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Schatz says Fox reporter not welcome in Honolulu’s Chinatown after ‘racist’ story

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS In this Oct. 28, 2013 file photo, political commentator Bill O'Reilly attends the National Geographic Channel's "Killing Kennedy" world premiere screening reception at The Newseum, in Washington.
  • DENNIS ODA / SEPT. 1 U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz speaks at the opening ceremonies for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress at the Neil Blaisdell Center last month.

Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz has no aloha for Fox News correspondent Jesse Watters, whose report in New York’s Chinatown generated a backlash on social media for its use of Asian stereotypes.

“I cannot believe that this guy is allowed to stay on the air. Or that anyone finds this garbage funny,” Schatz wrote in a tweet today.

“Jesse Watters is unfunny and mean. He should be ashamed of himself. Also, he’s not welcome to Honolulu Chinatown,” the Democratic senator from Hawaii wrote in another tweet.

The Fox reporter’s “Watters World” segment on “The O’Reilly Factor” Monday night showed him asking people in New York’s Chinatown about the presidential election.

Fox describes Watters’ reports as a “comedic look at the latest headlines.”

But the Asian American Journalists Association issued a statement saying the piece was “rife with racial stereotypes, drew on thoughtless tropes and openly ridiculed Asian Americans.”

The group asked Fox News to apologize for the story.

Watters tweeted his regret about the backlash.

“My man-on-the-street interviews are meant to be taken as tongue-in-cheek and I regret if anyone found offense,” he wrote in a tweet today. In another tweet, Watters said: “As a political humorist, the Chinatown segment was intended to be a light piece, as all Watters World segments are.”

The story starts out with Watters asking two women, “Am I supposed to bow to say hello?”

He interviews a number of people on Trump’s comments on China and also asks a man if he knows karate and then goes on to show video of tae kwon do, while interspersing scenes from kung fu movies.

In an on-air conversation after the piece, Watters told host O’Reilly that, “they are such a polite people,” while O’Reilly notes that “they are patient.”

“It’s gentle fun,” O’Reilly continues. “I know we are going to get letters.”

Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites filled up with comments about the story. Watters’ defenders urged him not to give in to political correctness, while his detractors said offering regret is not the same as apologizing.

“It’s called humor-Don’t getur panties in a twist jus cause u have no funnybone/cantexist outside of a safe zone,” wrote @KrisWilliams.

While @briflys asked, “Would @jessebwatters do something like what he did in NY Chinatown in Harlem with the African American community?”


Editor’s note: Craig Gima, who wrote this story, is a member of the Asian American Journalists Association.

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    • Agree with Schatz. There is no room for racism. The carefully edited clips make the Chinese interviewed look uneducated. They are far from that. Fox is a vicious network and loves to manipulate and lie to serve the rich that own and control the network.

        • Pantee. White knight for all Asians? Not even. The appropriate response is not to act like a weak crybaby demanding an apology, but Tweet to Watters, ‘Eh Watters F U”. Yes, Watters piece on Asians was full of racial stereotypes, but it was actually funny. Watters makes equally fun of liberal Caucasians. Asians should appreciate that Watters and O’Reilly, even think about the Asian vote. People need to stop acting like helpless victims and better for Asians to one day turn the tables and make fun of Watters. In the piece Watters was play sparing with this Asian martial arts guy who was much shorter with less reach but the Asian guy actually moved in and hit him on the head hard enough that Watters cringed up and went ‘No mas’!

        • I’m waiting for Watters’ red-state segment on mouth-breathing rednecks and illiterate white trash. That should be good fun. Maybe he could include some hicks from Oklahoma and ask them what it’s like to date a sheep or their cousin. I’ll bet the Fox viewers would love that!

      • but allie the fox news owner who bought out fox last year, turned his company over to his two sons that are Hillary backer’s, you finally admit that backer’s of Hillary are a vicious network.

      • Do you mean the same way that TV commercials make Whites look like dopey, weak, pathetic, clueless nerds, and Blacks the smart, well dressed ones out of central casting? That’s all I see on Fox and the other networks. Is that racist? Or is racism only in one direction?

    • I thought Schatz was dead hadn’t heard a peep out of him lately. He needs to position himself to brown nose Hillary, since Obama has left him out to dry.

  • Let him come here to Chinatown and he can be greeted with a special “kill H…. day” and see how funny he finds that. “It’s gentle fun… going to get a lot of letters on this”. “It’s called humor… don’t get your stained bvds all twisted because you have no funny bone”.

  • I don’t find it offensive . . . and I also don’t find it amusing or entertaining either. That “reporter” has no talent or brains. If you want to see an offensive but funny segment, watch Triumph visit Chinatown for the Year of the Dog.

  • “It’s called humor-Don’t getur panties in a twist jus cause u have no funnybone/cantexist outside of a safe zone”

    it’s not Watters that edits that segment, it’s someone else.
    Watters just asks the questions.

    maybe Schatzy needs a vacation.

