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Author Topic: Jokes at our expense  (Read 2494 times)

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Offline tigger2376

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Jokes at our expense
« on: July 20, 2007, 06:48:04 PM »
I've put this in this part of the forums because I dont think its just for 'casual' conversation. Anyone who knows me or reads my threads, would, I'd like to think, get an idea that I have a pretty good sense of humour and am not easily offended. Theres a programme on BBC2 in UK at 9pm thursdays called 'mock the week'. I love it, satirical, qiuck fire, very funny. However, in last two weeks a certain comic, frankie boyle has seen fit to make the following jokes.
On the subject 'worst thing a newsreader could say', last week. 'Oh my god picked up wrong piece of paper, this is my doctor telling me I have HIV'
And this week, on subject 'worst ending for the new harry potter book', the 'joke' was 'harry always thought he would die at the hands of valdemor until his doctor told him he was HIV positive'.
Now, theres the part of me that is glad that people feel they can joke about this as if its 'normal' BUT both jokes reinforce negative stereotypes, ie, your'e going to die if you get it. Also, I'm sorry, since when has it been funny to laugh about the diagnosis of an incurable illness? OK, I do, but I've got it! It would be different if I knew this guy was poz..then I'd be saying how brave he is!
Theres a couple of websites you can post comments, and maybe see clip, though it wasnt up yet this AM.
I'm trying desperately to keep a sense of humour, but until I can talk freely in public about HIV without fear of reprisals/reaction,I find this REALLY offensive. (and yes i know, more its in the mainstream, more hopefully this WILL become acceptable)
What do you guys think?
I know i'm going to enjoy the party in the afterlife, but do you all mind that I'm going to be VERY late!!!

Offline Iggy

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2007, 06:54:33 PM »
I thought the first joke was kind of funny (if I'm visualizing it correctly) while the second one was just lame to me (resistant strain of TB would have been much funnier)

I get sensitive about HIV jokes sometimes and then sometimes I think they are hilarious depending on the delivery or context.  I'm personally not that upset about these two though

Offline BT65

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2007, 07:46:03 PM »
They don't upset me, but I've been living with this longer, and have no problem telling anyoneI have it.  So maybe that makes a difference.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline milker

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2007, 07:55:22 PM »
and have no problem telling anyoneI have it.
You have color tv ? :D

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Offline BT65

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2007, 07:56:04 PM »
Why yes, darling, all us starlettes do. ;)
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline Oceanbeach

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2007, 12:35:11 AM »
Hey Tigger,

I kind of got used to talking about my status publically, I do enjoy a good joke and I don't feel offended by the joke.  If I was in the studio during filming and felt it was directed at me, that would be a different story.  I worked in a nightclub, Birdland West for a couple of years.  It was a show club with two performances each night except Tuesday.  Tuesday was comedy night and working the first three rows of tables was hazardous to our self-esteem. 

A commedian uses their surroundings as part of the act and staff is open target.  Either Chris Rock or D.L. Hughly introduced me to the audience as the new waiter, recommended everyone order drinks from me and then cautioned, "But your drinks may taste like shit because new waiter Michael is a fag".  The joke brought the house down and I was reduced to nothing for what reason... The commedian pulls their surrounding into the act.  I did work there for a couple of years though.

On another night another waiter was called out to the stage to sing with Eddie Harris.  Jonnie was a singer and had toured with a band on a Bachman Turner Overdrive tour.  Jonnie was elated and got halfway to the stage when they said, "APRIL FOOL."  He would have loved to sing with Eddie Harris so he was momentarily reduced to nothing.  It's just being pulled into the act.

I remember telling you once that Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did but, she was wearing heels and in reverse.  As time goes by, you may become comfortable with your status and be talking about it in the corner cafe.  Have the best day

Offline Cliff

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2007, 03:23:07 AM »
At the moment I don't find HIV a laughing matter.  Maybe that will change in the future.  My bf's friend told a joke while we were all out.  "How do you turn a fruit into a vegetable?"  "Give it HIV." 

I didn't find it funny.

