Matias Turkkila, the editor of the Perussuomalinen newspaper and founding member of Hommaforum, reinforced on Friday’s A-studio: Stream talk show on hate speech what we always knew: some Finns have serious problems in tolerating others who are different from them.
The whole debate surrounding hate speech, freedom of expression and what these two matters are becomes clouded when we justify intolerance indirectly as Turkkila does on the program.
Watch A-studio: Stream here.
Turkkila, who was present at the talk show with Green Party MP Jani Toivola and Internet policeman Marko Forss, attempted to justify hate speech without even admitting that his own role at Hommaforum and close cooperation with Perussuomalaiset (PS) MP Jussi Halla, who was convicted for ethnic agitation, are some of the causes for the rise of hate speech and intolerance in Finland.
Like so many who lobby for greater intolerance in our society, Turkkila has justified his actions with sanitized arguments.
“The debate over immigration began in 2005 or 2006 with the Mohammed cartoon scandal and how the Finnish media practiced total self-censorship,” he said on A-studio: Stream. “The media atmosphere was [at the time] quite positive to immigration and multiculturalism. On top of this, YLE was, for some odd reason, legally required to promote multiculturalism.”
Turkkila continues: “Many [Finns] saw that their fears and concerns about immigration weren’t being heard [by the state], not even about radical Islam. Those that brought up these matters were labelled racists…”
How can Turkkila claim that Finland’s media was pro-immigration at the time? What proof does he have?
It’s pretty clear that Finland’s media has had racism issues starting from what it writes or doesn’t care to write about the Romany minority of Finland. If this isn’t sufficient proof, one has only to look at what the tabloid billboards of the 1990s wrote, when the first Somali refugees moved to Finland.
If one wishes, we could even go back to the 1930s and 1940s to see the racist manner blacks were portrayed by the Finnish media.
The statement made by Turkkila, that Hommaforum, politicians like Halla-aho, James Hirvisaari and others were an answer to people’s concern over immigration and radical Islam, is ludicrous. In plain English they were like the US American Nazi Party’s or Ku Klux Klan’s answer to white racism in the South.
So much hatred has been thrown at Finland’s immigrant community by websites like Hommaforum and some PS politicians that there is nothing that will stop our ever-culturally diverse society from growing.
A significant part of the problem is Hommaforum and the PS, which will do everything possible to ensure that immigrants never get treated and are accepted as equals to white Finns.