Green Room

It Might Not Be the Best Idea for David Letterman to Joke About Underage Girls Being Raped

posted at 5:01 pm on June 9, 2009 by

Look out, Guy Cimbalo. There’s a new thuglike misogynist creep in town:

Before I continue, I’ll pause for a moment so you can catch your breath and ease that stitch in your side.


Okay. Most of the attention is going toward Letterman’s “slutty flight attendant” crack, but this one is actually worse.

At first I thought “her daughter” referred to Bristol. Which would be a pretty crappy joke to make about somebody’s kid, no matter how much you disagree with the parents’ politics (or mere existence, apparently). But it’d still be fair game. After all, Bristol did what she did. That’s not to say she should be happy about over-the-hill comedians getting cheap laughs from her mistakes, but hey, that’s comedy.

The thing is, that joke isn’t about Bristol: Palin brought her 14-year-old daughter Willow to the Yankees game with her.

That’s right: A state governor went to a baseball game with her underage daughter, and a national talk show host made a joke about the girl being sexually assaulted by one of the players.

I realize I’m just an inbred backwoods moron who can’t abide by any criticism of Sarah Palin whatsoever, but is this really the precedent we want to set for our politicians and their families?

After all, Samson Obama, one of the president’s many half-brothers, isn’t allowed in the UK because he tried to assault a 13-year-old girl. Are we to impose the Letterman standard there? Is it okay to make a joke like this?

“How come the First Family never invites Uncle Samson to visit? Because whenever Sasha and Malia sit on his knee, it takes six Secret Service guys to pry them off!”

Or how about this?

“Joe Biden keeps saying he’s not really sure where all that stimulus money is going. In other news, Ashley Biden’s coke dealer just bought Luxembourg.”

Hey, I didn’t say they were good jokes. But are they really worse than what Letterman just got away with on national TV? If so, why?

P.S. If you’re still not quivering with rage at my effrontery, Ace should make you mad.

P.P.S. The NYT posted a transcript of Letterman’s monologue, but one of the jokes was left out. Can you guess which one?

P.P.P.S. As a special treat for Roy Edroso and friends: Lettermanku!

P.P.P.P.S. Letterman doubles down.

(Crossposted to

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