WTKK in Boston has indefinitely suspended conservative talk show host Jay Severin for blaming the swine flu on “some of the world’s lowest primitives” in Mexico. He also referred to Mexicans as unhygienic leeches from a primitive country.
According to Think Progress over the course of this week Severin has said, “So now in addition to venereal disease and the other leading exports of Mexico — women with mustaches and VD — now we have swine flu. … We should be if anything surprised that Mexico has not visited upon us poxes of more various and serious types considering the number of cimminalieans already here…”
He also called Mexicans unhygienic, and blamed them for the swine flu, “When scoop up some of the world’s lowest of primitives in poor Mexico and drop it down in the middle of the United States. Poor, without skills, without language, not share our culture, not share our hygiene. … It’s millions of leeches from a primitive country. … Now they are exporting a rather more active form of disease which is the swine flu.”
I don’t even know what to say about this blatant racism. The station was more than justified in suspending Severin. After 9/11, some Republicans thought that racism against people from the Middle East, and Muslims was acceptable, and now they are using the swine flu to unleash their racism against Mexicans that was barely below the surface to begin with.
In an article on the Boston Globe website, Severin is described as, “a bombastic voice whose views often mirror those of fringe conservatives.”
We first got a taste of this form of racism when George W. Bush tried to pass comprehensive immigration reform, but Severin’s comments take it to a whole new level.
Of course, he was just following the lead of conservative talkers like Michael Savage, who have spent the week railing against Mexicans for spreading the swine flu. I would argue the biggest threat to America isn’t a virus, like the flu, but exploitation of this crisis to fan the flames of racism.