Jeremy Mansfield's refugee comments stir outrage

2015-09-20 14:37

Johannesburg - Popular radio personality Jeremy Mansfield has caused an outrage on social media following a Facebook post in which he questioned why refugees can arrive in Europe without going through arduous visa application processes.

The post on September 17 read: ''I am looking at images on SkyNews of imigrants [sic] trying to make their way into Europe. They all seem to be males and children. Where are the females? Are the Arab states exporting their problem? Is this a way of exporting their religion to Europe? As a member of the Commonwealth and a property owner who pays tax in the UK I still have to buy a visa as a result of Home Affairs bungling. Anyone from a muslim [sic] state gets free entry. I pay.''

The backlash on Facebook and Twitter was instant.

A Facebook user wrote: ''People like you truly disgust me with your pathetic whining about having to get a visa to visit your property in the UK of which obviously you are not a citizen I'm happy to say. I can only surmise you're an exponent of the apartheid era. Good luck with that.'' 

Others posted: ''I wish God puts u in a situation one day where u have to fight for the safety of ur family!''
and ''What an awful way of thinking I can only hope that you will find compassion one day, it's much better than hate.''

The next day [on Friday] Mansfield posted about how excited he was to spend ''5 weeks of rugby bliss'' for the Rugby World Cup.

A little later in the day he posted: ''Wow! Just seen the abuse from people who disagree with my post on the Syrian crisis. You don't have to read what I post. You can ignore what I say, just as I choose to ignore your vicious comments back."

But Facebookers and some fans continued to round on him and one another over the flood of refugees trying to leave Syria, many drowning in overloaded boats, as they made for European territories.

A call to the nation to stand together for the Springboks ahead of their disastrous World Cup opener against Japan did not stop the comments and people continued expressing their anger with rants such as ''You racist imbecile''.

Mansfield tried to draw on his charity work to defend himself as not being racist and heartless but by 22:27 on September 18, he backed off with: ''I have taken note of the anger about my comments on refugees. I accept they have offended many people. I sincerely apologize unreservedly and withdraw them.''

Twitter users responded:

And:

By Saturday morning he was ready to throw in the towel on Facebook saying: ''Even an apology is not accepted. I have not had as much abuse thrown at me for doing the right thing. I have never been called a racist bigot so many times. I don't need this abuse from people I don't even know. Maybe I should just close this page down and ignore the world.''

Facebookers had still not forgiven him but he kept his profile running - sticking only to rugby.




Read more on:    migrants  |  racism

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.