In an editorial on his show, the Gold Logie winner called for viewers to stop the cycle of outrage and says the Today Extra host “isn’t evil” for taking her controversial stand.
“I could sit here and pull apart Sonia Kruger’s statement,” he said.
“I could point out that Japan has had its share of terror attacks, or that the UN has attributed Japan’s low crime rate to low inequality and low gun ownership. I could point out that if Sonia is afraid, logically, as a woman in Australia, she has a much higher chance of being murdered by a man she knows, than a Muslim from another country.
“And I could do all of this with the best intentions, but really, all I’d be doing is encouraging the inertia of outrage that spins the Gravitron that we’re all on. I’d be fuelling the same cycle that has led to absolutely horrendous personal attacks on Sonia in the last 24 hours.
“Sonia Kruger isn’t evil. She’s scared and she’s trying to make sense of the world. Yesterday, she admitted to not feeling safe. How do you think she feels now? And how do you expect her to react?”
Waleed went on to say there are two options to take when presented with an “outrageous opinion”: destruction or construction”.
“We can react emotionally, carelessly, and with little genuine critical thought, and we can destroy a perceived enemy in the hope that it will neutralise the threat that is making us feel unsafe,” he said. “This is the destructive choice.
“Or when we are presented with what we perceive as an outrageous opinion, we can consider what motivated that person, try to understand their fear, and empathise with how they came to their conclusion. The truth is, what motivates them, is fear. And fear is one thing we all share.”
Despite the fallout from her statements made on the Nine show, Sonia stands by her comments, posting on Twitter: “Following the atrocities of last week in Nice where 10 children lost their lives, as a mother, I believe it’s vital in a democratic society to be able to discuss these issues without automatically being labelled a racist.”