Tracy Morgan’s Homophobic Rant: When is a joke not a joke?
Posted by Heather
Personally? To me? A joke is always a joke as long as you volunteer to hear it.
That means, if you go to watch a comedian, it implies that you’ve entered into an agreement with said comedian that he or she is permitted to express their views and opinions using whatever language they please.
That is implied even if they are one that seems to be rather well-known for pushing the envelope and being controversial.
Otherwise, why would you pay to see them?
Enter Kevin Rogers.
Kevin Rogers is an apparently homosexual, white man and a photographer in the audience at a recent show put on by Tracy Morgan. And he apparently got extremely offended by some of the jokes that Tracy Morgan made at the show.
Kevin Rogers did not merely get annoyed, but went off on a rant on his Facebook page. In it, he rehashes some of the jokes that Tracy Morgan allegedly said during his on-state performance (paraphrased from the statements on Kevin Rogers’ Facebook page):
“Being ‘born that way’ is bulls**t”
“Gay is something kids learn from the media”
“Kids [bullied for being gay] should stop whining about being bullied and beat the f**kers bullying them”
“If his son came home gay he better talk to him ‘like a man’ [not in the stereotypical high-pitched homosexual man’s voice] or else he’d stab him to death”
“Obama should stop [supporting gays]”
Kevin Rogers stated that at the end of his “homophobic rant”, Tracy Morgan received plenty of applause and “You go Tracy’s”.
He finished his statements saying that he wouldn’t even go into Tracy Morgan’s other rants about women “staying in the kitchen and…not being CEOs” or “mothers of retards” and was no longer interested in Tracy Morgan’s comedy.
He accused Tracy Morgan of being hateful toward homosexuals, not simply making jokes. Kevin Rogers also stated he wasn’t angry but was very disappointed. His entire post started with a description of how well he is able to take a joke and how thick-skinned he is.
All of this makes me wonder why Lisa Lampanelli isn’t under fire constantly?
She sets out to be controversial and offensive in a way that turns me off completely (she talks offensively for the sake of talking offensively, not for the sake of being entertaining). Apparently, “gays love Lisa Lampanelli” even.
Other comedians get to be just as bad. Perhaps Kevin Rogers merely hasn’t been in the audience of some of the other stand-up comedians whose routines I’ve heard.
Not to mention the ghastly things that were originally said on Encyclopedia Dramatica (now gone, but duplicated on that link) and other sites and people that have made tasteless jokes about everything from abortions and rape, the disabled, racism, sexism, child molestation, violence, eating disorders, divorce, death, suicide, slavery, and natural disasters.
Here’s a warning – don’t click any of those links unless you’re not going to get offended. If you don’t know, don’t click. Don’t even bother.
Apparently people only get offended by things that matter to them, but don’t care if it’s something that happens to others.
Skinny people generally wouldn’t have any reservations about laughing at fat people jokes. Fat people are more likely to be offended by them, obviously.
Black people frequently laugh at a stereotypical black joke said by a black person. If a white person makes a stereotypical black person joke, it’s racist.
If a woman makes jokes about other women, people laugh. If a man makes jokes about other women, women (and men who are whipped enough) call it sexist.
And if a homosexual person makes homosexual jokes, it’s considered funny. But if a straight person makes pointed jokes about homosexuals, it’s offensive.
Everything these days is considered offensive by someone. Personally it drives me insane. I am offended by certain things as well. And you know what? I avoid those things.
If I were a guidance counselor and a kid came to me saying he or she was having homosexual desires and didn’t know how to handle it, the kid (and the kid’s parents) would be right to get offended if I went off saying I’d stab the kid if they were mine and chose to be gay.
If Tracy Morgan holds a stand-up show and says that to his audience (which technically he didn’t, according to Kevin Rogers Facebook retelling) and there is a homosexual person in the audience that paid to be there knowing that Tracy Morgan has an offensive type style, I would expect that person to be a little shocked
At worst, I’d expect them to simply not find that particular joke funny.
Why is it that Tracy Morgan had to apologize? Obviously he doesn’t mean he will literally murder his own child should he choose homosexuality.
Yes, that is an extreme metaphor, but what’s the difference between that and some annoyed neighbor saying “If those damn kids don’t turn down their stupid music, I’m going to go blow up their house!”
What is the real point of offense here? Are people offended because he made a really shocking statement? Are they offended because he feels it’s a choice to be gay?
Reading some of Tracy Morgan’s jokes that Kevin Rogers posted didn’t actually sound nearly as bad to me as they are being made to sound. Example, according to Kevin Rogers’ retelling of the incident on Facebook, Tracy didn’t say he’d “stab his son for being gay”. He said his son better talk to him “as a man” as opposed to using the stereotypical gay male voice.
If you want to take a technical version of his statement, you could say he’s actually saying, “I don’t approve of your gay lifestyle so please respect that by not flaunting it around to me; I wouldn’t appreciate that.”
When he talked about the bullying, he didn’t say “Just quit whining about being bullied,” he basically stated “Fight back. Just because you are a male with a different sexual preference, don’t act weak and unmanly.”
When you look at it that way, is it really so offensive? If you don’t think what he says is true, why get offended? Why is he not entitled to express his opinion?
If you have the freedom to complain about what he says, why should he not have the freedom to say it?
What really bothers me is lumping people together with their actions, instead of defining the two. I was always taught, “You don’t call a child bad, because they aren’t a bad kid. You call their behavior bad.”
The reason those jokes even exist isn’t because there are certain males and females that feel more comfortable with members of their own gender. Those jokes, just like racist, sexist, and many other general-stereotyping jokes exist because some people act in ways that are annoying and obnoxious to other people, so someone decides to make light of it.
What offends me? It offends me when you come around me in a gaudy fashion, blatantly being rude, obnoxious, annoying, or disrespectful about my feelings and opinions, and then claim that I am homophobic, sexist, racist, or any other -ist word you can come up with.
If you respect me, I’ll respect you, regardless of what your race, gender, appearance, sexual orientation, etc is.
Then again, if more people acted that way there’d be fewer comedians, fewer jokes, and fewer offended people.
I guess people shouldn’t change – it wouldn’t be as funny.