Under the title “People of the Volkskrant talk about their dilemmas, fascinations and the drive to know more” Witteman goes on to explain how she, unlike a few of her colleagues, always finds something to write about.
Colleague columnists like Peter Buwalda and Marcel van Roosmalen often end up not knowing what do do halfway through the writing of their columns. “Yes, Peter is having a hard time. He lives in [the posh] Amsterdam-North, he calls it Reykjavik himself, and stays there all day long. Then he emails me that he has nothing to write about and then I always say: go to the fucking supermarket or something. Walk to somewhere where you can hear people talking. Because then you really have something. If you walk outside for fifteen minutes, you have three subjects.”
She then continues on how she distorts the truth when she uncovers a story about non-white Dutch people. If she experiences something that would make them look bad, she turns the non-whites into whites for the sake of her column.
She says the Volkskrant readers would rather read about bad whites instead. After all, Witteman claims she has to sell her writing and those columns mean money to her. So it is better to distort the truth for Volkskrant readers!
Witteman is not even ashamed to admit that she is writing fake news. “Certainly, I do a lot of self-censorship. I used to use the word ‘negro’, for example, but I have not written that for a few years because it has become a loaded word – and I do not want to hurt anyone.
“But it goes much further than that. When I see something on the street where someone who is black, Turkish or Moroccan is doing something rotten, I often change him to a white Dutch person. Because otherwise I am being called a racist.
“I once wrote about an annoying Moroccan woman on a scooter with a fat boy on the back with an iPad. I had to brake for a pigeon, so she also had to brake and then I landed in big shit. I wrote that down and a description of what she looked like: a woman with a headscarf and a fat boy. I got so much angry mail about it!”
Witteman says she would never write anything negative about non-whites. “About someone who is black, I would never again write that he is fat or ugly, because then I am a racist. I just write about white women with a figure like a dripping candle, that is possible. That self-censorship goes quite far, but yes, that’s the way it is.”
Sylvia Witteman has meanwhile responded to tweets by Joost Niemöller on her revelations about writing fake news.
She claims that she is allowed to lie because she is a columnist.
Strangely, the annual group photo of columnists at the Volkskrant for 2018, show no people of colour. They are missing altogether in a newspaper that preaches daily about anti-racism, diversity, inclusiveness and about the lack of Africans in the TV-series Friends.
Rarely have there been a whiter tableau de la troupe. Only the Green Left candidates are whiter, while even the party meetings of the PVV – the party of Geert Wilders – are more diverse. Yet Dutch advertisers have not noticed this surprising anomaly.