Again? Tracy Morgan under fire for 'retarded' jokes


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Tracy Morgan has landed in hot water yet again, this time for a stand-up show during which he mocked “retarded” kids and “cripples.”

Performing at a New York comedy club on Saturday, Morgan told his audience not to “mess with women who have retarded kids” because “them young retarded males is strong … they’re strong like chimps.” Morgan also talked about hooking up with a “cripple” with a prosthetic arm. The crowd reportedly responded with groans and “uh-oh.”

The Arc, an advocacy group for people with disabilities, is calling on Morgan to apologize. “Tracy Morgan should apologize immediately,” The Arc CEO Peter Berns told EW in a statement. “This quote is far too offensive to be excused as comedy, and it is very hurtful to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.”

Berns added: “Mr. Morgan has an incredibly powerful platform from which to fix this, and if he’s learned anything in the last few weeks, he can’t bomb this apology.”

The dust-up hit just as the media firestorm surrounding the 30 Rock star’s anti-gay routine earlier this month in Nashville had started to die down. It should be pointed out that jokes like Morgan’s latest are not hugely unusual on the stand-up comedy circuit, and one wonders if this routine mocking people with disabilities would have made headlines if not for the media keeping such a close eye on Morgan following his previous controversy. In fact, Morgan’s been hitting this territory for awhile — a New York Post review of his show back in November said he mocked “cripples” and dubbed that section of his show “flat-out hilarious.” (NSFW video of a previous show below.)

On the other hand, going back into comedy clubs and telling offensive jokes so soon after digging himself out of the anti-gay blow-up probably wasn’t the smartest course of action either.

NBC’s top entertainment executive and Rock star and executive producer Tina Fey both issued statements expressing disappointment at Morgan over his anti-gay rant (which included him saying “I would stab my son if he acted gay”). Morgan’s apology tour included meeting with gay teens, making peace with GLAAD, and revisiting Nashville.

NBC had no comment on Morgan’s latest headlines and below a video from Morgan’s stand-up mocking people with disabilities. The language is VERY NSFW:

Read more:
Tracy Morgan returns to the stage post-controversy
Tina Fey and NBC chief denounce Tracy Morgan’s homophobic rant
Tracy Morgan issues apology for homophobic rant, says it ‘clearly went too far’

Comments (378 total) Add your comment
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  • Mark

    I’m certainly not a Tracy Morgan fan, but it sounds to me like a group trying to cash in on some publicity after his last screw up. They even felt the need to reference it.

    • While we’re at it

      The point the people in these groups are trying to make is that they are tired of being the humorous punching bags for a society filled with bullies. That’s one of the reasons why “South Park” is the gold-standard for making fun of a group—they have a tendency to level the playing field. If you’re going to make fun of a group of mentally handicapped kids—turn them into conniving villains with some depth to their characters—not just some poor kid in a wheelchair or with a prosthetic arm. That’s lame and boring.

      • tracy morgan’s father

        i’ll stab all you whiny beechaz for messin with my tracy!

      • Ever seen a Tracy Morgan show?

        I guess you haven’t sen his routine; he’s done this bit before, but and there’s more to it than being handicapped. I mean if you’re going to defend them, why not defend the fact that she’s [is girlfriend that he refers to, but referred to as a ‘criple’ above] is a diabetic or a smoker who needs to use a voice box to communicate because they’re on the depths of lung cancer. I agree with Mark. Several people make fun of this, why pick on him – oh that’s right he just got in trouble last week for his remarks on gays, why not? Also, the actress that appeared on FamGUy two seasons ago was in fact mentality disable; she thinks we should lighten because, at the end of the day, people that want to be treated like real people want to laugh, too.

      • #1 FAN

        Leave Tracy alone. He’s a COMEDIAN.

      • hangingTARD

        Need proof that Ree-tards are smarter than liberals.

        See Anthony Weiner
        President Clinton can put a cigar in an interns Vagina in the White House.

        Mr. Morgan the Comedian can insult whoever he wants.

        Including every Ree-Tarded Liberal. That means every single one of them.

      • The Hypnotoad

        A comment at EW that makes sense? Heaven help us!

      • Veronica Mars

        EW is taking a basking in this again. Sickening on the part of EW to keep rehashing this same garbage over and over.
        They take perverse pleasure in attacking comedians who are saying offense things IN THE CONTEXT OF A COMEDY CLUB.
        You don’t like his act? Don’t pay for it. Vote with your wallets. Don’t bask in the glory of it just to try and feel better about your lowly lives.

