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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

CBS News - Controversial Racial Comment

CBS News is hiding the fact that they made a controversial racial comment on their news program in regards to their story titled: "A Critical Study on Chinese Food" dated on March 21, 2007.

The comment mentioned near the end of the news segment is when the reporter was sitting with other "health experts" and one mentioned that omitting certain ingredients from the Chinese food items that are high in sodium and fat would be beneficial.

The female reporter jokingly mentioned that restaurant cooks would "spit" in their food for omitting certain ingredients. The reporter and her guests laughed at the comment.

"Why is this controversial? I believe that her comment is malicious by using the stereotype that all Chinese restaurants are dirty and therefore employees will "spit" in your food. Also to note, the CW channel in New York was under controversy by the folks of AsianWeek for controversial comments by claiming that rodents are the meat product in the New Food King restaurant. Read the AsianWeek article here.

CBS is trying to cover-up this problem by hiding their videos online from public view.

On YouTube: The video is now locked down for invite only.
Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8XelwHIfurk
Description of video: "A consumer watchdog group released a report on Chinese food, claiming that some dishes are packed with an enormous amount of calories and sodium. Sharyn Alfonsi has more details. (CBSNews.com)"

Also, it was deleted off the CBS website:

CBS then tries to cover-up their mess-up by making new stories about the Chinese food unhealthy problem. Their technique, get a female reporter into a "healthier" Chinese take-out establishment and use Teri Okita who has an Asian American background to fix their problem.

Oh yeah, the original reporter is white and the guests weren't Asian (not to be racist or anything like that, but I think you should be aware of that).

I've spoke with some of my fellow Ethnic Studies grad students, and they think it's not offensive, but I think others would disagree. Also, why would CBS cover-up this problem by trying to erase the videos? Why is it still on Youtube (CBS has an agreement with Youtube to publish their news reports and other TV show vids), but only for invites? And you would think, well the news story has been there for a week, they must delete them. Actually not true, the CBS video area on Youtube holds videos from over two months ago! The story was posted just a week ago. See their vid archive here: http://www.youtube.com/profile_videos?user=CBS

Why is the video link still on CBSnews.com? Take a look at the search results on their website here, do you see that the story marked "March 23, 2007" is outright blank (versus the others that have a text summary), with a clickable dash ("-") link that goes to a dead video?

A lot of questions, but no answers.

Let's summarize my rants:
You make me sick. Just another TV program on my personal banned list: KRON news, and now CBS News.

Here's the actual words the reporter said:
Sharyn Alfonsi: "And if you special order and say sauce on the side, they are not going to spit in your food."
Male health expert: Exactly... absolutely, [female health expert chuckling] that would save some work for them.
Female health expert: [chuckling]
Sharyn Alfonsi: And could stop you from getting a Buddha belly, Sharyn Alfonsi, CBS News, New York."

If you want to HEAR the clip, contact me with your e-mail in the comments section of this blog.

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