April 30, 2012

Topeka mayor tells "rain dance" joke

Racist Joke by Topeka Mayor Disappoints Prairie Band Tribe

Jay Leno Calls Mayor "Mr. Inappropriate"Last Monday, Topeka Mayor Bill Bunten made a racist joke involving dating an "Indian girl" during his State of the Community Event in front of a crowd of 350. The event was sponsored by the Topeka Chamber of Commerce.

Here's what happened:

In seeking to make fun of Shawnee County Commission Chairman Ted Ensley, after following him to the microphone for his speech, Bunten made several disrespectful jokes including one that said that in Ensley's younger days, Ensley dated an Indian girl, "but when they went out dancing, it rained."

The Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribal Council issued a statement to the Topeka Capital Journal in response to the negative joke.

After learning of Bunten's remarks, Topeka attorney Pedro Irigonegaray, who was not at the event, publicly suggested that Bunten should apologize for the remarks that also were disrespectful to women and other groups.

In their statement, the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation Tribal Council said Bunten's remarks were disappointing and disparaging and that the tribe has given millions of dollars to the Topeka community and northeast Kansas to help with their nonprofit organizations and schools and that they were disheartened that Bunten would discredit them and other groups which did nothing but perpetuate a negative stereotyping of people.

“I don't think I have anything to apologize for,” Bunten responded.

“They were just little jokes and probably were inappropriate, but I didn't mean any harm, and I don't think it did any harm to anyone.”

Bunten told the Topeka newspaper there are jokes about all kinds of people--listing the young, old, Christian and Jewish populations as examples--and said people need to "not be so sensitive about things."

The Mayor's comments landed him on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno as "Mr. Inappropriate."
Comment:  Bunten obviously doesn't get the point. Jokes about the old and young apply to everyone. They don't discriminate by race.

Christian jokes are about the group in power in America--a legitimate target for humor. Jewish jokes are borderline--it depends on who's telling them and what the joke is.

A much better example is Polish jokes, which were hugely popular for a time. Why don't you hear Polish jokes anymore? Because they're an example of the American majority targeting a minority. They exist to put or keep the minority in its place.

Our society eventually realized this and pressured people to stop telling these "jokes." Same with many other ethnic jokes. Nowadays it's mainly blacks who tell black jokes, Jews who tell Jewish jokes, etc. And that form of self-criticism is mostly appropriate.

For more on stereotypical "humor," see Tipi "Housing Solution" Cartoon and Treasurer Mocks Natives "in Fun."


Shadow Wolf said...

Isn't that irony?

As it turns out Bill Burten is a sitting Republican mayor.


Hence their gender-based Jihadist "war on women" circa 2012.

Anonymous said...

"Hence their gender-based Jihadist "war on women" circa 2012."

I see Shadow Wolf is mindlessly parroting Obama 2012 campaign slogans that have nothing to do with reality.

Shadow Wolf said...

"I see Shadow Wolf is mindlessly parroting Obama 2012 campaign slogans that have nothing to do with reality."

Actually, the Republican's hatred of women has everything to do with "reality". First, Rush Limbaugh showed his true colors. Then Arizona's sock-puppet of a Gov.--Jan Brewer has just signed a bill that bans funding for Planned Parenthood.

You're just butt hurt that the Republicans do not have the majority of support from women. They make up half the voting bloc power.

And by the way, your pal Rob here at bluecorncomics is known Democrat. He voted for Obama.

Anonymous said...

He's a Republican. When he prayed for rain, the drought got worse.

(I know, Rick Perry's no longer running, but still, it's funny.)

Anonymous said...

"Actually, the Republican's hatred of women has everything to do with "reality"."

This is just a hollow campaign slogan. To "support" your idea you pulled a few unrelated things out of thin air which do nothing to support your cause. Like the issue of giving corporate welfare to the abortion industry (Planned Parenthood).

Also, most Americans oppose abortion.. and more women than men oppose it. Your idea backfires.

Rob said...

According to a recent Gallup poll (May 3-6, 2012), 25% of Americans say abortion should be legal always. 52% say it should be legal sometimes. Only 20% say it should be illegal always. So you're wrong on that point.

Source: http://pollingreport.com/abortion.htm

Only 3% of Planned Parenthood's funding goes to abortion services. So 3% of the conservative attacks are due to a moral conviction against abortion. The other 97% are a war on women.

Here's more on the subject. Educated yourself about how many thousands of laws Republicans have proposed to limit women's rights.


In the 2010 midterm elections, the Republican Party won the majority in the House of Representatives. On January 4, 2011, the day after they convened, Daily Kos writer Kaili Joy Gray wrote an article entitled "The Coming War on Women." In the article, she outlined many of the measures that Republicans would later push through the House of Representatives, including personhood laws, fetal pain laws, and the effort to defund Planned Parenthood.

2011 and 2012 have seen an unprecedented rise in the passage of provisions related to women's health and reproductive rights. State legislatures across the United States introduced 1100 provisions restricting women's reproductive rights in 2011. The first quarter of 2012 saw an additional 944 provisions introduced in state legislatures, half of which would restrict access to abortion. Legislation has focused on mandatory ultrasounds, narrowing the time when abortions may be performed and limiting insurance coverage of abortion.


Top 10 Shocking Attacks from the GOP's War on Women

[Only two involve abortion.]