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Old 10-08-2019, 09:28 PM
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Polish People Satirized.


Why are Polish people often satirized as being dumb?

My mother was mostly Polish. And she could speak two languages. Plus she practically remodeled our whole house.

So why are they (seriously or half-seriously) portrayed as dumb?

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Old 10-08-2019, 10:38 PM
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It's not satire. It's racism.

You may as well ask why people call black or Irish people dumb. The point is to cast Polish people as a sub-human group that it is okay to discriminate against and treat poorly.
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Old 10-08-2019, 10:42 PM
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It's a joke, not satire.

Same reason people joke about (not satirize) blondes, or Texas Aggies. There are jokes that need butts, and there are all sorts of butts that can be used, often for the same joke.

Well okay, maybe they are satirizing the Aggies.

Last edited by Hilarity N. Suze; 10-08-2019 at 10:43 PM.
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Old 10-08-2019, 11:04 PM
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It's a joke, not satire.
I'm not sure what distinction you're trying to draw here. Many people do believe in racist stereotypes - stupid Polish/Irish/blacks, stingy Jews, etc. Given those beliefs, it's satire to exaggerate those traits in mockery and ridicule.

Last edited by Riemann; 10-08-2019 at 11:06 PM.
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Old 10-08-2019, 11:35 PM
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It's not satire. It's racism.

You may as well ask why people call black or Irish people dumb. The point is to cast Polish people as a sub-human group that it is okay to discriminate against and treat poorly.
Polish is a race now?
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Old 10-08-2019, 11:39 PM
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My WAG is that it was when there were a lot of Polish immigrants coming in who didn't speak much English and so were stigmatized as stupid. Like many immigrants who couldn't speak English, they tended to take menial jobs, at least at first, which was further evidence to those who wanted to think they were lesser people. I don't know why the Poles were picked out more than other eastern Europeans, like Russians for example, except maybe that there were more of them.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:07 AM
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Americas largest ethnic group are/were Germans and Germans make fun of Poles. It then diffused into the general population.
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:03 AM
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Americas largest ethnic group are/were Germans and Germans make fun of Poles. It then diffused into the general population.
I think that'd be it. Every country has a stereotypical "dumb neighbour" - the English make fun of the Irish, the French mock the Belgians and the Swiss, etc... the jokes are mostly the same, only the target changes.

(btw, my favourite one is "Why do Belgians always swim at the bottom of the swimming pool ? Because deep down, they're not all that dumb")
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:10 AM
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Polish is a race now?
"Beginning in the last years of the 19th century, anthropologists in the West accepted race theories, and many believed that the health of the human race depended upon the preservation of “racial purity.” The same applied to Germany. When this thinking even became a field of academic research, Nazi hatred of “the non-German races” found very fertile ground in which it could take root." (source)
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:23 AM
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Moved to IMHO.

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Old 10-09-2019, 01:36 AM
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Polish is a race now?
Only for the people who let Merriam-Webster decide what words mean.

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Originally Posted by The Dictionary
2a: a family, tribe, people, or nation belonging to the same stock
b: a class or kind of people unified by shared interests, habits, or characteristics
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/race

Or the Oxford English Dictionary:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Another Dictionary
1.2A group of people sharing the same culture, history, language, etc.; an ethnic group.
https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/race

If you're one of those types, then Polish is a race. Otherwise, I guess you get apply your own restrictions to what words mean.
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:58 AM
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My WAG is that it was when there were a lot of Polish immigrants coming in who didn't speak much English and so were stigmatized as stupid. Like many immigrants who couldn't speak English, they tended to take menial jobs, at least at first, which was further evidence to those who wanted to think they were lesser people. I don't know why the Poles were picked out more than other eastern Europeans, like Russians for example, except maybe that there were more of them.
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Americas largest ethnic group are/were Germans and Germans make fun of Poles. It then diffused into the general population.
I'd say it's a combination of these two things. German Americans (and eventually Italian Americans, Irish Americans, etc.) who had been in the U.S. longer than Polish immigrants, who were less familiar with the language and customs.

