Interior Minister Paula Risikko and National Police Commissioner Seppo Kolehminen are the great pretenders about racism

by , under Enrique Tessieri

I seem to be what I’m not you see.

The Platters – The great pretender

The recent scandal that came to light of a secret racist Facebook group comprising of about 2,800 police officials reveals everything about what racism is and how it survives in Finland. A big chunk of that racism is denial and playing down the social ill by public officials.

The Platters published a classic song in the 1950s called “The great pretender.”

While the lyrics of the song apply to a person in love, it applies perfectly to how Interior Minister Paula Risikko and National Commissioner Seppo Kolehminen “pretend” that racism and bigotry aren’t issues in the Finnish police service.

The Platters’ song is about a lover that lives in a bubble. Risikko and Kolehminen live in bubbles about Finland’s racism and bigotry problem in the police service.

Interior Minister Paula Risikko giving the thumbs up in February to a group of far-right Finland First demonstrators.

Most of the Finnish media pretends as well. A classic example of that denial is even if one third of the police force was a member of the secret Facebook group, racism isn’t an issue in that institution.

It is and the scoop by Long Play over the weekend not only reminds us of the social ills facing the police but the whole society as well. The story exposes as well our lame response to it.

Racism in the police service didn’t just appear out of the blue in the secret Facebook group but has been around for a very long time.

The interesting matter to watch now is what Risikko’s and Kolehminen’s response will be. Will they offer excuses and denials or take tough action?

It’s high time that we stop pretending that racism isn’t a problem in this country.

The sooner we do, the sooner we’ll be able to do something about it.

The recent scandal shows that urgency is needed.