  • People killing each other in the Middle East, Europe and here in the US. Why don’t Schatz work on that instead? Maybe because he has to do some real work to solve real problems that he was elected to do.

    • He spent 30 seconds making a statement. It’s like demanding why you would spend 20 seconds typing a blog message instead of doing whatever it is you do for a living or doing something for your community.

      • Then he should make some announcements on what he’s currently working on. You honestly think he spent only 20 seconds on this subject? So naive.

        • He needs to make statements about his other projects just to assure you that he’s not spending all of his time on this particular issue — which, by the way is relevant to a large portion of his constituency. Are you just mad because he’s speaking up for someone other than you?

  • It’s called comedy people. Don’t watch Tosh.O that’s for sure. If you only want to see political correctness don’t watch Saturday night live either.

  • Get a Grip Schatz! this is Hawaii and it’s common ribbing each others ethnicity. You must have lived a sheltered life not knowing that. So Mr. Schatz what you got to say about Mr. Sancho Lee? Have you condemned the writer/singer? Will you ban it off Hawaii’s airwaves?

    • Being BORN and RAISED on the mainland, Brian isn’t familiar with our local customs. Yet another reason why I find it odd he thinks he should be OUR senator.

      • In response to Yotare’s comment, Brian Schatz was born in Michigan but spent most of his childhood in Hawaii, and he was a Punahou graduate! But because he’s not Polynesian or Asian, people assume he grew up somewhere else

        • Well, it’s hard for anyone to remember where Schatz lives – even Schatz himself forgot. Isn’t that why he held office in one political district while he applied for a lower-interest “owner-occupant” mortgage in a different district? It wasn’t to commit mortgage fraud, was it? If not, then I guess even Schatz doesn’t quite know where he lives.

      • I’m Asian and didn’t find Watters’ humorous segment to be racist. It’s done all the time in Hawaii, with tongue in cheek, of stereotyping all of our different groups. Of course on the mainland, you have to find the humor talking within the ethnic folks you’re addressing, in this case the Chinese in Chinatown. Now Watters would have been racist if he were to make fun asking the same questions in a non-Chinese mainland group. Schatz is either grandstanding or is extra sensitive because he was raised as a Jew in the mainland.

        • In response to butinski’s comment, Schatz was 2 years old when he was moved to Hawaii, so he wasn’t really raised in the “mainland”

    • I don’t know; a Chinese friend of mine forwarded me this story. She was very upset about the sketch. Reminded her of her hateful co-workers (when she was on the mainland).

      • why not also ban all Hawaii’s comedians from doing their gigs in Hawaii too while your at it! They’re dishing all the racist remarks daily in Hawaii!

  • A senator from Hawaii should not get bent out of shape over this kind of humor. What’s next, condemning Frank DeLima and Andy Bumatai? If Schatz were truly local he wouldn’t be so quick to jump on the PC bandwagon. Too much time in Washington, relax braddah!

  • Schatz isn’t welcome in Chinatown, he doesn’t know the difference between humor and reality, and he is a joke and a bad one at that. Water’s World is a light and entertaining segment, lightens up the O’Reily Factor so it doesn’t get bogged down and it works. Schatz just stay out of Chinatown, please……

  • So…………where are all the Shatz outrage tweets when Saturday Night Live does the same thing? Hmm, I guess it’s ok because SNL is a liberal outlet???

    • Does anyone really believe Shatz saw this while watching Fox???? Not a chance. The PC Police sent this to him and instructed him to push his outrage to the press.

  • Watters does a masterful job going around the country showing in an amusing way just how stupid, ignorant and uninformed Americans are about just about anything asked of them. I have watched numerous segments in which people who were college-educated and even school teachers who could not answer simple questions like the number of branches in our government, names of the Vice President and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and the like. During the campaign between Clinton and Sanders, it was shocking to watch college students, our future leaders of America, who did not even know who was running for President. Some even said it was a good idea when Watters asked what they thought about Bernie Sanders selecting Karl Marx as his VP running mate. It is fair to say that many of his segments have focused on liberals who came off looking very stupid. I think that is why Schatz is so anti-Watters’ World. The segment in New York’s Chinatown was not like that. It actually showed Asians in a positive light compared to people in most other Watters’ segments. Schatz and others who find the segment racists or offensive for any reason need to lighten up. By the way, where was the outrage from Schatz when most Watters’ segments made Caucasians look stupid?

  • Oh, yeah, tongue-in-cheek, try that kind of humor in Cabrini Green or Harlem or Watts, you know what you’d get. But it’s easy when it’s foreign immigrants who don’t understand what your saying, huh. Next time you come to Hawaii, i’ll introduce you to some bruddahs in Waimanalo and you can do your tongue-in-cheek.

    • Sheesh. You’re not a true local and are grandstanding acting like one.. With all the humorous stereotyped jokes about Polynesians in Hawaii by our local comedians, why haven’t you said anything? Maybe there is some truth about stereotyping your “bruddahs”. That terminology gave you away.