      • Michael

        Thanks Veronica Mars for stating the obvious. Your observations were profound.

      • Bill

        People are always looking to be first to acxt like they’re holier than though.

        FYI, the “R” in Arc stands for retarded, literally, so I’m not going to take PC advice from them.

    • #1 FAN

      And Lighten UP a little.

      • Michael

        I don’t think that the advocacy groups need to lighten up. Those who care deeply about issues are bound to voice their complaints when they are offended. I don’t see a problem with it. Tracy has a choice here. He can say whatever he wants, unfiltered and without apology and alienate people, be written off of 30 Rock or he can kowtow to those offended and save a fledgling career. I’m not sure that I understand why GLAAD and an advocacy group demanding an apology are “silencing him” or taking away his freedom of speech. He’s free to say whatever the H he wants to say and, he actually already did do so. He hasn’t been silenced. He chose to silence himself re: the gay controversy and will probably do the same with this one. There’s always a choice even if the consequences of making one are less than attractive.

      • DGH


        So why doesn’t GLAAD go after all comedians who dare make fun of the gay population? Its because Tracy is on a “hit” tv show and will get their cause more publicity and more donations.

      • Michael

        @DHG…Perhaps. But my post had little to do with motivation, so I’m not sure what exactly your point is. And, more importantly, what good would it serve GLAAD to go after a local comic in anywhere USA when they can go after a higher profile comedian. It’s much easier to call attention to a problem when a big name is attached to it.

      • Slob

        I watched the whole youtube video up there, and he was awesome. You guys need to lighten up and try to laugh once and a while.

    • hangingTARD

      Question: What is smarter than a communist Liberal?

      Answer: A Ree-Tarded communist Liberal

    • hangingTARD

      How is that Hope and Change working out for you Tracy?

      Don’t you find it funny the people you support are now going after your head. I do.

      Now be a man and tell the Liberals what the true Americans want to hear and gain fans for life.

      Call them OUT Tracy!

    • hangingTARD

      Tracy – If you want to talk about Retards you have to be more specific.

      Here is one one ReTard you can easily identify: James Hibberd

      • Veronica Mars

        WELL SAID. This author wrote no less that SIX articles on the same thing last time.
        He is a creeper.

    • Trixie

      What screw up? He didn’t screw anything up it was part of his act. I got news for all the politically correct people: Stop telling people what to say and how to say it. There, I said it.

    • Liberace

      Tracy Morgan made the mistake of not specifying it was Sarah Palin’s child he was talking about. If he had, all the left-wing throne sniffers would be coming to his defense! His gay-child routine was funny too. Gays have no sense of humor.

      • Anon.

        Gays have no sense of humor? Are you freaking kidding me?! It’s our highly developed sense of humor that keeps us from bashing all of the ignorant cusses that we encounter on a daily basis.

      • anon

        In the words of McBain, “That’s the joke…”

    • MysterWright

      I think its wrong that troublemakers whine about Tracy Morgan then go and whisper amongst anyone who will listen something far worse. At least Tracy is making an effort to give slow kids villainous super-strength. I think what’s scary to the status quo is that minorities are creating Beavis and Butt-Head or South Park shows now. Reruns of Diff’rent Strokes must somehow haunt the dreams of Children of the Corn-type antagonists now oozing their way around executive offices in Armani suits. Are those the types Randy Quaid is afraid are putting the hit on fellow actors? Stands to reason Tracy Morgan would be a big threat. He’s a successful black guy with SNL clout. The first guy since Chris Rock or Eddie Murphy to as professionally recognized. It seems to me that the same people pointing fingers at Tracy also see him as a mark. He gives voice to people whom don’t have them like gays and disabled people. Anything good starts out controversial then overtime becomes influential. Ex. Black Sabbath, Hulk Hogan, KISS… any celebreality star on VH1. The status quo doesn’t like that. It forces them to quit being richard craniums and fork over cash to get new good stuff started that the audience shows they like. Tracy’s got the heart now to someday become a black Rodney Dangerfield giving young comics an opening slot on his show.

      • MysterWright

        *to be as professionally recognized.

    • vandagoes

      The same ones doing most of the protesting were most likly ones that kept quite and snikkered about off color jokes about Sarah Palins baby.

