A petition against the Watters' World segment garnered almost 20,000 signatures in under 96 hours
An executive producer from Fox News’ O’Reilly Factor will meet with AAJA and community leaders to discuss the racist Chinatown segment from Watters’ World.
The meeting follows the backlash that was incurred after a Fox News segment called Watters’ World: Chinatown Edition mocked Asian stereotypes. The Asian-American community has since demanded an apology from the network.
The clip shows reporter Jesse Watters 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.
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.”
Additionally, a petition led by Reappropriate that demanded an apology from the network garnered almost 20,000 signatures in less than 96 hours. The petition, which was sent to Fox News headquarters, contained over 220 pages showing thousands of the petition’s supporters.
O’Reilly himself had said that he was too busy with the presidential election to edit the clip before it was aired, “there were a few things in there I felt were over the line. The old lady, I would have taken that out. I should have seen it before, but I’m so busy with the election that I didn’t.”
AAJA responded by saying, “We, at the Asian American Journalists Association, do not accept being busy with the election coverage as an adequate excuse to allow a racist segment to air. Not having time to edit what was “over the line” is a reflection of a lack of sensitivity toward diverse coverage.”
In the latest update to the controversy, an executive producer has agreed to meet with AAJA and community leaders according to AAJA’s website. The date of the meeting has not been decided yet but the private meeting will take place at New York City’s Museum of Chinese in America.
AAJA have encouraged the public to share their thoughts about what they want from the meeting by posting in the public Facebook group “This is 2016“.