Sunday, December 5, 2010

SNL: Columbus Polish

UPDATE, November 6, 2011: SNL does it again, more Polish slurs.

Saturday Night Live was in a time warp.

Although it was a new episode with Robert DeNiro as the host, the sketches were mostly rehashed stuff.

It was almost like watching a rerun.

"Weekend Update" turned the clock back decades with a Polish joke.

SETH MEYERS: A new book called Columbus: The Untold Story claims that Christopher Columbus was not Italian, but actually the son of an exiled Polish king. Well, that would certainly explain why he missed India by 15,000 miles.

A Polish joke?

Not cool.

SNL is really struggling, resorting to ethnic slurs.


The Polish joke begins at about 00:25.


Harvey Finkelstein said...

Speaking of ethnic slurs:

And this woman was in the front row of the White House press "corpse" for how many years?

Aneta said...

The joke is very offensive to Polish people. Is this what we get in exchange for sending troops to Afganistan and Iraq to fight for America's freedom? I am Polish, CPA with master's degree, and every day I meet Americans whom I could call ignorant or less educated. Why go that way?

Mary said...

Right, Harvey. Helen Thomas appears to be a dyed-in-the-wool anti-Semite and she's considered a media icon.

Aneta, I agree. It's an offensive joke. Not funny.

Harvey Finkelstein said...

Funny Polish jokes that make fun of the stereotype are cute, I think. For example, a Polish friend used to own a golf course. He named it Polish Pines and the logo was an upside down pine tree. Pretty funny. I think we should all try to not take ourselves too seriously and then when something is truly offensive maybe we could more effectively deal with it.

Mary said...

True, we all need to be able to laugh at ourselves.

But the fact that one can identify a "Polish joke," that there's a category of jokes mocking people of Polish heritage as stupid and backward, shows how that offensive stereotype was allowed to flourish and take root.

Personally, I don't think the "dumb polack" stuff is cute.

Mike Dawson said...

Oy vey, now I get it. Jokes regarding someone else's heritage are s'posed to be funny, such as a Jewish person enjoying Polish jokes...but heaven forbid should an American of Arab decent says anything negative about Israel. Roger that, comrad, we must never kibitz or kvetch a negatory thought regarding anyone or anything related to Israel. I've never been one to dwell on heritage - I figured once into the melting pot we all became Americans...but, I just can't get past wondering if a Polish CPA with Master's degree practices in Poland, and if so, how is it they meet so many Americans? And why is it that some find distain in ethnic humor but have no problem calling those with differing political & social beliefs other, less-flattering reindeer names? Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Bblitzen and Rudolph. Or, rants about trayf progressive and liberal shtick? Shemozzle. (

Harvey Finkelstein said...

The golf shirts with the upside-down pine tree logo sold like hotcakes and my Polish friend laughed all the way to the bank.

Mary said...

I think the upside down pine tree logo must be one of those instances of people not taking themselves too seriously.

Certainly, your friend was being good-natured about it. It wasn't meant to be a symbol of self-loathing.

I'm reminded of Wisconsin's beloved Alan Kulwicki and his "Polish victory lap."

I guess if you're of Polish heritage, you can say and do those things. If you're not and you're using ethnic stereotypes, then it's an attack and not so funny.

It's different when it comes from within the community.

It's definitely a double standard.

To me, SNL's joke was in bad taste.

Jaquelyn Chan said...

Sacha Baron Cohen is jewish, yet those characters he has created that are "stupid" are all non-jews. Why?

When Lorne Michaels shows us all how to just laugh at ourselves by representing all jews (and only jews) as stupid on SNL, then the rest of us will follow his lead and laugh at ourselves without taking offense.

james said...

can somebody explain this joke for me?

Jim said...

I'm glad people are speaking out against Seth Myer's anti-Polish joke.

His portrayal of Polish people as having inferior intelligence is similar to how the Nazis portrayed the Polish in their propaganda.

The media has hid the fact that these so called "Polish jokes" originated from Nazi propaganda and were introduced into the US in the 1960's by NBC-TV. Yes that's right.... the same TV network that has Seth Myers.

