Let’s Cut the Bull on the Joke Defense

The idiot ball has passed from Megyn Kelly to Justine Sacco in regards to racial stupidity. I don’t think these two women are racist, exactly. But they are racially ignorant, hence the public slip of the tongue remarks of white privilege. Berating a blogger for playing with the notion of a penguin Santa Claus, vehemently stating that Santa is JUST white, claiming Jesus is also white (categorically false), and suggesting there’s a privilege in being white in Africa concerning AIDS.

The common defense of this stupidity is the “it was a joke” line — and this is where I take issue.

You see, I never been a fan of deceit. I never liked it, I personally don’t like being lied to, or hearing lies at all. It offends me when a person is dishonest, and it offends me deeper when the lie is weak, transparent, or virtually useless. Claiming you were joking after a particular backlash, is a useless lie.

The problem with using this Minotaurian fecal matter is that for starters, it wasn’t funny. At all. Nor would it ever become funny. George Carlin? Funny. Chris Rock? Funny. There’s nothing funny about HIV rates in Africa, or the vehement notion what Santa (or Jesus) is “just” white. No one pays you as a comedian.

Second, if you think it’s comedy, you are a blithering idiot. Sure, you don’t actually think it’s funny because you more so claimed the name of comedy in defense rather than honestly trying to be funny. But let’s be clear — the fact that you said something offensive or stupid and then you want to mask the behavior with the notion that you are a tone-deaf comedian, makes you an idiot, twice.

I remember in my youth, we had mom jokes. Sometimes when you say something very vulgar about someone’s mom, anger ensues. Fights may happen. This brings me to my third point: the fact (or fiction) that it’s a joke is irrelevant, because claiming so doesn’t undo the offense. It doesn’t reverse, anything. It never has.

Fourth… let’s play devil’s advocate and suggest they genuinely were trying to be full fledged, Richard Pryors. This runaway train raises the question, “then who finds it funny?” Now, who exactly would find Sacco or Kelly funny? The few racist/racially ignorant people who defend Sacco? Or the millions of people who were reduced to a serious epidemic that’s used to stereotype an entire continent? The panelists who were in Kelly’s Santa rant? Or the millions of parents and children all over the world lacking representations of people of color in the media? The fourth point is a point of reflection: what kind of a sick person would consider this funny?

Now, it’s possible to joke about, almost anything. One satirical writer suggested Santa is definitely white due to keeping a mass of darker, unpaid workers, for example. For this type of joke to exist, an awareness or concern for slavery must exist. Awareness, concern, understanding — these are the things that both women in question, lack.

The notion that either of them have the cultural sophistication to even think about using satire, is bull. Claiming humor after a backlash is nothing more than an excuse to get off the hook, for poor decisions. So let’s cut the bull — stop using the “it’s a joke” defense, people are not stupid, it doesn’t work, it only makes you look worse. And that’s the Bigger Picture.

Articles submitted by freelance writers. If you would like to submit an article to the Onyx Truth, please click on the SUBMISSIONS link at the very top of the site for more info.


  1. thekid7777

    December 26, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    I get it now. It’s not funny to makes jokes that minorities might find offensive but it’s excusable to make jokes implying that Santa Claus is a slave owner, profiting off the labor of his “dark skinned” elves. It’s excusable because you think it represents some sort of understanding of slavery. Well I guess it must be OK to make Holocaust jokes so long as it’s done with some demonstration of understanding. I understand the double standard now. Thanks, that was very enlightening. I now know exactly what sort of person you are. People like you (black, white, brown or yellow) are the reason America is still so divided.

  2. The Bigger Picture

    December 26, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    1] Their statements, were not funny. At all.
    2] You cannot defend stupidity by suggesting you are a stupid comic.
    3] Saying it was a joke (conveniently AFTER) doesn’t magically reverse time and fix the offense.
    4] Can you honestly say, YOU got a good laugh from their “joke”? Who is it funny to?

  3. Star Seed

    December 26, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    Really, kid? Who are you “kidding”? The remarks made from both of these individuals were downright racist and ignorant. They weren’t joking and backpedalled only after being called out. And where did anyone mention the Holocaust or that it was okay to make fun or joke about the Holocaust? How do you even equivocate the two? Seems as if you are pulling points out of your fourth point of contact.

    • thekid7777

      December 26, 2013 at 11:56 pm

      I never said their comments were funny or appropriate. What I did was point out the double standard being perpetuated here. The author slams these two ladies but then says it’s excusable to make jokes about Santa being a slave driver because it demonstrates understanding of slavery. So by his logic it must be OK to make holocaust jokes so long as they demonstrate understanding of the Holocaust. You can’t have it both ways. Either everyone is allowed to say offensive shit or no one is.

  4. The Bigger Picture

    December 27, 2013 at 12:28 am

    “I never said their comments were funny or appropriate. ”

    ^Then why vehemently defend their useless claims? If you don’t think their comments are funny, then WHY suggest that they were genuine jokes? You done this on a last article, stood behind the pathetic “but it’s a joke” defense. I mean, it’s okay to backtrack and say “yeah, they are bullshitting,” but no, you seek to defend that. So, IF you are not among the alleged comedy audience of the women in question, then WHY heavily insist that they were, *ahem*, “joking”?

  5. The Bigger Picture

    December 27, 2013 at 12:32 am

    Star has a point…

    …Can you give us an example of a “holocaust joke” you have in mind? It seems that you, as Star said, pulled that one out of nowhere (straw argument). Do you have anything in the ballpark as an example, or you are just… rambling?

    Before you answer, I do like to thank you for your response, regardless of lack of agreement. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas Mr. Kid, regardless of the vitriol I do consider you a part of the Onyx Truth family now!

%d bloggers like this: