MT Media Monitoring: A government partnership between Kokoomus and the PS would be a hammer blow to us

by , under Enrique Tessieri

Politicians and parties expel a lot of blah blah. Ask this question: Will matters improve for Finland’s racialized communities if the PS and Kokoomus partner in a government? There’s your answer with no blah blah.

A recent story by MTV, a private television channel with a streak of Fox News, published a story about what some National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) leaders thought about forming a government with the anti-immigration Perussuomalaiset (PS)*.

Finland will hold parliamentary elections in April, and considering that Kokoomus and the PS are the biggest opposition parties, with the former leading in opinion polls, future cooperation in a Kokoomus-led government is naturally a topic of speculation.

For some, a government led by Kokoomus and the PS would bring a lot of social hardship, especially to migrants and minorities. Read the full story (in Finnish) here.

Even so, the MTV story reveals many ugly truths about how the Finnish media treats its ever-growing culturally diverse communities with disregard. It is an example of whitewash journalism that avoids asking essential questions.

Even if MTV did not care to bring up what a partnership between Kokoomus and the PS would have on our racialized communities in Finland, Migrant Tales is obliged to do so. Moreover, the television station did not even attempt to answer what extreme cost-saving measures would affect people’s lives.

While the story only mentions labor migrants twice, it sidelines the topic effectively and brushes it under the rug.

Although without the same obsessive zeal, Kokoomus is also inflicted by racism. In its black-and-white world, there are “undesirable” migrants, asylum seekers, Muslims, people of color, and “desirable” ones like cheap, obedient, easily exploitable labor.

Let’s look at some of Purra’s quotes and ask after reading them why MTV did not even bother to bring them up:

  • “If it were up to me, the Perussuomalaiset will never form part of a government
    that does not successfully [and] significantly tighten Finnish immigration policy;”
  • Aims to scrap dual citizenship rights and raise citizenship requirements from five to 10 years;
  • Total rejection of Muslim asylum seekers to Finland even at the cost of ditching international agreements and human rights obligations;
  • Constant attacks against cultural diversity by labeling Others as incompatible, irreparable, and hopeless problems;
  • Much whing about “multiculturalism” but little on solutions.

These are just a few toxic and racist comments spread by Purra and the PS with the tacit and silent approval of Kokoomus, which prefers to speak of “good” migrants and leaves “undesirable” migrants to the fate of unruly and anonymous mobs led by the PS.

None of the Kokoomus politicians, party leader Petteri Orpo, vice presidents Antti Hakkane, Elina Valtonen, or parliamentary group leader Kay Mykkänen, raised any objections about the toxic language used by Purra to label all migrants viciously.

The MTV story sidelines essential questions and, by default, gives tacit approval to our hostile environment of migrants. Why didn’t they interview a member of the racialized community and ask what a PS-Kokoomus government would imply for his or her life?

The story sadly reveals how little power and disregard the media and politicians have for people who live here and aren’t white Finns.