Sometimes satire's as subtle as a thu...

Sometimes satire's as subtle as a thunderstorm

There are 12 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Aug 16, 2008, titled Sometimes satire's as subtle as a thunderstorm. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

T he movie " Tropic Thunder " spreads insult and caricature like napalm across our social sensibilities.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Chicago Tribune.

tried and true American

Chicago, IL

#1 Aug 16, 2008
Hear hear Mr. Greising,

I like to tell my friends and enemies that I don't consider a day well spent unless I offend at least one person. I'm not tactless, and I avoid obvious cliches and beating up on the completely defenseless. But pushing the bounds of good taste is a well worn occupation, and I enjoy it greatly. To those who would take offense, thank you.
Joe A

Chicago, IL

#2 Aug 16, 2008
It's fine for them to picket and boycott the movie and it's fine to go see it. The pickets have raised awareness. When "Cruisin" came out many years ago, I was glad to see my gay bretheren making noise about it. They made people aware that this was not representative of gays. Despite my being gay, I did eventually see the movie.

Orlando, FL

#3 Aug 16, 2008
If Hollywood was boycotting the movie it would make a whole lot more sense. In the context of the film it is impossible to not realize that the joke is on the Hollywood establishment and no one else. This is just absurd. The bits by Richard Pryor and Gene Wilder would never be allowed to be shown today,even though they spoke greater truths than any protest or journalist could. It's just sad really.

Cary, IL

#4 Aug 17, 2008
Hollywood is a bubble town.

Look at old movies. Even Cary Grant uttered the words: "That's mighty white of you".
Kevin K

Tonawanda, NY

#6 Aug 17, 2008
Funny or Foul? Tagline for 'Tropic Thunder': "Once there was a retard" [VOTE]-

United States

#7 Aug 17, 2008
Excellent column
Maggie in LA

Frazier Park, CA

#8 Aug 17, 2008
If you don't think Les Grossman is based on truth, you never worked in Hollywood.

Since: Aug 08

Bolingbrook, IL

#9 Aug 17, 2008
Really great column!

A thought for the day:

"A joke is a very serious thing." --Winston Churchill

But with controversy comes great debate, and with it, a greater understanding.

We should all be so proud of our children with differences as you are!!!!!

United States

#10 Aug 17, 2008
Dude, think you're WAY over-analyzing this movie.
Also, the lecture on satire - please!
Perhaps you should look up words like:
oh, and finally, BORING.

And the fact that you had do dig back to the "early 1700's" to find an example of satire? Pathetic

Danville, IL

#11 Aug 18, 2008
bob wrote:
Dude, think you're WAY over-analyzing this movie.
Also, the lecture on satire - please!
Perhaps you should look up words like:
oh, and finally, BORING.
And the fact that you had do dig back to the "early 1700's" to find an example of satire? Pathetic
Umm, Bob, "A Modest Proposal" is sort of the paradigm of satire in English lit, kind of like "Romeo and Juliet" for a teenage love tragedy. Let me guess -- you're not an English major?

United States

#12 Aug 18, 2008
BORING commentary on a pretty funny movie. Don't be so damn sensitive...It'll make life more fun for you.
Anne Eason


#13 Aug 22, 2008
Why we are boycotting Tropic Thunder

Q. What is offensive in the "Tropic Thunder" movie?

A. "Tropic Thunder" repeatedly uses the R-word and portrays people with intellectual disabilities in a derogatory and demeaning way. Specifically, one of the film’s characters, Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller) plays a role as a farm boy with a mental impairment in a movie trailer called “Simple Jack….Once upon a time there was a Retard.” Throughout the movie "Tropic Thunder" this character is played for laughs in a poor attempt at humor.

Q. What do you want the movie studios to do to make amends?

A. We want DreamWorks and Paramount to step up and help us eradicate this word from all forms of American popular culture. In addition, we want all the major entertainment heads to come together to address this issue and no longer use the R-word in film, television, music or any form of entertainment.

Q. Did DreamWorks seek counsel from disability groups when making that scene in the film?

A. DreamWorks did not seek input or counsel when creating the "Simple Jack" scene of the film. Studios will often seek counsel on sensitive topics from focus groups. It was clear that the producers did not see an issue with the demeaning content of this scene.

Q. Are you calling for a boycott of the "Tropic Thunder" movie?

A. We are calling the public to take action and let the Hollywood community know, especially DreamWorks and Paramount, that this type of language is defamatory and hateful, perpetuating negative stereotypes and the dehumanizing and devaluing of people with intellectual disabilities. Hollywood must take responsibility and accept a role in helping to eradicate this word from our language – NOT promote its use.

Q. Some people will argue that retard is a word that can be found in the dictionary and there is freedom of speech issue at stake. What do you say to them?

A. It is not the word that we object to. It is the use of the word in today’s culture in a demeaning and negative way. As to free speech, we have successfully over the years been able to make it socially and politically incorrect to use other forms of hate speech. It is time to make the pejorative use of the R-word equally unacceptable.

Q. What should concerned citizens who disapprove of this type of hateful language do?

A. Concerned Americans should go to and become part of a community to promote inclusion and acceptance of people with intellectual disabilities by eliminating the pejorative use of the R-word.

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Ben Stiller Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
News Herkimer Battle Jitney - what and where is it? (Jan '08) Feb '16 orzel-w 14
News See Penelope Cruz and Justin Bieber in the late... (Dec '15) Dec '15 Biebed Out 1
News Anne Meara dead at 85: Actress shone in comedie... (May '15) May '15 Marvin 1
Ben Stiller Naked (Apr '15) Apr '15 Ayersq 1
News Comedian Andy Dick arrested in alleged grand theft (Nov '14) Nov '14 Xstain Spot Remover 1
Ben Stiller NAKED: Full Frontal NUDE Videos and... (Nov '12) Sep '14 Scott Denny 3
News Son Said to 'Mistreat' Rooney (Dec '06) Jun '14 teresita wilson 34
More from around the web