They're not really Polish jokes, so much as Polish immigrant jokes.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:45 AM
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Polish is a race now?
Yes, in the same way as Hispanic is. "Race" can refer to two different things, which back when the world was larger used to be much more parallel than they are now: ancestry and culture. You're thinking that it means "a certain set of physical traits"; that's linked to but not equal to the ancestry definition. So is referring to Americans of Polish descent as "Polish".
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Old 10-09-2019, 05:03 AM
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Americas largest ethnic group are/were Germans and Germans make fun of Poles. It then diffused into the general population.
I certainly get the picture that Germans tend to make fun of Poles -- analogous, in the department of "regrettable but sometimes humorous national stereotypes" to the English vis-a-vis the Irish: that is, the fun-makers' perceivedly less-bright and less-organised neighbour nation. Have also seen it suggested that in the US, the "dumb Poles" thing arose in part, via Polish-Jewish immigrants to the States. With, sadly, many centuries of "Polish (i.e. Slavic) Poles" and their Jewish neighbours, not getting on well together -- Polish Jews were apt to console themselves by regarding their majority non-Jewish compatriots as not very clever; and to think up comical tales on that theme. It would seem fair to say that the Jewish community there as a whole, would have been more into "the life of the mind" than most of their Gentile neighbours.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:03 AM
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I'd say it's a combination of these two things. German Americans (and eventually Italian Americans, Irish Americans, etc.) who had been in the U.S. longer than Polish immigrants, who were less familiar with the language and customs.

They're not really Polish jokes, so much as Polish immigrant jokes.
That's the way I'd heard it too. The "new wave" of immigration always caught crap, and then gave it to the "next wave."

I wish I could recall where I heard it, as a reference, something makes me think its some Issac Asimov non-fiction?

At any rate, the Scots-Irish caught it when they first started arriving in pre-Revoultionary times. Ironically, when Swedish and Nordics arrived afterward, they didn't face much stigma. But those "others" -- from the Mediterranean areas of Europe, what with their garlic and tomato eating olive oil using ways, those people were awful. But people just told the same jokes, they didn't even update the jokes for ethnicity.

The question is, why are we sticking with Polish jokes after all the newer waves of immigration. Maybe its because of the ease of publication -- now we write durable joke books, instead of yellow paper rags, so the joke can't be transferred. Or that the "Border Wall" talk has made the new wave of immigration "serious business."

The stereotypes in the Godfather or other mafioso movies doesn't bother me, but it does bother some members of my family. For me, I get kinda pissed off when I watch episodes of Two Broke Girls -- with the characters of Oleg and Sophie. Now, the actors hit the accents perfectly, and that makes their situations they depict all the more egregious -- aren't we past making fun of Europeans? Note: these examples don't depict the foreigner as stupid, they just have other negative traits. So I guess we are past that.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:19 AM
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Polish is a race now?
This question seems to come up often. I wonder why. Is it that some people are comfortable with being identified as bigots so long as they can argue that “technically, I’m not a racist, because the group I’m bigoted against isn’t a race, according to my narrow definition of the word.”
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:53 AM
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This question seems to come up often. I wonder why. Is it that some people are comfortable with being identified as bigots so long as they can argue that “technically, I’m not a racist, because the group I’m bigoted against isn’t a race, according to my narrow definition of the word.”
That's my take on it.

I haven't heard derogatory comments about Polish people in a long time, in the 70s it was common how openly bigoted people would be about the Polish. Polish jokes were a thing and it was pretty socially accepted. It's just bigotry and you can't make much sense out of the why of it, some people want to feel better about themselves by crapping on other people.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:18 AM
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I'm not sure what distinction you're trying to draw here. Many people do believe in racist stereotypes - stupid Polish/Irish/blacks, stingy Jews, etc. Given those beliefs, it's satire to exaggerate those traits in mockery and ridicule.
I, too, thought "satirize" was the wrong word for what the OP was referring to. In my experience, Polish jokes aren't meant to point out how dumb Polish people are; they just take that as a premise for the sake of the joke.

But then, I don't think I've heard any Polish jokes since the 1970s.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:21 AM
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This question seems to come up often. I wonder why. Is it that some people are comfortable with being identified as bigots so long as they can argue that “technically, I’m not a racist, because the group I’m bigoted against isn’t a race, according to my narrow definition of the word.”
Good point, which would explain the popularity of West Virginia jokes, since West Virginian definitely isn't a race.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:33 AM
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My dad was born in Chicago in 1920. I was born in Chicago in 1960. Our last name ends in "ski," but we had no recent immigrants in our tree.

