Tuesday, 18 November 2014

"Smakloos humor"

The last days Netherlands is "shocked" by the racist comments that immediately appeared under the selfie that some members of the national football team posted, by coincidence (?) all the members in the picture were what the Dutch call "allochtonen" (a person whose at least one parent or grandparent was not born in the Netherlands) or let's just put it gently, darker than the average Dutchman. Every official organization in this land reacted and called the comments "smaakloos en beledigend".
Not that the reaction was wrong, but I just want to point out how hyprocritical the Dutch society is. The Dutch (even the non-racists) don't really understand discrimination. They see it with the simplistic definition "you can't say anything bad about a person with dark skin".  So when "dark skin" is not included, the Dutch brain is impossible to recognize discrimination.

I say that because as a Greek I've heard and read tons of insults during the last 4 years by some Dutch, but not a single tear was shed for me, not a single word was written. When I heard these two words, "smaakloos en beledigend" in the NOS journal last night my mind immediately went 2.5 years back.

Back then, Sander van de Pavert, the producer of parody series LuckyTV, created an insulting video for the Greek prime minister George Papandreou:

And this wasn't the first insulting production on Dutch national TV:

The Greek ambassador wrote an open letter back then and called the Papandreou video "smaakloos en beledigend" and that it has no place on public television. The Dutch laughed on this letter and claimed the sense of humour, the right on satire and that limits have no sense in humour.

Actually there are limits in humour. And the Dutch don't get that. Insulting/Making fun of somebody is not humour. It's just being mean. It's amazing how they can see it when the person that is being insulted has dark skin or has the Dutch nationality, but they totally miss it when the person they insult is outside the borders of this country.

Well, I was not shocked when I saw the comments under the selfie. It didn't come as a surprise to me. Because this kind of comments are everywhere on internet on Dutch (national) TV or everyday on the street and the Dutch ignore them. They don't do anything about it, "het komt altijd van zelf weer goed. Dus niemand hoeft zich zorgen te maken" as Sinterklaas said on Saturday and was proudly quoted by the NOS journalist(!) at the end of the journal: 

("Things always fix themselves by their own. Nobody has to worry". Dutch traditional cosmotheory originating from Calvinism, which considers that the human fate is predetermined by God and people cannot do anything to change it, but pray for God's mercy).

Nee, jongens, het komt niet van zelf goed. You have to speak up. Otherwise you keep raising generations of more and more racists.

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