Hillary Clinton was attending New York City’s annual Inner Circle Dinner, an event which brings together New York politicians to perform embarrassing comedy skits on stage.
Clinton poked fun at de Blasio’s late endorsement, saying:
I just have to say thanks for the endorsement, Bill. Took you long enough,” she said to laughter.
At that point, de Blasio told a joke that silenced the room except for a few uncomfortable groans.
Sorry Hillary, I was running on C.P. time,” de Blasio replied.
C.P. time refers to “colored people time,” which is an old stereotype about how African Americans generally don’t start their events on time. It insinuates another stereotype depicting black people as lazy and/or incompetent.
The only black actor on stage with Clinton and de Blasio, Leslie Odom Jr., expressed his displeasure to de Blasio, replying: “That’s not — I don’t like jokes like that, Bill.”
Clinton tried to salvage the awkward exchange with a joke. She turned to Odom Jr. and said “Cautious Politician Time.” Afterward, she turned back to de Blasio and offering a little support she said, “I’ve been there.”
Here’s the video.
Here’s something to keep in mind: de Blasio is married to a black woman and has biracial children. He also has a history of standing up to the NYPD over their racist “stop and frisk” policy. This feud made national headlines when members of the NYPD turned their backs to de Blasio at the funeral of a fallen NYPD officer.
de Blasio is not a racist.
However, this incident does go to show how even the most well-meaning people can still fall victim to America’s ugly racist legacy by even innocently joking about black stereotypes.
Some people are going to use the tired excuse, “If a black person said that…”
Let’s just stop right there. Every culture has its own form of politically incorrect humor in which they joke about stereotypes amongst themselves. That isn’t just something black people do, every culture on the planet does the same. It’s incredibly rude and sensitive for people from other cultures to pretend that they’ve earned the privilege of communicating at the same level without enduring the unique hardships and challenges inherent within that culture.
As for Clinton, it’s unclear if this was an impromptu skit, in which Clinton had to react to de Blasio’s terrible joke or if they had practiced this routine.
If Clinton had full knowledge about what de Blasio was going to say and didn’t see fit to insist that they tell a different joke, then that speaks to her judgment. Fair is fair, if Donald Trump were in a similar situation, liberals would be all over him. However, if Clinton was reacting to an awful adlib attempt at humor, then she did a splendid job in defusing tensions and helping de Blasio save some face.
This incident shouldn’t be blown out of proportion. de Blasio’s not a bad guy; he just told a bad joke.
Featured image Screengrab via YouTube