Twitter enraged at Stephen Colbert's supposedly racist tweet

Apparently channeling an “ignorant” character that he sometimes plays on his TV show, comedian Stephen Colbert tweeted on Thursday, “I am willing to show #Asian community I care by introducing the Ching-Chong Ding-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever.” Since then, racial outrage has ensued and the hashtag #CancelColbert has been trending nationally on Twitter. However, in this instance, some context is important. 

A tweet from The Colbert Report account earlier today has people on Twitter embroiled in an argument over satire and racism. The Twitter account for the satirically conservative Comedy Central show published a strikingly unsatirical, and some say straight-up racist, tweet Thursday afternoon. The tweet, a tie-in to a segment on Wednesday night’s show, was intended to be biting commentary about the hypocrisy of Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder, who responded to criticism of his team’s name by creating a foundation to help provide more opportunities for “Original Americans.” Unfortunately, 140 characters leaves little room for that kind of context. Without being paired against the Redskins situation, the tweet alone appears to be in shockingly bad taste.

 

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