Posts Tagged: Minorities

Anonymous: Do not be silent!

When you are silent, everyone does whatever they want, and you have encouraged them with your silence. Do not be silent, if someone is oppressed in your presence and you are silent, you have helped the oppressor, you have supported him with your silence. Do not be silent, speak, you distinguish good from bad, you

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A Migrant Tales style guide to writing about migration: avoid words that hide our racism and denial

After over twenty years in journalism and writing for some of the world’s most prestigious publications and having worked as a foreign correspondent in countries like Finland, Italy, Colombia, and others, I have learned a thing or two about journalistic style and correctness. On top of my journalistic experience, I am a sociologist who has

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Helsingin Sanomat editorial on the police service and media raises questions

According to a new survey on the police service, an editorial in Finland’s largest daily Helsingin Sanomat claims today that trust in the police runs high, even if the survey showed that confidence in the police had fallen by four percentage points to 91%. The editorial also puts in a favorable word for the media, which it

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Shirlene Green Newball (Part 2/3): A list of some black female writers you should read

Shirlene Green Newball* In 2011, former President Barack Obama gave Maya Angelou the Presidential Medal of Freedom. A year later, it was presented to Toni Morrison (1931-2019), an icon of the black literature in the United States of America. She was born in Lorain, Ohio, being the second of four children from a middle African

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White Finnish media story of the day*: Use words that promote inclusion and public spaces to people of color and other minorities

A headline in a Helsingin Sanomat news story about US President Donald Trump’s racist tweets to “the Squad,” four progressive women elected to congress in 2018, highlights how the media racializes non-white people in Finland. While the story uses the Finnish News Agency (STT) and AFP as sources, the copy editors at Helsingin Sanomat could

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Pressiklubi gives simplistic, apologetic view on how the Finnish media is “more balanced” today when writing about non-white Finns

It is surprising to hear how some politicians and journalists continue to have simplistic and apologetic views of racism and bigotry in this country. If YLE’s Päivi Happonen and Atte Kaleva’s words are to be believed on Pressiklubi, the Finnish media has finally woken up and writes more balanced stories about migrants and minorities that live in Finland. 

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Helsingin Sanomat survey on migrants reveals expectations that adaption in Finland is and will be a one-way process

Finland’s largest daily, Helsingin Sanomat, published a survey Friday about the minimum requirements that foreigners should adapt to if living here. Seventy-seven percent fully agreed that white Finns should be able to shake hands with both sexes. The survey showed as well that 52% were against women’s-only swimming hours and that 37% felt that one should bathe naked in the sauna. 

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Defining white Finnish privilege #34: Building a political career on privilege and nativist nationalism

Social Democrat MP Satu Taavitsainen found herself in a lot of hot water this week after she published a picture of herself in Instagram wearing a fake Sámi dress. While this is a no-no because minorities like the Sámi may see it as cultural appropriation, an MP like Taavitsainen should know better.

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Eva Biaudet: Finland’s ever-culturally and ethnically diverse society in the new century (Part I)

Swedish People’s Party (SPP) MP Eva Biaudet has made a name for herself defending those that don’t have a voice in society and those who are most vulnerable to discrimination and exploitation. If there is a person that can give a picture of where Finland is or should be heading in this century as our country becomes ever-culturally and ethnically diverse, that person is certainly Biaudet.

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What’s the difference between a migrant rapist and a white Finnish rapist?

Any sensible person condemns what happened on Monday, when a woman was gang raped by a group of teenagers in the northern Helsinki neighborhood of Tapanila. Some voices, notably the most anti-immigration voices, are demanding an apology from the Somali community. One Somali woman, Ujuni Ahmed, apologized on behalf of the whole community on Helsingin Sanomat

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Racism and time

Racism is harmful because it robs you of one of your most important things in life: time.  In the same way that Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer (1836-70) asked in a poem where sighs, tears and love go,* do we know where time goes after it’s used up?  Since humans are social animals, attack and prey on others

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Julian Abagond: nation of immigrants

Migrant Tales insight: Finland is a nation of emigrants, not of immigrants. Even so, the same structures that have kept intact the structures and systemic exploitation of minorities, slavery and Jim Crow are still alive and kicking despite the fact that we try to convince ourselves that the United States is a nation of immigrants. 

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Migrant Tales (July 3, 2014): Is ‘Heikki the drunk’ Finnish or Swedish?

Migrants’ Tales insight: This story is interesting when looking at the Fazer gigolo tv commercial in Finland, which reinforces stereotypes about certain migrants and minorities in this country. An all-white board of the Council of Ethics in Advertising, which gets all of its funding from the private sector, will have a difficult time understanding what

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Time warp Fazer of Finland: Stereotyping Mediterranean “gigolos” to sell salt licorice

I was surprised to see Fazer, a Finnish foodservice company, advertising salt licorice on television with the help of a 1980s stereotype of a Southern European gigolo  who speaks Finnish with a me-Tarzan-you-Jane accent.  Migrant Tales sent an email to Fazer Monday morning about the ad but never got a reply. I did, however, get in touch

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Apparently few migrants and minorities attended the National Sports Forum

Some claim that one of the problems that migrants and minorities face in Finland is that they are underrepresented in different associations.  Last Sunday, the National Sports Forum held a meeting in Helsinki to talk about the future of sports in Finland. Gathering from the picture below, it’s clear that few migrants and minorities were

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Is Heikki the drunk Finnish or Swedish?

Some Swedish Finns are up in arms about a children’s book published in Sweden that pictures a wino called Heikki, according to YLE in English.  The character in the book, who is lying in a bush next to a plastic bag full of beer, was too much for Swedish Finn Sirpa Lamminpää, who filed a

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Julian Abagond: What did race have to do with the George Zimmerman case?

By Julian Abagond What did race have to do with the George Zimmerman case in America?George Zimmerman, a half-white, half-Latino man who gets a bloody nose and a few scratches on his head, shoots dead Trayvon Martin, an unarmed, 17-year-old black boy, calls it self-defence and is found “not guilty” of both murder and manslaughter

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guardian.co.uk: France’s minorities under fire

The recent local elections in France witnessed not only increased pressure from the extreme right National Front (FN), but also division within the conservative party in power, the UMP, which fluctuated uncertainly between an alliance with the FN and one with the opposition parties. As for the left, it can hardly be seen as a credible alternative. The situation for minorities in France has therefore become more than difficult. It has become critical.

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