Growing up, I heard and told a million Polack jokes. Shared them with my dad. He said that when he as young, the same jokes were told about Bohemians.

Q: You know why so many Bohunks survived the Stock Market Crash?
A: You can't kill yourself jumping out of a basement window!

(Oh yeah - the stereotype immigrant would buy a 2 flat, rent out the top 2 floors and live in the basement.)
Haw haw! I got a MILLION of 'em!
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:10 AM
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The top ten nation of origin of people's ancestors in the U.S. today are these:

1. Germany
2. Mexico
3. Ireland
4. England
5. Italy
6. France
7. Poland
8. Scotland
9. Puerto Rico
10. Norway

(If all of the African continent were considered as a single nation of origin, it would rank second between Germany and Mexico.)

You couldn't make jokes about the Germans, Irish, English, French, Scottish, or Norwegians because together they were more than half of Americans, and you didn't want your snide jokes to be about the people you're talking to. You also probably thought that they looked too much like you, so you couldn't be sure you weren't talking to them. At that point (say, in the 1940's, 1950's, and 1960's), people of Mexican or Puerto Rican ancestry were a little less common and more confined to certain parts of the U.S. and certain neighborhoods elsewhere. You didn't want to make nasty jokes about blacks because that came across as too obviously racist. They didn't live in your neighborhood, but they lived in the next neighborhood. Italians had just become mainstream at that point, so using them in insults was a little dicey.

So if you were a white person living in a suburb of a northern U.S. city in the 1940's, 1950's, and 1960's, Polish people were the simplest targets. They were at most a small group in the area you lived. That meant that you could deliberately hurt people by your mean jokes, but it was unlikely that there were enough around to immediately beat you up for those stupid insults.
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:24 AM
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It's a joke, not satire.

Same reason people joke about (not satirize) blondes, or Texas Aggies. There are jokes that need butts, and there are all sorts of butts that can be used, often for the same joke.

Well okay, maybe they are satirizing the Aggies.
Hey now!

Seriously... most Aggie jokes are just warmed-over derogatory jokes from a variety of races, ethnic groups or what-have-you. I've even heard dumb blonde jokes reworked a little as Aggie jokes.

In a lot of ways, the "meta" joke with them is that while Texas A&M may have been a backwater military school full of dumb-ass hicks back in the day, the modern institution is highly regarded in many academic fields, mostly agriculture, engineering or science related, and is not at all a backwater of dumb-ass hicks anymore.
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:34 AM
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The 'stupid Poles' trope got even more traction when stories began to circulate of Polish cavalry charging German tanks. The spin was, "see, look how stupid they are".

If they had been, say, Norwegian, they'd have been hailed as Viking warriors charging to Valhalla.


ETA: I (now) see it as supreme heroism.

Last edited by KarlGauss; 10-09-2019 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:38 AM
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My personal feeling about why the Polish were portrayed as stupid is that Polish isn't a Romance language* or Germanic, so, although people who spoke German, French, Italian, or Portuguese couldn't speak English, anyone who knew a little German or a Romance language (even Latin) could get an idea of what they were saying, and make themselves somewhat understood. But Polish wasn't in the same family, and the language barrier was that much higher. The Polish immigrants couldn't pick up on what you were saying, so they must have been dumb.

My grandparents lived in the US most of their lives, but kept mostly to their own enclaves, and never really learned colloquial English, because they didn't have to. To their dying days they had only a passing familiarity with the language of the country they lived in.

Add to this the fact that most of the Polish immigrants were peasants, with no higher education or high technical skills. My maternal grandmother got a job washing floors at the old Waldorf-Astoria in Manhattan, because it was a job an unskilled laborer could do. One day they gave her undiluted ammonia to use to clean the floor, and she plunged in her hands and scalded her skin. She couldn't put her hands in water until they healed. The people at the hotel must have thought her extraordinarily stupid. But I doubt if she';d ever seen or even heard of ammonia before. She ended up getting a job sewing clothes in a little nowhere town in New Jersey (she had no skill at sewing -- she had to pick it up quickly), which is where she met my grandfather.



