Why would a television station like MTV3 invite a person like Perussuomalaiset (PS)* Youth leader Sebastian Tynkkynen to a talk show about the racist and bigoted statements he’s made about Muslims and migrants? Why would a journalist, who appears to be in the dark about what racism is, treat such a politician with a degree of understanding?
The only answer I can come up with is that the national media continues to be lost about a social ill like racism. It is not only lost about how adversely racism and bigotry impact our society but gives such social ills its tacit approval.
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Offering bigotry, racism and stereotypes the opportunity to showcase themselves as something “normal” is like being a surgeon. Say the patient has a heart condition but instead the surgeon decides to castrate the person. It’s the wrong diagnosis for the problem. Inviting Tynkkynen to give his opinions about cultural diversity is similar to the example of the surgeon.
The fact that a person like Tynkkynen can freely label all Muslims terrorists or potential terrorists on a TV talk show is racist. The claim that asylum seekers only come to Finland to live off social welfare and don’t want to become members of our society is racist. All of this became clear in the MTV3 interview.
Some of the incredible and false claims that the PS Youth leader made in the interview are no different from those made by parties like the xenophobic Danish People’s Party, Sweden Democrats, Geert Wilders’ Freedom Party or that of the Front National of France to name just a few.
A “classic” soundbite you’ll hear over and over again by these types of parties is that people from the Middle East and Africa can never adapt to our way of life. This is code for “then my racism and hatred is justified.”
I wish journalists and politicians wouldn’t be so disingenuous about their ignorance and do their jobs more thoroughly.
Tynkkynen and MTV3 reveal that we’re still light years away in Finland from living in a society where cultural diversity is respected instead of being scorned and constantly checkmated by opportunist politicians.
* 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. The direct translation of “Perussuomalaiset” is “basic” or “fundamental Finn.”