The segment was called 'Watters' World: Chinatown Edition'

A Fox News segment called Watters’ World: Chinatown Edition has sparked controversy after mocking Asian stereotypes, resulting in the Asian-American community demanding an apology from the network.

Fox News reporter Jesse Waters filmed the segment in New York’s Chinatown, where he was interviewing people about the upcoming election.

The clip shows the reporter inappropriately asking Asian people if he should bow, as well as asking an Asian street vendor if his merchandise is illegal. Watters also was seen asking Asians if they know karate.



Bill O’Reilly, host of the show, said that the segment was “gentle fun”, but knew full well that the clip would cause controversy, admitting, “I know we’re going to get letters”.

Here are just a few of Watters’ controversial comments:

  • “Am I supposed to bow to say hello?”
  • “I like these watches. Are they hot?”
  • “Is it the year of the dragon? Rabbit? Who are you going to vote for?”
  • “So, China can keep ripping us off.”
  • “Tell me what’s not made in China.”
  • “Can you guys take care of North Korea for us?”
  • “Do they call Chinese food in China just food?”
  • “Do you know karate?”
  • “How do they dance in China?”
  • “When you go down to Chinatown, seemed like everybody is aware of what’s going on. Some people say it’s very insulated and they don’t interact with American politics, but it looked like everybody knew what was going on.”
  • “They’re such polite people. They won’t walk away or tell me to get out of here. They sit there and say nothing.”
  • “They’re patient. They want you to walk away because they don’t have anything else to do.”

The Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) has since called for an apology.

Paul Cheung, president of AAJA said in a statement that Fox News missed the opportunity to learn more about the Asian-American vote, which has not received significant coverage by mainstream news.

“It’s 2016. We should be far beyond tired, racist stereotypes and targeting an ethnic group for humiliation and objectification on the basis of their race. Sadly, Fox News proves it has a long way to go in reporting on communities of color in a respectful and fair manner.”

“There was nothing gentle or fun about it. It was rude, offensive, mocking, derogatory and damaging. Fox missed a real opportunity to investigate the Asian American vote, a topic not often covered in mainstream news.”

Whilst no formal apology has yet been issued by the network, reporter Jesse Watters tweeted that the segmetn was “tounge-in-cheek” and that he regrets “if anyone found offense”.

Cheung has since responded to Watters.

“It’s one thing to be “tongue-in-cheek.” It is something entirely different to hide behind the guise of political humor while using racial stereotypes.”

“The AAJA MediaWatch team reviewed two other “Watters’ World” segments — one on millennials and the other on role of  race in Philadelphia.  Although both segments might indeed be “tongue-in-cheek,” neither was as blatantly racist as the Chinatown segment.”

“Watters interviewed people for whom English is obviously not their primary language, raising ethical concerns of whether they were aware of how they would be portrayed.”

Twitter users have taken to the platform to express their disapproval of the clip too. Fresh Off The Boat star Constance Wu simply labelled the network as “idiots”, whilst the aptly named Angry Asian Man said “it’s racist. It’s Fox News.”

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