Is it so difficult to laugh at ourselves? So Doordarshan, the official Indian TV station, sacked an anchor for addressing the Chinese President Xi Jinping as Eleven Jinping. No one told her how to pronounce Xi. Point is, she should have been briefed. By that token, most of us reading this have no clue how to pronounce it either.
Okay, saying Eleven is a bit stupid. Conceded. But what if the script handed to her was written as XI and you are reading it and it just goes through as XI because it is there on the page and even as it is uttered you realize you have goofed up. You think of a cricket XI or Edward VIII or Richard III and it flows through.
It is not as if the Chinese are going to launch an attack on the borders? Get over it. Beijing does not even care. The DD boss should have had a bit of a laugh and as, my colleague Padma Rao says, done a 20 minute show on TV bloopers.
The French have in one broadcast called him Chingpin, Chillping, Chipin and they didn’t sack the guy. You don’t believe go to Youtube and see it for yourself.
Why are we so solemn? And why is sacking always the answer. Everyone finds a scapegoat and that’s it, job done. Indians love to sack people, it is like that is the best solution.
It happened with me once. The whole hierarchy screwed up royally while I was out of town and then to please the bosses decided okay let’s get rid of the top guy and save our little skins and spray piety. And they did. To my mind it is such a gutless thing to do. Sack the damn TV Director or the MD or the CEO or the GM or whatever, he or she are people who set the pace.
You go by mispronunciation you might as well sack 99% of the newscasters. There is no end to the way they speak, wery, wery velcome.
So many VIPs have messed up, not just anchors.
Unless these people are professionally coached and salaries upped and a certain style introduced blame the system don’t gang up on this poor girl, she was just a symptom of a deeper sloth and unprofessionalism.
I would say, reinstate her today.