Cinnamon Stillwell

I’m the West Coast Representative for Campus Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum that focuses on Middle East studies. I was a political columnist for (San Francisco Chronicle online) from 2004-2008. I've written for the American Thinker, Frontpage Magazine, Family Security Matters, Accuracy In Media, Newsbusters, Israel National News, The Jewish Policy Center, J-The Jewish News Weekly of N. CA, Intellectual Conservative and many others. More info at

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Remember When Ethnic Jokes Were Funny?

I must admit, I found myself watching one of those Time/Life DVD collection infomercials last night (and not for the first time; love the 70s soul one with all the great old clips of bands performing on Soul Train that you never see anywhere else) and roaring with laughter at all the hilarious clips of brilliant comics and actors of yesteryear taking part in Dean Martin's Celebrity Roasts

It brought me back to the days, both before and during my time, when ethnic jokes were a staple of humor and no one on the receiving end--none were spared, which was the beauty of it--got offended, traumatized, hysterical, or felt the need to sue anyone. It was a way of reveling in the little truths that underlie stereotypes about us all and blowing off steam about each other that is sadly missing in this day and age of hypersensitivity, speech codes, self-censorship, apology tours, and, in a sense, puritanism. 

Watch this clip (plenty more at YouTube, too) to get a taste of the good, bad old days.

Cross-posted from Facebook