Mexican comic blasted for joke about fire victimsJanuary 18th, 2012 - 11:26 am ICT by IANS
Mexico City, Jan 18 (IANS/EFE) Mexicans went to Twitter and other social networks with demands that a comic lose his job as a television clown after he joked about the 49 children killed in a June 2009 fire at a daycare in the northern state of Sonora.
The site once occupied by the daycare center is now home to “a little shop called Kentucky Fried Children”, Sergio Verduzco, a.k.a. “Platanito”, said.
The backlash materialized within hours and critics quickly set up a Web page with the title “PlatanitoShowOffTheAir”.
“He degrades the profession of clown. It’s a painful thing, as a father, it made me cry,” Julio Cesar Marquez, spokesman for a group representing parents of the daycare fire victims, told the media.
Marquez urged people to boycott Verduzco’s public appearances and said his organization planned to ask Televisa - Mexico’s dominant television network - to take disciplinary action against the comic.
“There must be respect for these 49 children,” insisted the director of Mexico’s Conapred anti-discrimination agency, Ricardo Bucio.
Amid the mounting criticism, Verduzco offered an apology.
“A clown is to make people laugh, but not to harm,” he said late Monday, asking for forgiveness from people who were hurt by his remarks, “especially families, the parents, the teenagers and the children who follow ‘Platanito’.”
“I cannot repair the damage and the only thing I can do is speak from my heart and pray that you accept this apology,” Verduzco said in a statement, promising to become a “better clown” by learning from his mistake.
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Tags: anti discrimination agency, apology, asking for forgiveness, backlash, bucio, clown, daycare center, disciplinary action, discrimination, efe, fire victims, julio cesar, kentucky fried, mexicans, mexico city, public appearances, social networks, spokesman, televisa mexico, television network