Over at Townhall, Michelle Malkin brutalizes Stephen Colbert, Comedy Central’s left-wing golden boy, who has been dealing for the better part of a week with charges of racism from the political left and right. Because he’s in a special protected class, Colbert thought he could get away with a skit that played on every Asian stereotype imaginable, from the exaggerated “ching-chong-ding-dong” dialect to the sexual “I take you to Bangkok” slang that’s been used for decades to humiliate Asian women.
Malkin correctly points out that Colbert would never single any other group out for this kind of satire, especially Muslims. She also shovels hell in the face of conservatives who defend Colbert because “it’s cool” to do so.
I know the difference between good-natured ethnic humor and the mean-spirited kind. One of the reasons I love comedians and sitcoms from the 1970’s is because they threaded this needle perfectly. “All In the Family,” “Sanford and Son,” “Good Times,” Carlin, Brenner, Pryor, etc. weren’t just about sex jokes. They made fun of everyone without demeaning anyone.
Colbert crossed the line because he was laughing at, and his fans were laughing at, Asians. Malkin lays it out:
“Oh, I ruv tea. It’s so good for you. You so pretty, American girl,” Colbert, in his conservative talk-show host persona, jibber-jabbers in the 2005 segment. “You come here. You kiss my tea make her sweet. I need no sugar when you around. Come on my rickshaw, I give you a ride to Bangkok.” Forward to 2014: To mock Snyder’s recent creation of a foundation to benefit Native Americans, Colbert replayed the skit and jeered in character that he was “willing to show the Asian community that I care by introducing the Ching-Chong Ding-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever.”
You can see who the butt of the joke is there, and it is not bigots or Colbert’s politically correct target of the day: Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder.
Intent matters. With the use of the name Redskins, Snyder is not trying to demean the American Indian, which is likely why polls show that Indians take no offense from the name.
Colbert was mocking and demeaning Asians, Asians took offense, and they had every right to.
All of today’s Top 5 here.