OPINION: I am not a fan of the term "casual racism".
That is because there is no such thing as casual racism. There is only one kind of racism and that's vile racism,
Mia Griffiths was racially abused doing her job as a waitress.
The 17-year-old was belittled by one guy and says his mates laughed at her.
Tonight on The Project it was heart-breaking to hear her say it made her feel ashamed of being Māori.
- 'The whole table was laughing at me': Teenage waitress racially abused by Auckland Viaduct restaurant customer
- James Hardie hammered with abuse after racist customer story
Well of course, Mia has nothing to be ashamed of.
She should of course be really proud of herself. She has handled this with a beautiful courage and to me she represents a modern New Zealand.
It was an honour to have Mia and her father Jim in the audience on the show tonight.
I want to give a shout-out to Jim Griffiths an ordinary bloke from Onehunga who was picking Mia up from work that night.
When she told him what had happened he did a U-turn and tried to go back to talk to the racist and the crew from James Hardie. They had left by the time they got back.
What a nice caring man Jim is. Jim is a real man, Jim is a real Kiwi, and Jim is a real dad unlike the absolute vile coward who abused his daughter and the cowards who stood by at the table.
So thank you Mia and thank you Jim for showing us what real Kiwis are - caring and courageous.