Bob Beckel of Fox News has issued an apology for his use of a racial slur last week, but some of his critics found it less than sincere.
During the July 10 episode of “The Five,” Beckel called the Chinese “the single biggest threat to the national security of the U.S.” and said, “As usual, we bring them over here and we teach a bunch of Chinamen — er, Chinese people — how to do computers, and then they go back to China and hack into us.”
On Monday, Beckel said, “I made some comments last week about Chinese people which apparently upset some people, for which I apologize. However, I do not apologize for things I’ve said about China and won’t go into the litany of it now, because there’s too many China apologists in this country.”
He added, “I will continue to warn the American people about how dangerous China is to the U.S. security and to our business community, but to those who are offended, I apologize. But I will not apologize to the Chinese government, or for their habits, or for their murders.”
Beckel previously used the slur in 2011 when he defended his use of the word “redneck” in a previous show: “Blacks are rednecks, whites are rednecks, I was a redneck, Chinamen are rednecks.”
Last year, Beckel said during a broadcast, “I went swimming. My eyes blew up, and it made me look Oriental.”
Asian American elected officials, including Rep. Judy Chu (D-Pasadena), chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, Rep. Mike Honda (D-San Jose), chair emeritus of CAPAC, State Sen. Ted Lieu (D-Redondo Beach) and Assemblymember Paul Fong (D-San Jose), chair of the Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus, have called on Beckel to resign or for Fox to fire him.
Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) said Monday, “Racism has no place in our society. Unfortunately, last week’s incident on Fox News is just the latest slur uttered by Bob Beckel when referring to Chinese people. No apologies will do. We’ve already gotten empty apologies from Beckel in the past. He once laughed on the air mid-apology while saying that the term ‘Chinamen’ is not a racial slur. It’s time for Beckel to go. There should be no place for a serial racist on television.”
Ting noted that Sirius XM radio fired Anthony Cumia of “The Opie and Anthony Show” earlier this month for tweets the company called “racially charged and hate-filled.”
John Amato of Crooksandliars.com posted, “Sorry, Bob, but that’s not an apology at all. In fact, it’s another slap in the face of all the Asian people he offended.”
Randall Yip of AsAmNews posted, “Every good commentator knows you don’t mix messages. If you’re going to apologize and do it with sincerity, then apologize. If you’re going to rant about China, then rant about China. But don’t bury your apology in an editorial about the evils of China. It’s cowardly. It’s insincere.”