Ann Coulter’s insistence that “Mandarins” is an appropriate term for Asian Americans and Representative Peter King’s use of an anti-Japanese American term sparks community action to speak up to the news industry.
The National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA) and 22 other Asian American groups issued an open letter to MSNBC, CNN and FOX expressing troubling concerns on how the AAPI community is characterized in network news and the lack of Asian American and Pacific Islander voices in the programs.
“We write this joint letter to express our concerns regarding the representation of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community on your cable news networks. Collectively, CNN, MSNBC and Fox reach more than 3.5 million primetime viewers per day, and recent events raise troubling questions about how the AAPI community is characterized on your networks and underscore the lack of inclusion of Asian American and Pacific Islander voices on your programming.”
At the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA), we know news organizations need to represent multiple viewpoints — and sometimes those viewpoints will be controversial. But AAJA challenges networks and their anchors to call it out when a guest uses a derogatory term.
By allowing guests to use antiquated terms that demean Asian Americans, journalists are being complicit in allowing slurs and misrepresentation to persist.
We encourage news organizations to diversify their choice of guests and to empower their news anchors to speak up when offensive terms are mentioned without proper context.
AAJA MediaWatch Committee