      • carla tune

        People weren’t snickering at that baby or the fact that he has downs and you know it. People were snickering at his retarded mom.

    • Elizabeth

      I agree – this has been Tracy Morgan’s deal from the beginning. But this is a pile-on society because its too hard to think… ehhh.

    • xfgrg


      t s h i r t s -12

      s h o e s -35

      b i k i n i -17


    • Bill

      Everyone’s looking to be the first to act like they’re holier than though.

      FYI, the “R” in Arc stands for retarded, literally. So I’m not going to take PC advice from them.

    • VinceP

      I just watched Daniel Tosh use the same comparison between retarded people and chimpanzees, WORD FOR WORD in his Comedy Central special “Completely Serious”. No one seems to be slamming him for the reference.

  • Alex

    FFS, he’s a comedian. Comedians say offensive things ALL THE TIME. You ever seen Louis C.K., Sarah Silverman, etc., etc., etc.? They’re just jumping on Morgan because of his previous incident. If you’re going to get mad at him, you’ll have to try to ban all comedians. Let it go.

    • SLB

      No sh*t. This is nothing new from Tracy Morgan, or any comedian for that matter. I’m so sick of this political correct crap. Get over it people!

    • anonymous

      I doubt Sarah Silverman would say she’d stab her gay son and mean it. Though Morgan was telling a joke, I don’t doubt that he meant it some

      • rerun

        No, Sarah jokes about being raped. Totally different.

      • The Realist

        and she jokes about being molested as a little girl…..clean stuff

      • gregorovich512

        I know if I said I’d stab my gay son, that I would mean it – without reservation – without joking.

      • Class Act

        Right, Sarah Silverman mimics talking out of her ass and vagina for laughs. She’s a real talent.

      • Veronica Mars

        You think he MEANT it about stabbing a son? You are a sick sick freak “anonymous”.

    • Michael

      You are right. We have the choice to ban them or continue our support just like they have the choice to continue on with their offensive dialogues or not. I don’t see what the issue is. Both sides have choices.

      • Veronica Mars

        “Ban” them? What the hell are you talking about? Ban them from what? From comedy clubs?
        You’re pathetic.

      • Michael

        boycott d1ckhead. And, you are too much of a Cun1 to take on that moniker. You knew exactly what I was talking about but wanted to play the semantics game to prove your superiority. Judging from the comments you post on these boards and the obvious disdain you have for all involved, you seem to be the pathetic one for trolling around like some kind of b1tchy greek chorus.

  • Karate Pants

    This joke, while tasteless, just isn’t even in the same realm as his last mess. When will the media tire of following his stand-up act around and sensationalizing the same crap he – and countless other comedians – have being churning out for YEARS??? Ugh, move on already.

    • crispy

      These “jokes” aren’t even that offensive. It almost sounds like praise in a twisted sorta way. Is it just that the R-word is off limits?

      • Karate Pants

        Must be. Otherwise he’s only complimented them on their strength.

      • Karate Pants

        Okay, so actually…this is brilliant. By making a just barely borderline offensive joke, Tracy Morgan has successfully shifted our disdain from him to the offended groups. Look at the comments here alone. Everyone who called for his head a week ago is now rolling their eyes at the overly sensitive nature of the media and groups representing the special interests. GENIUS!

      • crispy

        LOL! He’s been playing us all along!

      • Big Walt

        Stupidly it is. The local gov’t entity to assist with this group used to be called MRDD (mentally retarded, developmentally disabled) then changed to DDS (developmental disabilities services) and I’m sure will soon change to handicapable services or something.

      • Ashley

        Uhh… He compared “retards” to monkeys. That’s not offensive?

    • JF

      Comparing males with special needs to chimps isn’t offensive?

      • conservative media

        “Evolution offends me so much! How dare he!” *eyeroll*

      • BLM

        No. He only said they’re strong like chimps. He didn’t say they are chimps.

      • PJS

        BLM: That is a comparison.

      • Ian

        So if I say a wrestler or weightlifter is as strong as an ox, they should be offended and take it as me comparing them to an ox??? Or should it just be seen as me comparing their strength to that of an ox??? Which sounds more sane to you?

      • Ian

        @ PJS, yes it is. A comparison of strength. It’s not exactly rocket science when you think it through for more than 3 seconds, or with more than 3 brain cells.

