Ethnic Jokes

Ethnic Jokes:

  • “Why do they put cotton balls under medicine caps?”

“To remind n*ggers they picked cotton before they sold drugs.”

  • “What do you call two dozen n*ggers working in a cotton field under the blazing sun?”

“Old-fashioned farming equipment!”

My friend told me these racist cotton jokes that she had heard from other friends or saw on TV.  She said that jokes like these are really common among youth, probably around the ages from 16-25, or any age older depending on how racist the person is/how much of a sense of humor they have.  She said that there is an endless amount of racist jokes, specifically jokes about African-Americans, that are exchanged all the time for amusement.

These jokes in particular deal with the reputation of African Americans having been brought to America to work as slaves on plantations.  Most often, the plantation owners were trying to grow cotton, which is why cotton is so often one of the topics referenced in these types of jokes.  In joking about cotton, one is making a direct reference to their past occupation.

By linking it with today’s items, such as medicine and farming equipment, one is carrying the racism from hundreds of years ago to present day.  In referring to farming equipment, one is saying that they are essentially worth nothing more than to work in the fields, as they did back during the time of slavery.  Also, by referring to medicine as drugs, one is equating the racism employed by plantation owners to the racism employed by people today who associate drug dealing with particular racial stereotypes.

These jokes are made even more crude and offensive by including the term “n*gger.”  This is a derogatory way of saying “African-American” or “black” and makes other races seem superior.  Though people often tell these jokes solely for humor, they still represent the roots of racism.  By referring to this race in this particular way, the storyteller is inadvertently promoting his/her race or occupation instead, and therefore feels better about himself.  However what some people may not realize when telling these jokes, even if it is only out of humorous intent, is that slavery and racism still exist in parts of the world today, and people still take offense to this type of language.