*But there is a surprising amount of latin in the Polish language -- something I realized when studying both languages. It's just not as obvious.
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Old 10-09-2019, 10:07 AM
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My dad was born in Chicago in 1920. I was born in Chicago in 1960. Our last name ends in "ski," but we had no recent immigrants in our tree.

Growing up, I heard and told a million Polack jokes. Shared them with my dad. He said that when he as young, the same jokes were told about Bohemians.

Q: You know why so many Bohunks survived the Stock Market Crash?
A: You can't kill yourself jumping out of a basement window!

(Oh yeah - the stereotype immigrant would buy a 2 flat, rent out the top 2 floors and live in the basement.)
Haw haw! I got a MILLION of 'em!
I thought it was amusing when my first wife and I went to visit her Polish heritage family in northern Minnesota, and heard them telling Finlander jokes, which were pretty much identical to Polish jokes.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:05 AM
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The 'stupid Poles' trope got even more traction when stories began to circulate of Polish cavalry charging German tanks. The spin was, "see, look how stupid they are".

If they had been, say, Norwegian, they'd have been hailed as Viking warriors charging to Valhalla.


ETA: I (now) see it as supreme heroism.
What makes it even more frustrating is that it’s not true, but based on Nazi propaganda.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charge_at_Krojanty
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:06 AM
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...when Swedish and Nordics arrived afterward, they didn't face much stigma.
But at least they eventually got made fun of with Sven and Ole jokes.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:13 AM
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I think that'd be it. Every country has a stereotypical "dumb neighbour" - the English make fun of the Irish, the French mock the Belgians and the Swiss, etc... the jokes are mostly the same, only the target changes.

(btw, my favourite one is "Why do Belgians always swim at the bottom of the swimming pool ? Because deep down, they're not all that dumb")
In northeastern Wisconsin, when I was growing up in the 1970s, it was probably a 50/50 mix between Polish jokes and Belgian jokes, as the area had traditionally had a lot of Belgian immigrants.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:30 AM
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The top ten nation of origin of people's ancestors in the U.S. today are these:

1. Germany
2. Mexico
3. Ireland
4. England
5. Italy
6. France
7. Poland
8. Scotland
9. Puerto Rico
10. Norway

(If all of the African continent were considered as a single nation of origin, it would rank second between Germany and Mexico.)

You couldn't make jokes about the Germans, Irish, English, French, Scottish, or Norwegians because together they were more than half of Americans, and you didn't want your snide jokes to be about the people you're talking to. You also probably thought that they looked too much like you, so you couldn't be sure you weren't talking to them. At that point (say, in the 1940's, 1950's, and 1960's), people of Mexican or Puerto Rican ancestry were a little less common and more confined to certain parts of the U.S. and certain neighborhoods elsewhere. You didn't want to make nasty jokes about blacks because that came across as too obviously racist. They didn't live in your neighborhood, but they lived in the next neighborhood. Italians had just become mainstream at that point, so using them in insults was a little dicey.

So if you were a white person living in a suburb of a northern U.S. city in the 1940's, 1950's, and 1960's, Polish people were the simplest targets. They were at most a small group in the area you lived. That meant that you could deliberately hurt people by your mean jokes, but it was unlikely that there were enough around to immediately beat you up for those stupid insults.
I don't buy this.

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You couldn't make jokes about the Germans, Irish, English, French, Scottish, or Norwegians because together they were more than half of Americans
This lot aren't a block - in fact they all either hate or take pot shots at each other. Note the English and Irish. More likely, it comes from Germany - Poles have been the butt of various German tribes for centuries.
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Old 10-09-2019, 11:31 AM
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Someone from the Netherlands told me they make fun of Belgians using the same kind of jokes directed at other nationalities. He had developed a lot of language expertise in ESL classes he had to take despite his fluency in English. Besides learning curse words in many languages (something he found useful while playing soccer) he also found that every country makes fun of some other one, usually a neighboring country. And even within countries this exists, like Aggie jokes, and in Brazil where those from the state of Minas Gerais are ridiculed as stupid hicks in Rio.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:39 PM
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And even within countries this exists, like Aggie jokes, and in Brazil where those from the state of Minas Gerais are ridiculed as stupid hicks in Rio.
My Brazilian teacher told us that they're referred to as "flatheads". When I was in Guatemala, I was surprised by the animosity towards the residents of the surrounding countries, usually categorized as stupid, lazy, etc.
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Old 10-09-2019, 12:53 PM
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Oh, the white folks hate the black folks,
And the black folks hate the white folks.
The Hindus hate the Moslems,
And EVERYONE hates the Jews...