      • C Men

        Only if they’re black.

      • Ashley

        So, what I’m getting from these responses is that comparing someone to a monkey is a compliment? It obviously wasn’t meant that way.

      • teaj

        what do you have against monkeys?

  • AB

    I’m certainly not a TM fan, but it sounds to me like a bad comic trying to cash in on free publicity. Someone is giving this guy bad advice.
    He wants to nuke his crappy career so bad, let him.

  • PJ

    Tracy Morgan has said stuff like this before and nobody cared, but now that EW is the Tolerance Police (with Warbler uniforms), this man will constantly be under fire.

    • Rob

      How is EW the tolerance police??? While not as big as his anti-gay rant, this has been featured on several news sites…both TV and the web.

  • TlO

    “It should be pointed out that jokes like Morgan’s latest are not hugely unusual on the stand-up comedy circuit and one wonders if this routine mocking people with disabilities would have made headlines if not for the media keeping such a close eye on Morgan following his previous controversy.”

    So it’s okay to offend certain groups but not others?

    • Monty

      Duh…which is why South Park really is the gold standard, because they rip everyone. If you pick apart a comedian’s routine, you can find something to be offended about. “What’s the deal with airline food?” Oh really Jerry Seinfeld? My mother made airline food for 30 years! He took love and pride in her work and is now dying of cancer. I’M OFFENDED.

      ok not really, but if you are going to a stand up show, you’re asking to be offended in some way, shape or form. Do I think it’s ok to make fun of mentally handicapped kids? No. Do I think comparing the strength of a mentally handicapped kid to the strength of a wild animal is offensive? No.

      • stan

        That’s retarded. Grow a pair.

      • Kanye

        Wrong and offensive are two different things. What Tracy said may not be wrong because of where it was said (during stand-up, comedians have a license to say all kinds of offensive things; it’s practically expected of them) but what he said was offensive. Would you feel comfortable telling a retarded mother that her son is as strong as a chimp? I’m not saying that Morgan should have to make the apology rounds again, but why are people pretending that what he said wasn’t offensive?

      • Monty

        @ Stan I’m not sure if you were replying to me or the person i was replying to. Just in case I was not clear, all I was saying is that if people pick apart comedy acts, they are bound to find something that offends them. Personally, I am in the camp that says “its all ok to make fun of, or none if it is”. I like all sorts of comedians, but if one of them happens to tell a joke that offends me I’m not going to write an op-ed about it. That joke wasn’t for me. I’ll hope I like the next joke and the next day I’ll move on with my life.

  • bittergaymark

    The irony here is that Tracy Morgan has always struck me as being borderline retarded anyway. Seriously, listen to his voice… He just sounds mentally challenged. At the very least, the man is borderline.

    • James

      Okay, I’ll avoid saying the ‘r’ word but I’d always thought that about him too! He seriously talks like a “special” person. And there’s nothing wrong with that. But wvwn while I do love humor that oversteps some bounds sometimes, the fact is I didn’t find his “Annie” routine very funny. Not offensive to me, just wasn’t funny!

  • Rob

    At this point, Tracy Morgan should just let Tina Fey put the words in his mouth. Especially since they would actually be funny.

  • Jeremy

    When will this idiot realize he’s not funny and everything he says is hurtful and not amusing? I think his career needs to be over now.

    • Sean

      You’re right. He’s on one of the most popular sitcoms on TV and sells out comedy audiences whenever he performs. He must suck.

    • tracy morgan’s father

      i’ll stab you with my cripple girlfriend’s leg brace!

    • DGH

      Awww did someone’s feelings get hurt poor baby!!!

    • C Men

      And don’t even think of messing with a retarded chimp. I’m pretty sure that’s what killed Superman.

  • Sleepyhead

    If comedians are not allowed to make fun of people I guess there will be no more comedians! Why is it that you can still make fun of fat people and white people and that is OK? I love America!

    • e4ia

      Agreed. There are a ton of comedians who make very un-PC jokes about social groups all the time, and many of those comedians are very funny. What made Morgan’s “gay rant” cross the line was that he was advocating violence and killing a child if that child belonged to one of those groups. His “retarded” joke sounds like something that would be said on Tosh.O or by many other comedians.

      • Twenty

        Agree with you here. Apparently none of these groups have ever seen Tosh.0.

