By: Makdes Hailu, Student
We live in an age where people are tired of being politically correct.
Political correctness is seen as a burden– something that we have to constantly keep in mind so we won’t be shamed by marginalized communities.
This growing feeling of resentment has presented itself to us in many forms: from Donald Trump’s candidness to Amy Schumer’s jokes.
Yes. Amy Schumer’s jokes.
Every time someone mentions proudly that Amy Schumer is a Towson alum, I can’t help but cringe at the simple fact that one of the most irritatingly racist mainstream comedians gained a liberal arts education at the same place I attend.
At first glance, Amy Schumer might seem like a quirky, outspoken feminist who has pushed her way into a male-dominated industry.
She went from performing at Gotham Comedy Club to hosting the MTV Movie awards and starring in her self-written movie Trainwrecked, which proved to be a box office hit.
Towson should be proud that such an established, successful women went to our university.
Except for the fact that she “loves joking about race. Its [her] favorite.”
Amy Schumer is notorious for making African American and Hispanic people the butt of quite a few jokes.
On stage, she once joked that she wouldn’t do a racist impression of her only black friend she names “Timembe or whatever”, then proceeds to make a racist impression anyway.
Schumer pretends to double dutch on stage while yelling “girrrrrrrll” in a stereotypical manner and later tells her friend to “stop yelling! We’re not at the movies!”
Frankly, after watching that skit, my mouth did not crack an inch of a smile.
But that’s not all– she’s made a joke ensuing that Hispanic men are rapists, Mexicans work all the time, and as a white women in in today’s age, she understands racism because she watched Jungle Fever.
She even used her platform at the MTV Movie Awards to joke that Latina women are crazy when you cheat on them– soon after, MTV conveniently points the camera at Jennifer Lopez, who looks utterly baffled and taken aback by the joke.
Many people have and will argue that Schumer’s intentions are not racist– that it’s satirical in some way and she’s just playing dumb for laughs.
But what if I told you that her intentions don’t matter?
What if I told you that she doesn’t need actually mean harm in order to cause harm?
Amy Schumer shouldn’t tell these jokes because she has no right to say these things and excuse them as jokes.
African Americans and Hispanics don’t have the liberty to laugh at such stereotypes– these same jokes that Amy Schumer and her predominantly white fanbase laugh over are what the media and other outlets use to oppress minorities today.
In simpler terms: white people laugh, minorities don’t.
Let me tell you something that might sound crazy: political correctness isn’t actually bad.
It’s a way for us to get our messages across in an inclusive, non-offensive way.
If you find yourself constantly struggling with political correctness, then political correctness is not the problem.
The problem is the fact that you have prejudices that you constantly have to hide so you don’t get labeled as a “racist”.
My mind goes back to the Jim Crow Era, where white people would laugh at over exaggerated caricatures of black people who were played by whites in blackface.
I see little difference between this and Schumer yelling “girrrrrrrll” to her predominantly white audience.
It makes me sick to know that Amy Schumer will be performing at Towson for our 150th anniversary and I wouldn’t pay a penny to see it.