Racism: It's Wrong!

Today's column addresses "racism" and how it's "wrong." And for those who don't know, "racism" means judging the entirety of a different race in an unfair manner. For example: Canadians are liars. Now, as we all know, most Canadians are liars; but for the benefit of those very few Canadians who tell the truth, we must discount the phrase "Canadians are liars" as a racist-tinged remark.

However! There is a critical difference between "racism" and "making fun of someone." Example: Canadians are funny-looking. This is not racism, because being funny-looking has nothing to do with a person's race. Placed in this context, you can say all sorts of things about Canadians--they have syphilis, they're boring, they're mentally retarded, they smell like they fell in a tub of donkey shit--without fear of being branded a racist.

However, again! This is not the case for certain races which have been given "blanket immunity," and are for all practical purposes un-make-fun-of-able. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to decipher who you can laugh at, and who you can't. Just to get you started, here's an abbreviated list of those to whom you CAN level an appropriate amount of derision: the Canadians, the Germans, the French, the Limeys, the Rooskies, the RED Chinese, not to mention the South Carolinian, the Californian, the Mormon, the Hippie, the Military, the Pervert, the Actor, and especially the Government. There are also those who I haven't quite decided if it's okay to make fun of or not, so maybe you can give it a shot with these guys and let me know how it worked out: the Spaniard, the Eskimo, the Hawaiian, the Old Person, and the Yuppie Bank Investor who also happens to be Native American.

It's all very complicated, yes? Yes. However, a very interesting racial experiment is coming on TV this week, and I thought you might like to be informed. It's called Banzai (debuting on Fox, Sunday, July 13, 8:30 pm). Originally a cult favorite from the ordinarily mentally inferior country of England, Banzai is a "comedic interactive betting program" based on Japanese-style game shows, where elaborate pranks are pulled and viewers are encouraged to wager on the outcome.

For example! In one segment entitled "The Man Dog Stick Question," a stick is thrown into a swimming pool and viewers are invited to bet on who will retrieve it first: Todd Bridges (Willis from Diff'rent Strokes) or a dog? There's also "Mr. Shake Hands Man" who tries to see how long he can shake the hand of a celebrity (like Frasier's Kelsey Grammer) before the star yanks it away.

Banzai is hosted by a cast of Japanese eccentrics, and when clips of the show were first aired on the USA channel in 2001, some Asian American groups hit the roof because of the American actor who provided the dubbed-over, really bad Japanese accents. (Mmmm... racist!) However, producers say that this time around actual Japanese people will be providing the really bad Japanese accents. (Mmmm... okay, not racist!)

So in conclusion, "racism" is overwhelmingly wrong, and making fun of certain people is funny. Enjoy Banzai and let me know what you think. (By the way, I was only kidding earlier about Canadians. Only 82 percent of them have syphilis.)