“The (Mexican) ambassador is going to be siting there with the remote control going like this [snores and imitates sleeping]. They won’t complain. It’s fine”.Unfortunately for you, Mr. Clarkson, they did complain.
Mexican ambassador to Britain, Eduardo Medina Mora Icaza, demanded a public apology from the presenters of British motoring series “Top Gear” due to “xenophobic" and "offensive" comments made on their latest program. “In a country that boasts of its tolerance…it is totally incomprehensible and unacceptable that the premiere broadcaster should allow three of its presenters to display their bigotry and ignorance by mocking the people and culture of our country with such vehemence,” wrote Mora Icaza in a letter that was sent on Tuesday.
Clarkson and co-presenters James May and Richard Hammond have yet to publicly reply to Mora Icaza though it’s been reported “the BBC received the letter and plans to respond to the ambassador directly.”
The “Top Gear” presenters have not been immune to criticism over allegedly offensive comments on topics like environmentalism and truckers. They have previously raised the ire of Romanians and Germans, the latter occurring when Clarkson made mocking Nazi references while reviewing a BMW car.
Judge for yourself by watching the following video of the controversial remarks on Mexico and deciding if it was good-natured fun or in terrible taste:
It’ll be interesting to see if Hammond will defend his claims that Mexican cars reflects the country’s “characteristics” of being “lazy, feckless, flatulent, overweight, leaning against a fence asleep looking at a cactus with a blanket with a hole in the middle on as a coat." Perhaps the BBC will act much like in 2007 when the producers of an Australian reality show apologized for a “Mexican Night” challenge criticized as “offensive”.
Video Source - YouTube
Online Sources- Bloomberg, The Guardian, The Latin Americanist, MSNBC, The Scotsman, The Register, El Universal