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Old 10-09-2019, 01:12 PM
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Why are Polish people often satirized as being dumb?

My mother was mostly Polish. And she could speak two languages. Plus she practically remodeled our whole house.

So why are they (seriously or half-seriously) portrayed as dumb?

I don't think "my mother spoke two languages and was good at manual labor" is a particularly good rebuttal to Polish stereotypes.
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:17 PM
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....and in Michigan there are Yooper jokes (U.P. - Upper Peninsula), and in Nawlins' there are Boudreaux & Thibodeaux jokes (Cajun)....

Any group is going to find some group to pick on as dumber, be it race, nationality, income level, urban/rural, etc.

I imagine when the aliens finally land they'll have a whole bunch of "dumb earthling" jokes. (Anyone is welcome to steal this idea and make a quick buck with a book. You have my permission.)
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:23 PM
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Having grown up with Polish jokes (more correctly, "Polack jokes"), I found it interesting that the election of Pope John Paul II (aka the Polish Pope) pretty much ended the jokes, which were pretty much on their way out anyway.
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Old 10-09-2019, 01:29 PM
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My personal feeling about why the Polish were portrayed as stupid is that Polish isn't a Romance language* or Germanic, so, although people who spoke German, French, Italian, or Portuguese couldn't speak English, anyone who knew a little German or a Romance language (even Latin) could get an idea of what they were saying, and make themselves somewhat understood. But Polish wasn't in the same family, and the language barrier was that much higher. The Polish immigrants couldn't pick up on what you were saying, so they must have been dumb.
We don't have these same jokes about Greeks though. In fact I don't think I've ever heard ANY jokes about Greeks.
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Old 10-09-2019, 02:04 PM
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This is just my impression, based on reading John Dos Passos’ U.S.A. trilogy, but it sounded like, in the minds of established Americans, “Polack”
was a catchall category for any Central European immigrant - Czechs, Slovaks, Hungarians, and of course Poles.

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We don't have these same jokes about Greeks though. In fact I don't think I've ever heard ANY jokes about Greeks.
Really? I can think of two, right off the top of my head:

Nick and Spiros are arguing: “You’re a moron with a tiny dick!” “Yeah? Well, you can shove it up your ass!” “Oh, so now you want to kiss and make up!”

There’s also the joke about how loyal a Greek soldier is; he’ll never leave his buddy’s behind.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:12 PM
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Back in the 1970's, comedian Larry Wilde made a career out of books with ethnic jokes. I thought the first one was funny (I was 10, so it was probably the polish joke one), the 2nd one was 50% recycled from the first one, the third book about 80% recycled material, and I assume the pattern continued as they approached 100%.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:23 PM
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That's the way I'd heard it too. The "new wave" of immigration always caught crap, and then gave it to the "next wave."
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Ironically, when Swedish and Nordics arrived afterward, they didn't face much stigma.
They did, but it was early in the 19th Century, so nobody remembers. Then the Potato Famine enabled the Scandinavians to dish it out to the newcomers from Ireland.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:39 PM
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In some northern areas they have "Sven and Oly" jokes which are jokes about Scandanavians.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:45 PM
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Having grown up with Polish jokes (more correctly, "Polack jokes"), I found it interesting that the election of Pope John Paul II (aka the Polish Pope) pretty much ended the jokes, which were pretty much on their way out anyway.
There was even a Polish joke going around here for quite sometime after he became pope (I think I didn't hear it until the early 90s) -- Basically, the set up is some soul gets to heaven, meets St. Peter at the gate, and says "What the hell are you guys doing around here? Are you not paying attention! They just elected a Polish pope down there!" And the joke goes on, with the message being frantically relayed from one saint to another, scrambling to figure out how this mix-up could have happened, when finally the message gets to God who says "Ja wiem" ("I know" in Polish.) Best told shaggy-dog style.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:47 PM
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As for the Polish jokes, I grew up with them, my dad telling me the most of them (he and my mom were both born in Poland.) As I like to say, "I wonder who that one dumb Pole was who ruined it for the rest of us!" But, seriously, as it's always been explained to me, many of them came here to work in the stockyards and did manual labor, didn't speak English at all or not very well, and thus were just kind of seen as "strong, but stupid."
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:59 PM
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It's not satire. It's racism.