    • Cami

      Absolutely, because there is NO other comedy than the kind that involves making fun of others.

      Little did I know all the schoolyard bullies were really just preparing for their careers as stand up comics!

  • Adam S.

    He’s a comedian. He’s made his living like this his entire life. People need to calm down.

  • Craig S

    Are we pretending like this story isn’t a day old?

    • Channing Taintum

      LOL, it’s EW, I’m surprised this story made it up here this week.

    • Danny

      Exactly. Everyone knows what he is by what comes out of his mouth. Do not make him more important than what he is.

  • jrs


  • Esox

    Uproar over Gays?-Yup
    Uproar over the Mentally Challenged?-Nowhere near as much.

    What’s the difference here? I don’t get it. Whil I support acomedian’s right to be offensive, I don’t get where the collective yawn over this is coming from? Maybe GLAAD just has better PR.

    • Marissa

      If he said he would stab his son if he was retarded, there would be a whole different reaction. This is not even in the same realm of his previous comments. People need to stop trying to create drama (and news stories) where there is none.

      • Esox

        Good point Marissa

      • Veronica Mars

        Well said, Marissa.
        But this EW writer, along with a few others, are notorious for trying to create stories like this. Whatever will get them views and comments.
        Castrated lowlifes at EW for the most part. Sick freaks that contradict themselves from one article to the next.

    • nitwitpatrol


  • Jeremy

    This country will continue to go downhill as long as people can’t laugh at themselves.

    • Roekest

      Agreed. Imagine what these idiots would be saying if Richard Pryor were at his peak now. Someone needs to take the badges away from the PC Police. They’re abusing their power.

      • Ian

        Amen to that. If Pryor, Kinison, or the king himself Bill Hicks were trying to launch their careers now, they’d get nowhere. The PC police would be all over them, and would turn them all into Kevin James and Ray Romano…

    • gretta

      That offends me, Jeremy! So do retards… Why can’t they just get their act together???

      • Chicago Nick

        I don’t see nor hear anyone commenting on the fact that the first amendment protects both offensive and non offensive speech. Once you open Pandora’s box the next target will be pulling Obama impersonators named Reggie Brown from Chicago town off stage because you can’t make fun of the Half Black Fuhrer…

        Oh wait, they already did that last week…..Silence though from the left and the people who pulled him were undercover RINO’s pretending to be conservatives. Had they not pulled him then the PC Gestapo would have acted most certainly.

        This country in it’s present state is done, as it’s filled with nothing but spineless puzzzies with obviously far too much time on their hands sucking back welfare and never ending welfare checks to be worried about this crap.

        I mean, I hear and read all kinds of attacks on Sarah Palin’s autistic child and these PC Gestapo Brownshirts are laughing right along with Maher, and Stewart, and Colbert and friends.

        Meanwhile we hear and see all the under the radar racism and outright filth being spewing coming from that freaking Cartoon every under 40 person seems to be ok with and why? Because they’re the words of the writer humans filtered through cute little kiddie cartoons. What Morons.

        Either you’re against offensive speech in all instances or not at all and frankly if you wish to have free speech then it’s all on the table.

        Everyone’s a target or no one is.

      • Chicago Nick

        Oh and by the way, I’m a crippled American born Dago whop with MS, been in a wheelchair for 8 years now and none of this ‘word shiittt’ bothers me one freakin’ bit obviously.

        When we were kids the phrase ‘sticks and stones my break my bones but words will never hurt me” was prevalent and frankly It’s served my well for my 45 years and still does.

        This is all created by the left dividing everyone into little sub groups who can and cannot be offended and mostly brought on by the Gay Gestapo, and then every other group goes, ‘well what about our group’ and rightfully so.

        Again it’s either everyone’s a target or no one. Pick em.

      • nananapoopoo

        Please raise you hand if even before all this way overboard drama it hadn’t crossed you mind that Tracey may have some mental delays…just sayin. I’m bored with what whiny dull whiners America is becoming. We should laugh at pain of make light of it dare it to bring us down and now picking at this guy of questionable intelligence and talent is getting old. So lame.

    • Cami

      So Morgan is only laughing at himself? He’s a mother with a “retarded” kid? Who knew!

      • Robin

        No, but a mother with a “retarded” kid can laugh at herself. Are you really beyond that simple kind of understanding? The people in the audience are the ones laughing, not Tracy.

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