Not Racist, just like the jokes.

Jesse Duncan

My name is Jesse; I am (mostly) caucasian, and I like jokes. Even racial ones.

Let me start by saying that I have always thought that treating someone differently because of the color of their skin, or their accent, is stupid. Not ignorant, which can be fixed through education – stupid. I am a firm believer in the words of Dr. King, when he said that a person should be judged by the content of their character, not the color of their skin.

That said, I LOVE jokes; comedy is my coping mechanism, my way of defusing escalated situations, and my escape from reality. Bad puns, funny stories, wordplay, it doesn’t matter the form, so long as laughter is the result. As with life, in comedy I refuse to discriminate based on race, but to a lot of people, that makes me seem like a racist. Why is it that society considers it reasonable for black comedians to make derogatory comparisons to white people (“when a black guy does something, he does it all cool like *this,* but when a white guy does something, he does it all uptight like *that*), but not the other way around? I disagree; if something is funny, it’s funny, dammit, and to say that one racial group has the right to make jokes about a topic that another racial group is not allowed to is racism, pure and simple.

Of course, the comedy factor is only half the reason that I actually enjoy racial humor. The other reason is a matter of personal philosophy – if you can laugh at something, it loses all power over you. When I hear comedians like Chris Rock make his racial jokes, of course I laugh – they’re funny! But I also laugh because I know that, by taking the words humorously, I am actively refusing to let a racist get the better of me. Besides, it is my opinion that if you can’t laugh at your own faults and flaws, you don’t have the right to make fun of anyone else.


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