Critic's page of WZBH The Beach, 93.5 FM on Delmarva. What was an effort to document the sexist, racist, Islamaphobic, and homophobic programming pervasive in WZBH's programming has now become a review site of the station as they work - slowly - towards a more diverse staff and programming style.
Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Sniffing - or licking - out the foreigners
Here’s an interesting tidbit of history.Shortly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, the Army was desperate in figuring out how to defeat the Japanese in the Pacific while fighting Hitler in Europe.The Japanese had taken over most of the islands in the Pacific and getting them out would be no easy task, especially while fighting another major front in Europe.
Along comes this civilian scientist named William Pestre, who convinces the Army’s top brass that he could train dogs to hunt down the Japanese and kill them purely on the scent of Japanese blood.No trainer would have to be present to direct them and the dogs wouldn’t attack non-Japanese because they don’t have the same scent. His plan was to release tens of thousands of trained dogs on the Pacific islands that would kill the Japanese without an American soldier ever having to set foot on the islands.
Back in those days, it was an easy sell.The predominately White decision makers back then all held the standard prejudices and bigotry towards the non-White races.It was common knowledge that the color of one’s skin wasn’t the only factor that differentiated the races.The way they smelled, the foods they ate, their intelligence levels, and their behaviors all made them inferior to the good White Christian race.Trying to sell the idea to the military brass that Japanese had their own unique smell from anyone else was like trying to sell an ice cream cone to kids on a hot summer day.
The secret program ran for three months on, ironically, Cat Island off the coast of Gulfport, MS.Mr. Pestre tried his best to train the dogs to sniff out and kill the Japanese.They even brought in American-Japanese soldiers to use as dog bait to train the dogs.
After ninety days, the Army evaluated the training program and deemed it a complete failure.Mr. Pestre became infuriated and threatened not only the top military brass with retribution if they closed his program down, but also the President.
The military didn’t take kindly to the threats and shut the program down. Mr. Pestre disappeared from the scientific community.The Army Signal Corps took over the training program of the dogs and produced a fine force of working dogs to act as sentries, scouts, trackers, and mine sniffing dogs.Even as late as the Vietnam War, the war dogs were recognized for their heroic service and credited with saving around ten thousand soldiers’ lives during the conflict.
From the Army’s training program, we learned that contrary to our bigoted beliefs most of us held at the time, people smell like people to a dog and there is no defining smell unique to any one race.In fact, today, we can look back at this sad chapter in American history and laugh at the stupidity of supposedly educated men of the time.We can recognize that the dog training program was born out bigotry and ignorance.
Let’s fast forward to a week ago, last Monday.Matt and Crank aired the soundtrack of a 1950’s PSA they allegedly found on the Internet.We do know, however, it is one of Matt and Crank’s feeble attempts at humor as they push their agenda of bigotry and White Christian heterosexual male superiority.
Matt and Crank try to tell us how to recognize foreigners from “normal people.”They delight us with facts like Black people have Black skin and wear large clothing.Asian people have yellow skin and are often seen jumping, high kicking, and other sorts of foreign sorcery.
Foreigners like Canadians, however, look too much like us to be easily distinguished as a foreigner, so they teach us a test we can conduct to determine if someone is a foreigner or a normal person.Lick their cheek because foreigners have a salty, musky taste and secrete a sticky mucous.If you lick a foreigner, be sure to spit the mucous back into the foreigner’s face because the mucous is poisonous.
No matter how we at the Critics Page try to look at this segment, we see blatant bigotry bordering on racism being passed off as entertainment.Matt and Crank’s underlying message is clear – if you are not White or speak a different language, you are here to undermine common codes of morals and ethics, that is, destroy the American (read White) society.
If this sort of entertainment were a one time slip by Matt and Crank, we could write it off as simply a bad attempt to entertain us.However, we know this sort of commentary from Matt and Crank is a staple of their program.We only listened to their program twice last week, about an hour each time.On Monday, we’re treated to the subversive tactics of foreigners and told to spit in their face.On Friday, we’re treated to the evils of the lesbian feminists and their subversive tactics to get women out of the house and working instead of cooking, cleaning, and raising the kids.
Maybe Matt and Crank share ancestry with Mr. Pestre and have solved the problem that caused his WWII training program to fail.Instead of sniffing out the foreigners, the dogs should be trained to lick out the foreigners.