Friday, February 04, 2011

Top Gear's Mexico fun

So the BBC has just apologised for the Top Gear row (see below).

Wouldn't a much smarter reaction have been for the Ambassodor to privately note his outrage to the BBC, threaten a row, and demand as his price for not doing so that Top Gear devote an episode (or at least some features) to doing really cool stuff with cars with some very cool Mexicans (who show they know how to take a joke) in a beautifully-shot & touristically-appealing Mexico? At once Mexico gets good publicity and becomes Top Gear's favourite country.

But hell, I'm not in marketing.


Mexico complains about 'vulgar' Top Gear
02 Feb 2011

Ambassador Eduardo Medina Mora Icaza complained in a letter to the BBC that Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May used what he described as bigoted stereotypes against Mexicans in a Sunday broadcast.

In the episode, which was viewed by more than 6 million people, Hammond claimed that cars imitate national characteristics. "Mexican cars are just going to be a lazy, feckless, flatulent, oaf with a moustache leaning against a fence asleep looking at a cactus with a blanket with a hole in the middle on as a coat," he said.

Clarkson went on to joke that being Mexican would be "brilliant" because then he could sleep all day. He said he was confident he would not receive any complaints about their comments because the Mexican ambassador would be asleep.

However, the ambassador did complain and wrote: "It is utterly incomprehensible and unacceptable that the premiere broadcaster should allow three of its presenters to display their bigotry and ignorance by mocking the people and culture of our country with such vehemence," the ambassador wrote.

The letter said the trio's "outrageous, vulgar" insults reinforce negative stereotypes and inflame racism against Mexicans.

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