Migrant Tales’ 2015 Hall of Spot-On Journalism

by , under Enrique Tessieri

Migrant Tales’ 2015 Hall of Poor and Sloppy Journalism has been updated throughout the year. Too many stories that appear in the Finnish media exemplify poor and sloppy journalism, especially when they cover racism and our ever-growing culturally diverse society. The editorial published below by Lahti-based Etelä-Suomen Sanomat is a rare example of spot-on journalism in Finland. 

To see examples of poor and shoddy journalism in Finland about cultural diversity, please go to this link.

September 18

 Häpeäksi Lahdelle – (Etelä-Suomen Sanomat)

What’s so good about this editorial?  Kalle Aaltonen is a Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party Lahti city councilman who likes to spread anti-immigration rhetoric to get attention. Each insult that he throws appears to boomerang back to him with a provocation. On Wednesday, he appeared to accept the latest challenge. He didn’t find a new provocation that challenged him but probably the last nail on his political coffin. He wrote on his Facebook page that the Red Cross could go “f**k itself as well as all of you other wankers who have made it possible/permitted Finns’ kindness and taxes to be misused.” The PS will decide Wednesday whether to sack Aaltonen from the party. In the face of these irresponsible statements by a city councilman, Etelä-Suomen Sanomat took leadership and denounced Aaltonen’s latest rant. Too often we’ve seen the opposite in Finland when the national media incorrectly believes that by not noticing racism and politicians like Aaltonen racism will go away.

Apart from telling the Lahti city councilman that what he said was unbecoming of a politician and defending the important role that the Red Cross plays in managing the record number of asylum seekers in Finland, the last paragraph of the editorial is spot on:

“Perussuomalaiset party secretary Riitta Slunga-Poutsalo has described Aaltonen’s behavior as idiotic.  There’s not much we can add to that. Aaltonen’s coarse language is not only a shame to himself and to the Perussuomalaiset [party] but to the whole city council and through it to the city of Lahti. If Aaltonen is incapable of making the right decision others will have to do it on his behalf.”

Näyttökuva 2015-12-20 kello 10.27.13

The Finnish name for the Finns Party is the Perussuomalaiset (PS). The English names of the party adopted by the PS, like True Finns or Finns Party, promote in our opinion nativist nationalism and xenophobia. We, therefore, prefer to use the Finnish name of the party on our postings.