You would think that by now people, especially those in the media, would understand that off-the-cuff comments about other races, nationalities, regions, etc. can easily be taken as offensive. That is the very hard lesson that one meteorologist had to learn yesterday when she attempted to report of the impending Hurricane Matthew, but somehow managed to insult Haitians instead.
Jennifer Delgado, a meteorologist with The Weather Channel, was giving an in-depth report of the impact of Hurricane Matthew on Haiti and decided to throw in her assumptions of the dietary restrictions of Haitian children. Delgado incorrectly and insensitively stated that “Even the kids there, they’re so hungry they actually eat the trees,” as a commentary on the economic conditions in the country.
Naturally many were outraged, both Haitian and non-Haitian, that someone could say something so ridiculous and inflammatory on national TV without any proof or actual knowledge of what Haitians actually do. As a result, a Change.org petition has been started by Jonathan Francois to have Jennifer Delgado fired.
An excerpt of the petition is below:
“…NO, HAITIANS DO NOT EAT TREES. Get your facts right before you offend 15 millions Haitians.
Haitians around the world are extremely upset and offended by Ms Jennifer Delgado stupid remarks and want her separation from the Weather Channel. She had not proven her professionalism, competence and knowledge about Haiti during her weathercast. As a result, she is in violation of ethical standards of journalism and her employer established rules and policies for employees.
As a result, she has to let go. Instead of boycotting the Weather Channel where the company could lose millions of dollars in sponsorship and advertisement, we just want her to get terminated for her insulting remarks.
At press time, the Change.org petition had 13,000 signatures. In all likelihood Delgado won’t be fired, but will probably issue a formal apology instead, which is so often the case with incidents like this. Hopefully if she is allowed to keep her job, she will think before she speaks in the future.
You can check out the original offensive video BELOW: