I think the joke was funny, and it was racial in substance, but I don't think it was racist because it wasn't told by a racist.
The difference between DeNiro making a black joke and New Gingrich, Rick Santorum, or one of their supporters making a black joke is that "conservatives" by and large - and VERY by and VERY large - are racists. They are homophobes. They are misogynists.
When "conservatives" tell a joke it is intended to inflict harm upon and deride the object of the joke. Progressives say funny things about race, sex, and sexuality, that are sincerely funny, and are not even remotely divisive or insulting (except to those who want to capitalize on the fears of stupid white people: "conservatives").
It's really not rocket science. In some circles "conservatives" promote and brag about their racism, in others they deflect criticism by saying that Democrats are racist.
It's the same old "conservative" strategy that works well with stupid, naive, fearful white people. They use the I know you are but what am I argument. Like bullies in the school yard, there isn't a single "conservative" politician capable of developing a position on race and class that isn't totally offensive to anyone who embraces the notion of progress and freedom. They are like children trying to have a conversation with grown-ups about intimacy.
"Conservatives" want to repeal the Civil Rights Act, they want to eliminate all programs for the needy, they want to cut the taxes of the most privileged while raising the taxes of the working poor, they want to eliminate all funding for women's reproductive health care services, and they want to ban gay marriage. Yet, they've convinced stupid people that they are not racist, misogynist or homophobic.
This is their plan, and they are completely up-front about it.
Racists will vote Republican because they are afraid of blacks and the "conservatives" campaigns on their fear of black people, homophobes who will vote for them because they cannot handle their own innately fluid sexuality, and people in debt to their eyeballs will vote for them because conservatives have convinced them that the bad economy is the fault of the poor. (How the poor control the economy is beyond me).
But back to DeNiro. You see, his racial joke is funny because he isn't a racist and he doesn't hide behind the mantle of political correctness. It's hilarious to say that America isn't ready for a white first lady. It's absurd and wonderful.
People who are real racists ("conservatives") have jumped on this remark to deflect attention away from their own racism. It's the same old bully tactic: "I know you are but what am I."
Sadly, it works with most stupid white people (that is "conservatives").
Blame the poor for the economy they don't control.
Blame the progressives for the racism you promote.
Blame taxing the rich for the deficit you pretend to oppose.
And yes, almost every "conservative" I know is a racist who will insist they are not a racist.
I think it's hilarious to say that America isn't ready for a white first lady, and I think the racists in America have seized the remark to camouflage their own racism.
Awww . . . Newt Gingrich was offended? Puh-lease!
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