Kyle Sandilands is criticized for comments to the Aboriginal singer on Australian Idol: “I love you Kyle, but please stop.”
- Royston Sagigi-Baira from Australian Idol performed on the show
- Sandilands, one of the judges, said it was ‘magnificent’
- He said he knew his ‘journey’ as he knows other Aborigines.
Radio star Kyle Sandilands has received some criticism after comments to Australian Idol finalist Royston Sagigi-Baira following a performance on the show.
Sandilands, who is a judge alongside Harry Connick Jr, Meaghan Trainor and Amy Shark, told the 24-year-old indigenous Australian he knew about ‘his journey’ because he has Aboriginal relatives.
‘A lot of people don’t know this about me but my half brother and half sister are indigenous and my sister also has three or four foster children aboriginal and I know your journey and it’s not always an easy journey but you have shined like a brilliant. son in this scenario every time,’ Kyle said.
But many indigenous viewers said Kyle’s comments to engage with the singer made them feel uncomfortable.
‘Just no! As a light-skinned Wiradjuri woman, I have no idea of the struggles my dark-skinned sister faces every day,” one said.
‘No matter the color of the skin, how can you know this person’s journey when he is a stranger to you? What are degrading statements? said another.
“Trust a narcissistic person to bounce back when a person of color is having their moment in the spotlight,” said another.
“I’m sure it’s a real struggle in his Bentley,” added a fourth.
A sixth said: ‘I feel so uncomfortable when people start doing this. What do you want a medal?
Another stated: ‘He may know of the journey of our people, but not the actual journey or the tribulations from actual experiences.’
Kyle’s comments caused a stir on social media with many calling them “uncomfortable.”
Sandilands called Royston’s performance “magnificent” and later said she understood his journey because his half-siblings and “three or four” of his sister’s foster children are Aboriginal.
“I love you Kyle but please stop,” wrote another. “I have black and Asian friends and I still don’t know about their journey.”
Known for his outspokenness on the radio, Sandilands has a colorful history as a judge on the show: he once told Indian Australian Idol star Jessica Mauboy to “lose your jelly belly”.
He was fired from the show in 2009 because the producers felt his edgy Kyle and Jackie O radio show on KIISFM was incompatible with the family theme of the show, but they rehired him due to his popularity.
Sandilands called Royston’s most recent performance that earned him a spot in the final three “magnificent”.
‘You are one in a million. People love you,’ she said.
Royston will compete with Phoebe Stewart and Josh Hannan in the Australian Idol grand finale.
Phoebe Stewart, Josh Hannan and Royston will compete in the Australian Idol grand finale