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May 7, 2007 | by  | in News |
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Visiting Professor Lectures on the Dangers of ‘Pale Hate’

Last week distinguished academic and human rights activist Albert ‘Alby’ Smith visited Victoria University, as part of a tour of New Zealand universities organized by Fight Albino Discrimination.

“People always give us a hard time,” Professor Smith explained. “Civil rights have progressed for people with too much melanin. The blacks in the States, for example, have been given the vote. But people with too little are often forgotten.”

Smith says New Zealand is not as bad as some other places. “I feel safe walking down the streets here. But pale hatred is on the rise. There are more evil albino representations in the media than ever. Take for example Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code. Sure, it was a popular film, but the damage that perpetuation of the ‘evil albino’ stereotype is doing to our fight is monumental.”

Although the lecture was generally well received, it was disrupted by a couple of light-to-medium pigmented students. “Here comes the Milky Bar Kid!” was offered in place of a greeting as Professor Smith walked into the lecture theatre. The heckling continued at him inappropriately at many points, before security removed the offenders. “You have to expect this kind of thing,” Smith commented, philosophically. “People are always afraid of what they don’t understand. That doesn’t justify it of course. I mean, people don’t understand why a lack of skin pigment leads to increased intelligence, but research is ongoing, and our natural intelligence hardly makes us more intimidating. They really have nothing to fear.”

One of the hecklers, Anna Seed, justified her actions after the event. “Universities have become the breeding ground for all kinds of ‘PC madness’.

Albinos are not being singled out here, it’s just the actions of a few with a chip on their shoulder. I mean, when it’s winter, we all look a bit pale eh? And it’s not like we get sunburnt inside.”

Smith is the author of some fairly controversial theories. One is that the growing ozone hole is in fact intentionally caused by producers of skincare products, in a conspiracy to rid the world of albinos, whose lack of skin pigmentation renders them more susceptible to sunburn. Dr Smith explained he had to wait until summer was over before visiting New Zealand, the country most exposed to the ozone hole in the world. “The risk of third degree burns from a simple walk down to the shops is a very real one,” he explained. “I’m not sure how I’m going to cope down in Dunedin. But it’s of the utmost importance that we explain the dangers of pale hatred before too many people fall prey to it.”

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Salient is a magazine. Salient is a website. Salient is an institution founded in 1938 to cater to the whim and fancy of students of Victoria University. We are partly funded by VUWSA and partly by gold bullion that was discovered under a pile of old Salients from the 40's. Salient welcomes your participation in debate on all the issues that we present to you, and if you're a student of Victoria University then you're more than welcome to drop in and have tea and scones with the contributors of this little rag in our little hideaway that overlooks Wellington.

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