  • I’m sorry, Senator. I didn’t realize you had been appointed Emperor of Hawaii and can dictate who is or isn’t welcome in our state. Obviously inspired by King Barry The Great?

    I find it quite amusing that some liberal kook like Schatz, who was NOT EVEN BORN OR RAISED IN HAWAII, has styled himself the gatekeeper of what is and isn’t allowed here. You want the Fox reporter to go back to NYC? Perhaps YOU should go back to Michigan, Senator?

    I can’t wait till Colleen runs against you.

    • I find it amusing that someone bashing people “getting bent out of shape” over unqualified cultural stereotypes is getting so “bent out of shape” over what he considers to be Schatz’s unqualified cultural statements.

  • Righten up Blyan Shots. Rai yu no mo sense of humor? Flee speech is plotected by the U.S. Constitution. Rearn to raugh at yourself, yu will rive ronger.

  • Regarding, “I cannot believe that this guy is allowed to stay on the air,” if someone being offended by what’s heard on TV is the criterion, then I’m offended by plenty of what I see and hear on TV. But, I’ve never thought of saying, “I cannot believe those people are allowed to stay on the air.” So is it freedom of speech for me, but not for thee?

  • He’s just trying to stir up some drama for the drama queen vote. 70% over here voted for Sanders in the Primary but this jerk cast his super delegate votes for Hillary.

  • Ok, so I just watched the segment on youtube. My findings: Brian is having a “Schatz fit” over nothing. What an overly sensitive, politically correct buffoon. So Brian, are you going to ban, oh wait PC must be employed, un-invite 95% of our local comedic performers from Chinatown now too. Seems to me as though your building your own wall right in downtown buddy. Get over it and clean up that mangina mess you got going on.

      • Hey they both grad Punahou – LOL! as PabloWesgesend so sternly points out in previous comments. Eh, Pablo please share why graduating Punahou is so important to being local? Inquiring “local” public school minds like know!

        • Hey MakaniKai, I was just responding to someone who claimed Brian Schatz didn’t grow up in Hawaii when he did! If being from Punahou makes Schatz “non-local”, then would the say the same thing about Manti Teo, Duane Akina or Mosi Tatupu? MakaniKai asked me “public school minds like know”, but MakaniKai doesn’t know that I’m from McKinley High School!

  • so, no to frank d. no to rap r. no to andy b. no to the beamers for their sancho lee. and no to na leo for their local boys.

    perhaps duke’s “safe place” where males can go to meditate on their “toxic masculinity” is next for honolulu.

    just because you claim offense doesn’t make you right.

    if you complain of racism and demand an apology from a comedian like watters you have to complain of racism and ask for apologies from frank, rap, andy, the beamers and na leo or risk being racist yourself.

  • Really Senator? Just not welcome in Chinatown? Why not go full on and ban him from the nei. Relax – unlike you Brian I get “pake” ancestry and found the segment a bit stereo typed but you must never have watched Watters World-all are fair game. Aloha.

  • As an Asian American I took it as simply a “tongue-in-cheek” news piece. As mentioned by another, there was also a piece on Italian American’s and I felt the same way. On the other hand, it is rather offensive that Senator Schatz is insulting my intelligence by uusing this to pander for votes…”wassa matta you take me fo’ damn fool”? 🙂

  • Senator Schatz overstepped his authority, he has no right to say such things to an american citizen no matter how outraged he thinks he is.
    Show me a comedian that doesn’t use racial stereotypes or jokes in their act. Poor judgement on Schatz part, if he wants to play senator he better grow up before his peeps replace him with Hanabutta.

    • How can he overstep his authority when he has none? Even the Caucasian woman from the Big Island got zero respect for Schatz and Hirono when she stuck her middle finger right behind Schatz and Mazie as they smiled like buffoons to the nation and the world. Try that shatz when Inouye was alive and that woman would have been pulled from the camera shot before she got the chance and when she returned to Hawaii would have suffered the same fate as Ed Case.

  • After reading every post, I wonder, s this important? Isn’t the homeless problem more important, or drug use, or maybe Islamic terrorists executing people, or maybe hoe the rail project will be dismantled(or paid for. There seems to be a lot more important things going on.

  • Oh no, little Brian Schatz got spanked on the board. I’m sure he’ll get re-elected next go around though. There are an awful lot of low information democrats in the state.

  • Schatz is a real joke. Nothing but a cheap shot to drum up voter enthusiasm by pandering to his Liberal constituency. What a loser this moron is.

  • Please don’t reunite Hirono, Schatz, and Hanabusa. We don’t want to go back to 3 blind mice in Congress. Maybe Hanabusa can get into another argument with a news personality too.

  • Okay, I went and saw that video on You Tube. It’s pretty stupid and not very funny. Jay Leno did a much better man-one-the-streets type of segment.

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