Migrant Tales will begin to publish Finnish tabloid ads* (lööppi in Finnish) from the 1990s. Taking into account that Finland’s immigrant population started to grow during that decade, it is easy at least through the main stories of tabloids like Ilta-Sanomat and Iltalehti to see how they reflected some people’s xenophobic and racist views.
We apologize to readers for the racist and xenophobic content of the material. Our intention is not to spread these social ills but to exposed it.
The tabloid ad below has a picture of Liisa Kulhia, a populist MP (1983-87) who defected from the Center Party. In the ad below, the politician vows to discipline the Russian mafia and Somalis. Supposedly this type of populist baloney aimed at further victimizing Somalis by suggesting they were in the same league as the Russian mafia.
At the time, the term refugee, never mind Somali refugee, had a very negative meaning. Some Finns saw immigrants as refugees.
As a social illness, xenophobia and racism leave open wounds and scars on society. We don’t have to search far to find them because they exist right under our noses. Xenophobia and racism leave lots of witnesses. The only question is if we want to hear their evidence in society’s witness box.
*Migration Institute archive.