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Pet Sins November 2004

Racial combinations of New York Metropolitan news anchors

In the New York Metropolitan area, the 10 O'clock News shows usually have two weeknight anchors:

  • Channel 5 - Rosanna Scotto/John Roland (white ethnic/white)
  • Channel 9 - Brenda Blackmon/Ernie Anastos (black/white ethnic)
  • Channel 11 - Kaity Tong/Jim Watkins (Asian/white)

Q: How will we know when the New York metropolitan area has gotten over a lot of things - racism, sexism, etc?
A: When neither regular weeknight anchor on the 10 o'clock news need be white or a man.

One day I saw a black man hosting a news-type show on TV, and I was surprised when the show's focus was not what someone might call "black issues". This brought home to me that racism can simply be a stereotyped expectation of difference and a belief in unbridgeable distance - "Oh, this must be a black thing - I don't need to watch..." I had previously imagined that I was no kind of racist, but I learned then that I was infected by racism, too.