Jay Leno Calls Mayor "Mr. Inappropriate"
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."
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."