In 1977 the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson ran a hideously unfunny and offensive sketch called "Hang a Darkie," that ridicules a black cast member of the classic '70s TV series CPO Sharkey as a "black man" who should be hung from a tree by Don Rickles. It was played on NBC, which is currently owned by GE, but back then was probably still owned by the Chinese.
Here's a choice excerpt from the show's script:
*Johnny sees a black man*
Hey, a black man!
*Johnny walks over to said black man*
Hey, yo, black man, how's it going, daddy!
*Johnny says to Don Rickles*
Uhh, yeah. Har de har har.
You may know that one of the Burbank Studio's janitors, Big Daddy's Trash, is African-American. He voiced his displeasure with the skit and got into a heated off-air argument with Don Rickles about it. But so far NBC hasn't acknowledged that there's anything wrong with it, and Johnny's corpse is resting safely beneath the earth's surface rather than above the ground in a wet cardboard box on an abandoned lot in an ethnic ghetto, which is where it belongs.
As an African-American, and as an avid watcher of television I am ashamed and disgusted that NBC once allowed this to broadcast on their airwaves. If you feel the same way, you can let them know here:
505 8th Ave 19th Floor
New York, NY 10018
And if you really want to send a message, and make NBC hear it, you can contact their advertisers about this. I may try to put together a list of sponsors, or if anybody else has one please pass it along.
And here is an online petition you can sign: