Apparently it's okay for MSNBC panels to sit around and tell race jokes on-air. Host Melissa Harris-Perry had her panel guests tell their "favorite race joke" or "best punch line" on race on her Sunday show and laughter ranged between nervous and uproarious. Harris-Perry capped it all off with a Jewish joke.
After discussing if the best way to give a "social critique" on race was through humor, Harris-Perry told her panel, "Okay, so give me your favorite race joke or your best punch line on it." If a Fox News panel sat around and told race jokes on the set, there would be an uproar and accusations of racism would be directed at the network. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
The liberal panelists of MSNBC's The Cycle did their level best to help University of Pennsylvania religion professor Anthea Butler defend her now infamous tweet that the filmmaker behind the "Innocence of Muslims" video trailer on YouTube should be throw in jail. Co-host Toure Neblett went so far as to denounce the Twitter "mob" that deluged Butler's Twitter account with critical tweets. Only conservative S.E. Cupp pushed back against Butler by insisting that the YouTube video was a fig leaf justification by Islamists for violence.
"We think of this [free speech] as like an absolute right, but in fact there are limits.... So in this global world where a video clip can get spread around like wildfire, is it in fact going too far, is that beyond our constitutionally-guaranteed freedom of speech?" co-host Krystal Ball asked Butler. [MP3 audio here]