CBS2 investigative reporter David Goldstein broke a story about The City of Los Angeles Department of Public Works producing a controversial video depicting Asians with taxpayer money.
The video, shot at the Japanese Garden at the Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in Van Nuys, showed a non-Asian man dressed as a geisha girl who talked with a mock Japanese accent.
“The Japanese water park is a beautiful, beautiful site, with blooming, blooming lotus and water lilies,” the actor said.
The short was apparently meant to teach viewers about recycled water, which is what they use at the Japanese Garden.
Although the video has been taken down, bits of it can be see in the CBS2 video report.
A spokeswoman for the city’s Department of Public Works, Cora Jackson-Fossett, said “We apologize profusely that we missed the mark totally. We made a mistake. We’re extremely sorry. It was an attempt at humor that failed.”
City officials said all future videos will be extensively reviewed, but my question is why someone would think this is OK in the first place. If I’m not mistaken, Channel 35’s offices are in a mall at Little Tokyo. I’ll admit that taxpayer dollars to educate about recycled water wouldn’t be a surprise, but to have to add cost by adding a layer of review/approval to public service videos doesn’t seem like it’s the solution to the problem.
What do you think?