You may as well ask why people call black or Irish people dumb. The point is to cast Polish people as a sub-human group that it is okay to discriminate against and treat poorly.
No; Irish people were bad-tempered drunks and I think blacks were lazy; not dumb. Dumb was pretty much just the Polish.


And it was more just simple prejudice same as we have today. If you don't remember it check this old Bill Cosby school film. It doesn't make it nice but for most people there wasn't really any evil intent.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FV8Rg_U_Fec
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:02 PM
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Having grown up with Polish jokes (more correctly, "Polack jokes"), I found it interesting that the election of Pope John Paul II (aka the Polish Pope) pretty much ended the jokes, which were pretty much on their way out anyway.
Not quite. I was told a "good" one that actually involved the Pope John Paul II. I resist posting it though.
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:15 PM
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but for most people there wasn't really any evil intent.
That's the nice thing about structural, implicit racism though, right? You can help perpetuate systematic oppression and bigotry without having to go to the trouble of generating explicit evil intent on your own behalf
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Old 10-09-2019, 04:31 PM
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I think that'd be it. Every country has a stereotypical "dumb neighbour" - the English make fun of the Irish, the French mock the Belgians and the Swiss, etc... the jokes are mostly the same, only the target changes.



(btw, my favourite one is "Why do Belgians always swim at the bottom of the swimming pool ? Because deep down, they're not all that dumb")


As a Belgian-American, I approve that joke.
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Old 10-09-2019, 06:31 PM
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That's the nice thing about structural, implicit racism though, right? You can help perpetuate systematic oppression and bigotry without having to go to the trouble of generating explicit evil intent on your own behalf
It actually makes it easier to be a bigot, than not. Just go with the flow, make fun of Poles and if you don’t, you’re a stick in the mud.
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Old 10-09-2019, 07:48 PM
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We don't have these same jokes about Greeks though. In fact I don't think I've ever heard ANY jokes about Greeks.
I'm guessing you're not of Greek extraction? And probably under 50? Growing up, I heard a lot of Greek jokes, which implied homosexuality, presumably based on the sexual culture of ancient Greece. Now that you mention it, I've never thought about why those died out.

More polite Greek jokes focused on how many of us owned restaurants ("You're not Greek if you've never owned a restaurant") which was a valid stereotype of the day not unlike Apu on the Simpsons.

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Originally Posted by BrotherCadfael View Post
Having grown up with Polish jokes (more correctly, "Polack jokes"), I found it interesting that the election of Pope John Paul II (aka the Polish Pope) pretty much ended the jokes, which were pretty much on their way out anyway.
But his papacy fathered (heh heh) the greatest one ever:

Q: What do you call a Polish guy with a $600 hat?
A: Your Holiness.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:12 PM
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I'm guessing you're not of Greek extraction? And probably under 50? Growing up, I heard a lot of Greek jokes, which implied homosexuality, presumably based on the sexual culture of ancient Greece. Now that you mention it, I've never thought about why those died out.
1/4 Greek, 33 years old. Yes, I've heard general wisecracks to the effect of that Greek men like to do each other in the ass. Never heard an actual "setup - punchline" format joke, the way all the Polish jokes are.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:19 PM
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1/4 Greek, 33 years old. Yes, I've heard general wisecracks to the effect of that Greek men like to do each other in the ass. Never heard an actual "setup - punchline" format joke, the way all the Polish jokes are.
Google "Greek jokes" and you'll find a few.

My memory's not what it used to be, but I recall:

Q: What's a Greek 10?
A: The back of a 2.
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