Former Today show star Tracy Vo was ‘disappointed’ after being on the receiving end of a racist attack at a café.
The 38-year-old was out with her partner Liam Connolly for breakfast, when a local Perth woman approached the pair, wanting to know where Tracy was ‘from’.
“She asked where I was ‘from’, and I replied ‘Australia’. I had the feeling already of where this was going, but I also genuinely wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt,” she told Nine News.
The woman demanded to know what Tracy’s ethnicity was, and then ‘turned’ on the reporter, labelling her family as ‘communists’.
“Then, turning to my partner Liam, who’s of Irish heritage, the woman said: 'Don’t be had by this Asian woman.' He politely asked the woman several times to move along,” she recalled.
While the star has experienced this type of racism before in her life, she said that her partner was “shocked” and in “protective mode”.
Tracy’s parents have been in Australia for 44 years, and she says while she’s not angry, she’s ‘disappointed’ that acts of racism like this still happen.
Taking to Twitter, Tracy highlighted the racist incident and said she didn’t let it ruin her day.
“To the lady who reminded us that intolerant and close-minded people still exist, sorry for ruining your day. When you tried to ruin a lovely breakfast I was having with my partner at our local cafe yesterday, you didn’t. When you labelled my family communists, I laughed it off,” her first tweet read.
“When you tried to convince my partner, who’s of Irish heritage, to “not be had by this Asian woman,” he politely asked you to move along. He was calm and I was smiling…sorry lady, we won’t be had by you,” she signed off.
Many of her followers offered support to Tracy, with some even sharing their own experiences.
“That’s cooked. Sorry to hear,” wrote politician Zak Kirk.
“I am so sorry you had to endure that! My partner is from Taiwan and is now an Australian citizen, passed the citizenship tests, took the pledge and pays his taxes. We are fortunate that we have not encountered anything like that yet and hope we never do,” another added.
“That’s horrendous. I’m sorry you had to experience that babe. Sending lots of love,” wrote fellow Channel Nine reporter Hannah Sinclair.
“People who say they can’t believe this happens today unfortunately really have no idea about the prejudice, unconscious bias and in many cases outright racism that exists. Glad that it didn’t ruin your day. Others in the same situation may not have been as strong to laugh it off,” a fourth told Tracy.
The star finished with a comment aimed at the woman: “I hope you find some peace, and learn from your comments.”
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