by Triple J 

She said: ‘To have the opportunity to sit in someone’s lounge room and make jokes about Chris Hemsworth’s biceps or a dog riding a skateboard, or whatever it is that we’re talking about that morning on the Today show, it’s is a big step forward for me.

‘I’m not up there saying, “Give us back our land, I want land rights”, and that’s absolutely worthy and people who protest I take my hat off to them, but to be able to contribute to normal everyday conversation and people go, “Oh yeah, isn’t she that girl who is on the Today show? Oh yeah, she happens to be Aboriginal” It is a pretty amazing thing.’

Brooke also said that audiences for ABC, SBS, and Triple J felt like ‘a natural home’ for her, while Today’s viewership has been more challenging. 

Insight: 'A commercial audience is a very broad church. It has been challenging obviously with the Australia Day stuff. It wasn't the sort of reaction I would have expected,' Brooke said. Pictured with her Today show colleagues Deborah Knight, Georgie Gardner and Tony Jones

Insight: ‘A commercial audience is a very broad church. It has been challenging obviously with the Australia Day stuff. It wasn’t the sort of reaction I would have expected,’ Brooke said. Pictured with her Today show colleagues Deborah Knight, Georgie Gardner and Tony Jones 

On Australia Day this year, Brooke claimed that Australia Day reminds her of the fact her sisters are mother are ‘more likely to get raped’ than white Australians. 

Initially calling Australia ‘the best country in the world, no doubt’, she went on to say the date of the national holiday should be moved.   

‘I can’t separate the 26th of January from the fact that my brothers are more likely to go to jail than school, or that my little sisters and my mum are more likely to be beaten and raped than anyone else’s sisters or mum,’ she said.

‘And that started from that day. For me it’s a difficult day and I don’t want to celebrate it. Any other day of the year I will tie an Australian flag around my neck and run through the streets with anyone else.’ 

Representation: Brooke added that it is important for Indigenous people to be represented in all aspects of the media, which is why she enjoys being involved in the 'lighter' end of journalism at Channel Nine. Pictured with Chris Hemsworth

Representation: Brooke added that it is important for Indigenous people to be represented in all aspects of the media, which is why she enjoys being involved in the ‘lighter’ end of journalism at Channel Nine. Pictured with Chris Hemsworth

Following her Australia Day comments, Brooke copped a fierce backlash from viewers, who voiced their opposition to her views on social media.   

‘Seriously stupid by you today,’ former Liberal MP Dennis Jensen wrote to Ms Boney in a since deleted tweet. 

‘Seriously, neither schools nor gaols existed prior settlement. And as for violence and rape only starting with settlement… speak to anthropologists about Indigenous violence pre-settlement, it was endemic.’ 

Controversy: Following her Australia Day comments, Brooke copped a fierce backlash from viewers, who voiced their opposition to her views on social media

Controversy: Following her Australia Day comments, Brooke copped a fierce backlash from viewers, who voiced their opposition to her views on social media 

Another Today viewer said: ‘I don’t see that changing the date will have any affect on aboriginal men going to jail or aboriginal women being raped. 

‘These are terrible acts and I wish things were different but they are not connected to January 26.’ 

However, Brooke had plenty of support, with one person writing ‘Brooke Boney smashing it as usual on a hard to talk about topic.’

‘Brooke just made more sense than anyone else I’ve heard talk about this issue. Maybe I could be persuaded to change my view,’ another wrote. 

During the show, Deborah Knight (left) applauded the panel for having a 'grown up conversation' about the issue, before Ms Gardner (right) thanked Ms Boney for her insight

During the show, Deborah Knight (left) applauded the panel for having a ‘grown up conversation’ about the issue, before Ms Gardner (right) thanked Ms Boney for her insight

Career: Before being hired by Channel Nine in late 2018, Brooke had worked for the ABC, SBS and Triple J, all of which are funded by the taxpayers

Career: Before being hired by Channel Nine in late 2018, Brooke had worked for the ABC, SBS and Triple J, all of which are funded by the taxpayers

Career: Before being hired by Channel Nine in late 2018, Brooke had worked for the ABC, SBS and Triple J, all of which are funded by the taxpayers 

Daily Mail UK

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Most Popular

To Top