Comedian Red Symons has apologised for a racist interview he conducted with an ABC colleague following nation-wide backlash against him.
Symons interviewed RN producer Beverley Wang, who is of Asian heritage, for his podcast last Monday and asked her questions, such as, “what’s the deal with Asians?” and “are you yellow?”.
The ABC pulled the interview from their website on Friday and this morning, Symons issued an official apology on his ABC radio Melbourne program.
“Last week on the program I spoke to Beverley Wang about her new podcast, It’s Not A Race,” he said.
“The plan was to take on a serious topic, race and culture, and talk with Beverley about a range of related issues.
“I came across as racist and I was wrong in the way I conducted the interview.
“This is not who I am, but I acknowledge on this occasion I caused offence and hurt, not only to Beverley but also to our listeners.
“I offer my sincerest apologies. We need to talk about these issues, but be careful how we consider them.”
Read more: Red Symons in hot water over ‘racist’ interview
The apology has done little to quell the conversation on social media though, with many still called for Symons to be sacked.
— ° (@H31441985) June 19, 2017
The ABC has not commented on whether Symons will be reprimanded for his comments, but says they are reviewing their editorial processes.
During the controversial interview, Symons berated Wang after asking about her family’s Taiwanese background and their move to Canada.
Symons: “Do they speak Mandarin or Cantonese?”
Wang: “Who’s ‘they’?”
Symons: “THE PEOPLE IN TAIWAN.”
Wang: “They speak Taiwanese and they speak Mandarin. And in Canada where I’m from, they speak English and French.”
Symons: “I knew that. You’re probably from the west coast of Canada.”
Wang: “Why do you think that, Red?”
Symons: “Because it’s closer to ASIA.”