In Defense of Racial Humor

If laughter really is the best medicine, it's no wonder race relations are in a state of ill health. Many years ago I spent quite a bit of time with a Zambian friend.  He remarked one day that he found America's hang-up with racial humor a bit strange, as racial jokes were not at all off-limits in his country.  And call it my one concession to multiculturalism, but neither were they off-limits in our relationship.  We would occasionally engage in innocent racial humor just as we would any other kind of jesting - and no hate-speech charges were contemplated. The notion that racial humor is inherently damaging is utter nonsense.  Whatever the type of humor, it can be innocent or cutting, good-natured or mean-spirited, and the difference is almost always obvious.  And this is true of most any kind of expression.  Political commentary, music, or art can be used to clarify or confuse, or to enlighten or benight, just as firearms can be used to protect...(Read Full Article)