“I understand you’re pretty funny as a dee-jay and, well, comedy is kind of a hobby of mine. Well, actually, it’s a little more than just a hobby, Reader’s Digest is considering publishing two of my jokes.”
When it came to a couple of jokes which surfaced over the weekend, however, there was more to it than an “in my heart, I know I am funny” atmosphere. In truth, I think Wanda Sykes is hilarious–especially in Curb Your Enthusiasm–and, for a guy whose job description does not include “get laughs,” David Feherty actually managed to bring a tear to my eye.
Truth be told, I laugh at just about anything. And, while Sykes’ comment about Rush Limbaugh at Saturday’s White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner certainly went a step too far, most of her other material was laugh-worthy. Joke about Limbaugh, if you’d like. Mention that the man probably drones on for an hour-and-a-half when he tries to order pizza. But wishing death upon somebody? Probably a little too far.
Which, I must admit, is a little interesting and very telling of my own political bias. When I read what CBS golf analyst David Feherty wrote in a magazine column about Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, I’m sorry to say, I pretty well laughed my head off. Here’s the comment in question:
“From my own experience visiting the troops in the Middle East, I can tell you this though: Despite how the conflict has been portrayed by our glorious media, if you gave any U.S. soldier a gun with two bullets in it, and he found himself in an elevator with Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Osama bin Laden, there’s a good chance that Nancy Pelosi would get shot twice, and Harry Reid and bin Laden would be strangled to death.”
Yeah. So much for “it’s not funny when you wish death upon somebody.” At first, I thought by laughing I was showing my true, hypocritical colors when it comes to Pelosi and Reid, a pair of people for whom I’ve never hidden my disdain. After thinking about it, though, I think the two jokes can be distinguished.
First, and most obviously, Pelosi and Reid are elected officials in the United States government, and actively have a hand in bringing our glorious nation to its knees, while Limbaugh is a private citizen with a radio show dedicated to exploring and shedding light upon, well, how Pelosi and Reid, as elected officials, are actively bringing our glorious nation to its knees.
Second, to wish kidney failure upon Limbaugh, undoubtedly another shot at his past prescription drug abuse, is a little different than to joke about how a United States soldier might react to having Pelosi, Reid and Osama Bin Laden in an elevator. Pelosi and Reid, like Bin Laden, have devoted much of the past five years in derailing and undermining efforts of our military overseas, demoralizing our troops, and providing aid and comfort to our sworn enemies. Reid, of course, likely caused mass celebrations in Al Qaeda training camps when he famously said, in April of 2007, that “this war is lost.” Pelosi has been even worse, among other things directly defying foreign policy orders from the White House and visiting the Syrian government, and actively putting our troops’ lives in jeopardy by drudging up decades-old procedural nonsense about the Turkish massacre of Armenians in the early 20th century, a move which angered the Turkish government enough that overflight and supply line agreements–vital to the U.S. effort in Iraq–were within hours of being rescinded. And Sykes said that Limbaugh was treasonous?
So, to review, we have a professional comedian, in scripted remarks, mention that she would like to see a private citizen’s kidneys fail because he dares to expose the lies, malfeasance, hypocrisy and treasonous conduct of our elected government officials, but when a golf announcer mentions in passing that our fighting men and women may not actually like or trust two particular elected government officials who have worked more for our enemies than our own soldiers, the former garners a presidential guffaw while the latter requires an apology. Something there isn’t right.
So, I laughed at Fenerty’s assessment, and shook my head at Sykes’ remarks. If that makes me insensitive or hypocritical, so be it. At least I’m not treasonous.