A certain element of NBC-TV has some kind of vendetta against Polish people and have been trying to condition the American public to have the same anti-Polish prejudice that they have.

These racist Polish jokes have largely gone away, but I guess Seth Myers wants to test the waters to see if he can bring back this hate-through-humor against Polish people.

Its disgusting.

Rich Dunwoody said...

Seth Myers and Saturday Night Live must be desperate if they feel the need to stir up anti-Polish Bigotry to get ratings.

Seth Myers is an Anti-Polish Bigot indeed for his racist Polish joke.

Lance said...

I definitely agree that Seth Meyers is an Anti-Polish Bigot.

To think in this day and age Seth Meyers would drudge up old racist "Polish jokes", just goes to show Seth Meyer's Anti-Polish Bigotry.

But 3 years ago, his co-host Amy Poehler was bashing Polish people with these racist "Polish jokes" also, so it appears there is some kind of Anti-Polish Prejudice among Seth Meyers, Amy Poehler and others over there at NBC-TV.

Seth Meyers the Anti-Polish Bigot said...

Seth Meyer's racist "Polish joke" proves that he's an Anti-Polish Bigot.

These degrading subhuman intelligence jokes about Polish people, is the same anti-Polish propaganda the Nazis used against the Polish people.

Its true the origin of "Polish Jokes" is Nazi propaganda.

Some Polish Guy said...

Holy shit, all of you need to chill out. You guys are overreacting big time. This is probably the 3rd Polish joke they have made on the show in the last 36 seasons. It's SNL for God's sake, hardly an outlet for some anti-Polish propaganda campaign. For you to actually say this is way below the belt is just mind boggling. Ok it's not your type of comedy, that's cool. But it hardly warrants any bellyaching like all of you are doing. Big deal, they made a Polish joke, doesn't bother me.

You don't hear Italians complaining when, god forbid, the actors portray Italians in a ski

It's a comedy show, and for you to compare it to Nazi propaganda is outrageous.

Some Polish Guy said...

*That was skit, not ski

NBC-TV's Anti-Polish Bigotry said...

To "some Polish guy",

But its true that subhuman intelligence jokes about Polish people had origins from Nazi propaganda. That's because the Nazi Germans saw the Polish people as having subhuman intelligence.

The two speeches Hitler gave after he invaded Poland, contained anti-Polish slurs and references that are similar to those anti-Polish slurs in those NBC-TV shows that have degraded Polish people. Hitler used the word "Polish" in the same way Seth Meyers and other NBC-TV anti-Polish Bigots have.

As for Saturday Night Live, its part of NBC-TV which is notorious for its decades of bashing Polish people with subhuman intelligence jokes.

NBC-TV hasn't bashed Polish people in recent years as much as it used to because Polish people have protested and complained to them.

I guess Seth Meyers and that other Polish-Hater Amy Poehler (in 2008) were testing the waters to see if they can bring back some subhuman intelligence jokes about Polish people.

But NBC-TV was the TV network that introduced Nazi subhuman intelligence jokes about Polish people into the US in the 1960's in shows like "Laugh-In", "The Tonight Show", "The John Laroquette show" and yes also "Saturday Night Live".

Hitler also had jokes about Blacks, Jews and other ethnic groups. Why doesn't NBC-TV or Seth Meyers have degrading jokes about Jews that Hitler said about them?

Why is it politically correct for TV media to degrade Poles as having subhuman qualities/intelligence but not Jews, Blacks, and other politically correct ethnic groups?

Anonymous said...

One of my buddies was sitting at a bar one night when he wanted to tell a polish joke. So, he asked the guy next to him if he wanted to hear a polish joke. The guy responded that he and his two buddies were all trained Marines, all over 200 pounds, and all Polish. He then asked if my buddy still wanted to tell the joke, but my friend decided that having to repeat himself three times did nout sound fun.

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, when I lived in Warsaw in 2013, my Polish friends thought there was nothing wrong with joking about theaters being shot up (the year after the Dark Knight Rises incident in Colorado) and the World Trade Center attacks and seemed baffled when I was shocked to hear them talk like that. They assured me that it's the Polish-style of humor, so... I can't imagine they'd be much offended by this...