Joan Rivers calls Mrs. Obama “Blackie O”

January 26, 2011  |  

Recently famed comedian Joan Rivers met with Howard Stern on his radio show. During their interview Joan mentioned that she was going to include a joke in one of her acts, but decided to leave it out because she thought it might offend African Americans. Of course, Howard Stern, being who he is, asked what the joke was.

And Rivers said, referring to Mrs. Obama’s fashion sensibilities: “We used to have Jackie O, now we have Blackie O!”

Then she and Howie had a good ole time nagging about how anything directed toward African Americans is off limits. Rivers said she wouldn’t be offended if someone were to refer to her as “Jewie O.”

Oooh Joan, just when we thought you were cool.

While Ms. Rivers was probably trying to pay Lady O a compliment by comparing her fabulous fashion sense to former first lady Jackie Onassis, the message just doesn’t translate. Sure Mrs. Obama is undoubtedly black, but the term “blackie” was used to denigrate African Americans. It harkens back to a time where racially charged jokes were readily accepted and ultimately used as tools to oppress blacks in this country.

We’re not trying to go back there Joan.

If you knew it was potentially offensive why didn’t you keep it tucked away in the “thoughts-that-make-me-sound-like-an-insensitive-idiot” drawer?

What do you think, was Rivers comment ok?  Or did she cross the line?

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