Archives for November 18, 2017

PAC-MI President responds to Detroit News bias reporting

It is obvious that Monday’s Detroit News online article reporting on the Independence March in Poland, which took place on 11-11-17 reflected, in orientation and emphasis, political preferences and not reality on the ground.  The Independence March’s main theme “We want God”, proclaimed by the first huge banner at the head of the march, was difficult to miss.  A huge crowd of 60,000 people gathered to manifest their patriotism, love of the country, and growing pride in being Polish.  There were some banners out of place and there was a swift reaction of governmental officials, predictably unreported by the media.  Three hours later Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Culture of Poland, Professor Piotr Glinski, and on Monday, President of Poland Andrzej Duda, as well as the Chairman of the ruling party PIS, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, stated clearly that several out of context signs noted by the leftist media are considered by the authorities as a provocation against Poland.

 

We are still waiting patiently for the day when reporting about events in Poland becomes accurate and balanced and free of self-serving political prejudices.

 

Ann Bankowski,

President

Polish American Congress

Michigan Division

Polish American organizations react to racist remarks on Saturday Night Live

Polish American organizations joined in on the protests demanding apology from the producers of the popular comedy show Saturday Night Live, which in the episode aired on November 4, included a racist remarks about Polish Americans, as well as allowed its host for this SNL episode, comedian Larry David, to make distasteful jokes about picking up women at Nazi concentration camps.

Dr. Thaddeus Radzilowski, the President of the Piast Institute issued a demand to NBC and Saturday Night Live to retract the insulting, racist remarks and to offer an apology to the Polish American community for it.

SNL’s skit mocking Sarah Huckabee Sanders contained gratuitous remarks about someone being as a “Polack as dumb a box of rocks.”

“This ugly insult, uttered without context, was obviously a search for cheap laughs when creativity fails,” writes Dr. Radzilowski.  “It sought to pander to one of America’s remaining respectable bigotries.  It goes without saying that a similar remark about women, African Americans, Hispanics, gays or other group would have raised howls of public outrage.  That it did not raise outrage, shows how far we as a society that purports to acute sensitivity about bigotry and racism, still have to go.

“It is customary in such replies to recount the role of Polish Americans in building America, serving with honors in its wars and contributing to the commonwealth. That record speaks for itself and we do not have to justify our right to be equal citizens of the United States.  The issue is larger: every person, every group in our nation-indeed in our world-deserves to be treated with dignity and not held up to public mockery, insult and debasement.

“The Polish community deserves to receive a public apology from NBC and SNL for this utterly ignorant characterization.  The American public needs to recognize that racist remarks such as these are an affront to our national ideals and a rupture of public civility no matter about whom they are made.

The National President of the Polish American Congress, Frank Spula, in his letter to Chief Executive Officer of NBC Studio, writes that “since the airing, our office has been inundated with countless calls and e-mails expressing outrage and concern over this remark.

“Ethnic and racial jokes are necessarily scathing and do great damage, both by perpetuating ugly stereotypes and by demeaning a large number of citizens on the basis of their background and other innate characteristics.  These types of remarks are offensive for all communities, not just ours.

“I am hopeful that the writers, executives or hosts who permitted such defamatory, anti-Polish comments to be aired did not do so with malice, as a finding of deliberate ethnic slander over public airwaves could result in a Federal Communications Commission investigation and fine.

“I, as well, as the Polish American Congress, expect that NBC will issue a written public apology for this insulting incident which can be reprinted in the various Polish American media, as well as a commitment to educate and council writers and production staff about preventing racial and cultural stereotypes that mock an entire community representing a large portion of the American populations.”

Ann Bankowski, the President of the Polish American Congress Michigan Division, in a letter to the Saturday Night Live producer, Lorne Michael and to the NBC Programming Managements writes:

“It is with great distress I write this letter on behalf of the members of the Polish American Congress- Michigan, first in response to the extremely distasteful and insensitive opening monologue of Mr. Larry David, on the topic of picking up women in concentration camps.

“Too many of our members, as well as countrymen in Poland, and those who now reside here, experienced and survived, or tragically lost, family and friends under the brutal regime and constant terror of Hitler’s occupation of Poland throughout the years of WWII. Poland lost 20% of its population during that dreadful time and many Polish citizens, Jewish and Gentile, died and suffered in concentration camps. No laughing matter, even for comic relief, to be treated so inappropriately and insensitively. Shame on Mr. David and big disappointment in SNL.

“But that’s not all. We were later subjected to the parody of Ms. Sara Huckabee Sanders in a vulgar and excessively demeaning spoof, in which, to top it all off, she dismisses someone to be a ‘a Polack, who is dumb as a box of rocks.’  We thought such demeaning stereotypes were long gone, but somehow, for lack of better wit and talent, I suppose, such cheap shots are thrown in. Very disappointing and inexcusable!

“We sincerely appeal to your better judgement in regards to such programming and look forward to viewing true comedic genius once again from SNL.”