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Czech broadcasting body says tv station spread hatred against Romani people

Prague, 9.3.2013 21:12, (ROMEA)

The Czech Council for Radio and Television Broadcasting (Rada pro rozhlasové a televizní vysílání - RRTV) has warned the TV Barrandov station (Barrandov Televizní Studio a.s.) that it has broken the law in its broadcasting. The violation reportedly occurred during the program "Joke for CZK 100" (Vtip za stovku) on 20 February 2013 at 20:00.

The program included the following joke:

A guy decides to have himself frozen for 10 years. So he does that, and 10 years later he gets out and decides to go with his friends for a beer, and he asks: "What happened during the last 10 years?"

"Well, nothing, just that they legalized hunting Gypsies, so we can shoot them dead now."

So they go on a hunt, pull out their guns, and see a Gypsy rooting through a garbage can. They aim, they fire, the Gypsy falls dead to the ground. The guy is going for his trophy when a police officer says to him: "Sir, that will be CZK 10 000."

The guy says: "What do you mean? It's legal!"

"Well, yes," says the cop, "but they're protected when they're at a feeder."

RRTV believes Televize Barrandov violated its obligation to ensure that the programs it broadcasts do not incite hatred on the basis of membership in an ethnic or national minority. "In the joke at issue, behavior which completely violates fundamental human rights is cynically portrayed as normal, justified or even progressive, and it can be inferred that the joke-teller implicitly supports such behavior. The joke cannot be considered a humorous reflection on deep-rooted racism, because it does not take the form of satire. The behavior portrayed is not being caricatured, ironized, or made fun of. The joke also humiliates a particular ethnic minority, reducing them to the level of animals or even lower (animals do not use garbage cans as feeders) and indirectly approves of genocidal behavior. It can therefore incite hatred on the basis of membership in an ethnic or national minority," the RRTV writes in its press release.

The Council has established a deadline of seven days from the date on which the warning was delivered for the broadcaster to correct its error. The full press release of the RRTV is available (in Czech only) here: http://www.rrtv.cz/cz/files/press/TZ_05_13.pdf

František Kostlán, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Aktuality, Média, Medializace, Menšiny, Lidská práva, zprávy, Romové, Cigáni, Šíření nenávisti a nesnášenlivosti, Czech republic, Entertainment, news, Racism, Roma



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