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Outrage grows after conservative host’s remarks on reporter’s Asian features

"When I look back, what’s most shocking to me is the casualness of the racism, this kind of unbridled hatred and the mockery," KPIX-TV reporter Betty Yu said.

A conservative podcast host is facing backlash after making racist comments about Betty Yu, an Asian American news reporter in San Francisco.

During a segment of his podcast —  "Louder with Crowder" — on Wednesday, Steven Crowder said, “Oh, that is an aggressively Asian face” when describing Yu, a reporter for KPIX-TV, a local CBS affiliate.

He was reacting to news coverage by Yu about disputes over In-N-Out Burger’s failure to adhere to the city's vaccine requirements. 

KPIX reporter Betty Yu.
KPIX reporter Betty Yu.KPIX

He made multiple remarks about Yu’s features with comments like, “that just means if you were a skier, it would be like a black diamond. You’d have to drop in on a chopper.” 

Crowder ended the segment by saying, “By the way, the reason I say that is because usually with the reporters, they’re, like, they’re kind of like Americanized Asians. So I think it’s a good thing. It's a good thing, it's full Asian.”

Guest host Dave Landau said, “I wish she would have kept her fan.”

The clip went viral on Twitter on Thursday night and news reporters, online users and networks quickly condemned Crowder’s comments. 

Neither Yu nor Crowder responded to NBC News’ requests for comment.

Yu sat down with KPIX 5 and said, “When I look back, what’s most shocking to me is the casualness of the racism, this kind of unbridled hatred and the mockery”. 

Crowder has made offensive comments in the past about women, the LGBTQ community and other marginalized groups. He received a strike on his YouTube channel last week and was suspended for one week due to hate speech after making transphobic remarks in a video. A channel receives strikes if it violates YouTube’s community guidelines and three strikes will permanently remove it from the platform. YouTube declined to comment. 

CBS Television Stations President Jennifer Mitchell and KPIX-TV San Francisco President and GM Kevin Walsh released a statement supporting Yu.

“CBS Television Stations and KPIX 5 fully support our colleague Betty Yu and condemn the horrific, racist comments directed at Betty as well as the other demeaning Asian stereotypes spread during Steven Crowder’s program on Wednesday. We stand in solidarity with Betty, an accomplished journalist and valued member of our CBS family. These hateful and offensive remarks are outrageous and destructive and reaffirm the importance of our work as journalists to shine a light on anti-Asian violence and hate speech when it occurs.”

Yu’s colleagues at CBS and journalists from other networks called on YouTube to take action against Crowder.