Czech police use dehumanizing terms if incidents involve Romani people, the media parrot them - and then pogroms begin
The regional network of the Deník.cz news server has held a stable position as one of the most-read publications in the Czech Republic, and when it reports about Romani people, it goes as far as it can in the use of stereotypes, including publishing content that baits them. This "tradition" has now been upheld by the Přerov edition, which has published an article about two men who scuffled in public there on 15 July (the article was headlined "Romská bitka na přerovském náměstí, potyčka se strhla u cukrárny" - "Romani battle on Přerov square, skirmish breaks out near confectioner's").
Local police response, understandably, has to be mentioned by this coverage. "At our operations center we received several phone calls about a brawl among inadaptables outside a confectioners' in the center of town. The permanent staff on duty aimed the CCTV cameras there and began to deploy patrols," Miroslav Komínek, Deputy Director of the Municipal Police in Přerov, described their intervention to Deník.cz.
"The presence of the patrols again enraged the quarrelling clans, whose members attacked each other, causing a great ruckus. After the patrol members used tear gas, the two parties separated and the situation gradually began to calm down," the Deputy Director told the daily, adding that the patrol members remained at the scene for several dozen minutes afterward until it was entirely calm.
What basically happened was that two individuals got angry with each other and fought each other physically. A third person did his best to separate them.
Can you imagine how the Czech media would report on a brawl between two men - and there are many such incidents here, day in and day out - if they had not been Romani? Or rather, "inadaptables", if we are to remain faithful to the Přerov edition's description?
By using that term, the Deputy Director of the local police is sending a message to the news consumers that the brawlers were "inadaptables", not "decent" people, and the journalist willingly parrots that vocabulary. Information about a brawl between two ethnic Czech men would not be worth reporting, but an altercation between two darker-skinned people - which, for the journalist and the local police, is automatically evidence that they are "inadaptables" - is too tempting to ignore.
This kind of baiting of the Roma is a tried-and-true tactic for increasing readership, and has been for years. If you say and write that this was allegedly a clash between "clans" (without providing evidence), then that's even more eye-catching.
"Look at this, wow, two cikánské gangs just beat up all of Přerov," is how the gossips will embellish this news to "improve" upon it. Not long ago, in that very same part of the country, such "information" was a component of an anti-Romani campaign that drove ordinary citizens into the streets who did not hesitate to demonstrate alongside neo-Nazis and to shout anti-Romani slogans together with them.
Many people even invented accounts of having been mugged by Romani people which, in that upset atmsophere, resulted in more mass demonstrations and another dosage of hate against Romani people. Do we actually want those times to come back just so a media company can turn a higher profit?
- Czech Internet users fall for ultra-right disinformation parody - and instead of laughing, they lash out
- Commentary: Romani actors should boycott Czech cop show over antigypsyist content
- Chair of the Pirate Party in the Czech Republic stands up for Romani activist assaulted by hateful attackers
- Czech racists physically assault Romani activist Jozef Miker while shouting antigypsyist abuse
- Commentary: CNN Prima begins its Czech-language broadcasting with stereotypes about Romani people
- Czech media falsely accuse Romani mourners of breaking the law after cemetery employee calls police
- Volunteer civil society members of Czech Govt Roma Council: ombudsman intentionally undermining the dignity of Romani people
- Czech ombudsman criticizes draft Roma Strategy, rejects idea of updating information about compensation for forced sterilizations
- Czech racists hated Vodafone Christmas ad featuring non-white children, the company objects to their online comments
- Scandalous fourth acquittal by Czech court of racist football fans accused of assaulting Black man on tram
- Czech court gives suspended sentence to adults who assaulted young Romani children physically and verbally in a park last year
- German court sentences terrorist who attacked Halle synagogue last year to life in prison
- Racists in Czech capital assault non-white family, call the father "Cikán", give the Nazi salute, try to take their baby
- Older Romani woman recounts how security guards in Czech shop saved her from violent racist thug
- Bulgarian COVID-19 pandemic measures have closed Romani neighborhoods, causing job losses and food shortages
- Romani politicians: Slovak court's judgment in case of police abuse of children is unacceptable
- Slovenian scandal when weekly close to PM says God sent COVID-19 to "protect whites from corruption"
- Czech Republic: Further action needed to integrate Roma children in schools and prevent discrimination against LGBTI persons