Abcarian: In that racist leaked recording, L.A. sees its true reflection — and it’s ugly.
On Friday, comedian Aziz Ansari released a leaked audio recording in which he’s recorded discussing how he feels about his girlfriend Maya Rudolph. It contains a series of racist comments Ansari made when he was a teenager. The content is awful and, unfortunately, Ansari’s response to the media’s attempts to spin it into a “vile racist joke” is not what you would expect from someone who’s put so much effort into creating a career out of poking fun at the president and the people in his administration. “It’s horrible,” Ansari said. “It’s so horrible that I can’t imagine what that feels like.” (You can listen to the recording below.)
Ansari isn’t the only celebrity to be caught engaging in racist online comments. In fact, he’s just the latest. It’s important to point out that these are not jokes. You can, in fact, listen to the audio and hear what you’re hearing. The audio was released by a group of comedy critics called “The Onion”; Ansari is one of them. The audio shows that these comedians were not only aware of the negative impact they were having on race relations, but they were proud of the fact they’d created a racist joke.
“It’s a classic example of racism,” comedian Patton Oswalt said of the recording. “That’s one of the things that I’m glad I don’t live in L.A. or New York or some of these other places where racism would be acceptable and inoffensive.”
“I don’t even enjoy listening to racist jokes,” Patton also said. “It’s like: ‘We’re going to be racist and then laugh at it,’ but the only time I ever laugh at a racist joke is when I’m on stage doing it. This is not me laughing at a racist joke, this is me on stage being a racist joke.”
The way Patton talked about his career, it’s clear that these comedians are not making jokes about racism. They’re not laughing at a racist