Offline Dragonette

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2007, 07:31:09 AM »
Not funny. I don't find it ofensive, b/c I didn't watch the show, esp. the second one. I watched it I would be ticked off, no doubt. As for Chris Rock, yuck. "Drinks taste like shit"?!. How did he even stay on stage after this, this is supposed to be an opening line? I think the laughing was because it was so "outrageous" to say that. Like "Yo mama my mama" on MTV, where 2 guys just shout lines like yo mama is so fat she can't wipe her own ass to each other, and their posse is like ooohhhh. Stupid, vulgar, not funny in the least. He should've had tomatoes thrown at him. 2 years?!
Offensive can be OK if it's at least funny. We have Chris Rock here on Comedy Central, that man is just NOT funny, he just shouts. Will Ferrel, Mad TV, Ben Stiller, Jim Carry, Will Smith, Vince Vaughn, Owen Wilson, the guys who made "Hot Fuzz", "Little Britain" - they're funny, and they are just some mainstream names off the top of my head. Chris Rock is just lame.

My BF has this British collegue who doesn't know I am poz, he always makes the oddest remarks. Such us:
BF: "I feel tired lately"
Brit: "You didn't spend time in San Francisco in the 80s did you?""

He also told us a story of a HIV+ Albanian immigrant in Britain caught fucking a sheep in broad daylight. I later bumped into the story, it's true except the guy was white British and HIV-.

I used to feel down about it, but now don't care anymore.
"If you keep one foot in yesterday, and one in tomorrow, you piss all over today". Betty Tacy

Dan J.

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2007, 01:59:02 PM »
Even after living with this virus for 21 years I still don't find anything about it funny.

Offline Bucko

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2007, 02:45:38 PM »
There is a world of difference between the black humor Matty or Benj (or I) might employ and these tasteless exercises in "humor". I find them unfunny and unnecessary.

(Who has a great sense of humor)
Blessed with brains, talent and gorgeous tits.

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Offline pozguy75

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2007, 03:17:01 PM »
Well I can see both sides to this...

Tigger's case is, valid. Why choose HIV over say, cancer, or heart disease, or hepatitis?? These are all deadly, so why not give Harry Potter cancer? The answer to that is cancer isn't funny...right? In the 80's Bob Hope quipped: "The Statue of Liberty has AIDS, not sure if she got it from the mouth of the Hudson or the Staten Island Faerie." The problem is HIV carries with it a stigma that many of us live with on a daily basis. Choosing this type of joke, only perpetuates the stigma of living with HIV. Those of you saying you don't take issue with it are also perpetuating the stigma...the statement made, is that it's okay to laugh at us, and not with us...there is a big difference. The other statement made is, that there is something wrong with us for contracting HIV. And unfortunately once again, this is a side handed slap to the face, that either we can choose to ignore and be silent giving power to this kind of rhetoric, or we can call them to task and ask why HIV is funnier than cancer...HIV does not make us less than...and this type of joke implies just that.

To the other point:

I know my mother used to tell me to ignore bullies...because for some reason, she thought if you ignored the bully he or she would leave you alone. And that same principle is at play here. We ignore it, don't give it any press, and you don't add fuel to the fire...We can be overly sensitive and be offended by such jokes or we can do as the bible teaches us, and "turn the other cheek". Because this puts us on the high road and not sink to the bully's level...

My opinion...is we need to start breaking down this veil of stigma and shame, not allow for these types of jokes. They are tasteless and droll and frankly rank up there with black jokes, Asian jokes, gay jokes...We have to ask ourselves whether or not we want fight off 27 years of prejudice...I for one, am willing take up the fight...

Just my two cents.

(Who believes discrimination and prejudice is wrong, no matter what form it takes.)
Dx 2005

Offline david25luvit

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2007, 10:39:22 AM »

                 Without addressing the jokes you mentioned I think humor allows us to see things from a different perspective.
There's nothing like a little levity to allow people to see things from a different point of view.  They say laughter is the best
medicine....and aside from those tasteless jokes that serve only to isolate specific people or groups of individuals...I have to agree!
I think its important not to take ourselves too seriously...personally I would rather laugh than cry.
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I miss him terribly..........

Offline Iggy

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Re: Jokes at our expense
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2007, 10:56:07 AM »
There is a world of difference between the black humor Matty or Benj (or I) might employ and these tasteless exercises in "humor".

I guess humor like beauty is in the eye of the beholder.   

What some see as black humor others don't.  Sometimes people label something as black humor as an excuse to attack or state an ignorance - neither of which is really acceptable - regardless of HIV status.


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