133 thoughts on “Blackface Boxing Matches”

  1. Fundamentalists’ arbitrary attitudes toward what constitutes worldliness will always baffle me. Pretending to put on a boxing match (which is closely associated with drinking, betting, immodestly dressed sign-girls, and men beating each others’ faces in) is acceptable, but a group of Christians singing with eyes closed and hands raised while a guitar, base, drums, and keyboard plays is “worldly”?

    They should give to others the freedom they extend to themselves.

    1. Yep; what is put on in the name of humor or a skit are often taken directly from things that they preach against.

      I remember sitting at one conference where they did a skit that was taken from a “Monty Python” sketch. I’m sure that they preach against such television. Always made me scratch my head, even when I was “in”.

      Not to defend CMBC, but isn’t blackface still used? I seem to recall Ted Danson or someone doing it in relatively recent times.

        1. I think Danson was dating actress Whoppi Goldberg at the time, and did it at a roast in her honor?

        2. Time flies .. didn’t think it was so long ago as that. I remember an uproar about him doing it, but I don’t recall who made the uproar.

        1. I can’t speak for the usefulness of every Monty Python movie or skit, but I strongly believe that everyone, even (or especially) fundies, should watch Life of Brian at least once.

        2. Then again, if I remember correctly the opening scene of Life of Brian has one of the wise men in blackface. Or is that another skit I’m thinking of? At any rate, it’s good to lighten up sometimes and laugh at satire. Sometimes important things can be learned thereby! (By the way, how are you feeling? I hope you’re well; it’s always good to see you posting.)

        3. Clearly, yes, someone who thought of it had seen Monty Python’s Flying Circus.

          I’d heard that Life of Brian is crude in places.

        4. GR, Life of Brian is perhaps a bit crude in paces. There’s nudity too. But it’s funny as all get out too. I own a copy.

          Nico, I think you’re remembering right- one of the wise men was in blackface.

          I’m not feeling so well today. We’re shifting around some of my meds and I’m rather suffering with it.

        5. Monty Python and the Holy Grail had one scene that was one of the funniest things I ever saw while simultaneously it made me think that I really shouldn’t be laughing. At one point in the movie one of the knights on the quest witnesses a heavenly vision. The knight falls on his knees and begins saying a humble prayer only to be interrupted by a booming voice that says something like, “Every time people talk to me it’s always, [said with disgusted mocking tone] ‘forgive me this, forgive me that,’ [back to booming voice] Stop groveling! If there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s groveling!”

    2. I would like to combine the absurdity of this post with yesterday’s contribution. I remember in the mid-1980s when Bob Gray Sr. had Fritz Von Erich (from wrestling fame) come speak to the church for a big day. Even then, when I was drinking the koolaide, I wondered about that one.

      1. White guy sounded like he was Curly or imitating him. (I couldn’t hear the introductions — very bad audio).

  2. How was that even supposed to be funny? That was the most pointless display of idiocy I’ve ever seen.

    Also, I feel that the fact that the guy was wearing his boxers on the outside of his pants was the appearance of evil.

      1. Very true, but it’s not the kind of “evil” these ghastly people meant.
        Thank God they didn’t go full blackface, with the silly lips and eyes, like the negative of a circus clown.

      1. If they’re trying to reach people today, why use a cultural reference that’s 30 years old? The kids and teens in the room don’t even know who he is!

  3. I suppose this shouldn’t be too shocking. Most IFB churches idealize the 1950 American culture. So their compassion and understanding of race relations is pre-civil rights era.

    1. Unfortunately, your comment isn’t even remotely snarky. For the record, the best mentor I ever had at work was an African American man. He had two masters degrees and was sharp as a whip. More importantly, he knew how to lead people. He’s the one who encouraged me to get my MBA, and taught me by example and encouragement. Very grateful for his help!

      1. I wonder how many blessings like you have described many fundies have missed out because they close doors on people. They either offend someone racially or declare them going to hell because of their view of which bible they read or what their eschatological view is.

    2. Sad, but true. And they feel justified in their racism because they’ve equated those arbitrary values with Biblical teaching.

      An evangelist my mother adored use to preach that the prohibition against being “unequally yoked” also applied to interracial marriage. Of course he had to turn the whole passage upside down to make it fit what he wanted it to say, but that was no problem for him. No use preaching from the Bible if you can’t twist it to suit your own needs, right?

      1. When you don’t have to worry about the context of the verses you are using to support your view and when the Bible is simply there to prop up your view, turning the passage upside down is not hard for you. Sad.

    3. I suppose this shouldn’t be too shocking. Most IFB churches idealize the1950 American culture. So their compassion and understanding of race relations is pre-civil rights era.”

      The last two pastors I had while in the Bob Jones wing [camp?] of Fundamentalism were both decent, Christian gentlemen. The first pastor was an older man who though he didn’t particularly like black/white marriage, kept his opinions to himself while preaching. His successor never showed any evidence of racism and the congregation under both men was actually comprised of people of many different ethnic backgrounds.

      The experience was different in the Fundy and Ultra-Fundy camp. For some (not all) in that group I would agree with the last part of your statement with a minor modification: “So their compassion and understanding of race relations is pre-Civil War era.”

  4. Some things are so idiotic you’d think even the Fundamentalist culture would be beyond embracing them. You’d be wrong, of course. Nothing is too idiotic for Fundies to put on stage.

  5. Looks like a strange display of gnosticism, the White boxer representing all that is good in the World of course. …

  6. Most of the IFB, as I’ve said before, is imbued with racism–and if they were to admit it even to themselves, they’d make up a bible reason for it.

    1. Notice that there’s a broken white line going down the middle of the aisle. Is this supposed to represent a two-lane road with a passing zone?

  7. I’m surprised they didn’t go all out and have a fake Hispanic to go with the fake black dude. (Except that they seem to feel the need to work in the Three Stooges imposters as much as possible.) If you are going to get cheap laughs from stereotyping, might as well do it right and go all the way.

    1. In their defense, the kids playing Larry, Moe, and Curly really aren’t too bad. With a better script and director they might even be pretty good.

  8. Oh, dear God. The Clue Bus doesn’t come anywhere near their neighborhood, does it? Blackface hasn’t been regarded as funny by just about anybody since “Amos and Andy.” Of course, the televised version of “Amos and Andy” was a product of the Fundies’ beloved 1950’s. I should know better.

    1. FWIW, my father still thinks Amos & Andy (on the radio) is the funniest thing ever. And, to be fair, it’s better than most junk on TV these days.

  9. But praise Jee-hee-suussss, the are Biblical Christians as opposed to those of us who are just Christian!

  10. Oh My God! Who in the holy, blue balled, ninth circle of hell does crap like this anymore?!? I have to admit, I’m really happy they put this on You Tube. I hope it goes viral and lots and lots of people tell them exactly what they think of this.

    1. ” Who in the holy, blue balled, ninth circle of hell does crap like this anymore?!?”

      Seriously. I am in awe with the way you turn a phrase. Well done.

  11. If they wanted to portray a black male boxer, why didn’t they just get a black member of their curch to. . . oh, wait. . . nevermind. . .

    1. Exactly. I attended two very large IFB churches in my youth. Both of them, in their heydays, enjoyed regular Sun. AM attendances of close to 1000. Not a single black person to be found, unless you count the scattering of black bus kids in the first of these churches. Both churches had schools that were “open” to the public. One black fellow each.

      Toward the end of my time with them they did have a few Hispanic families join, and eventually both churches provided Spanish services. This was Central FL in the mid-late 80s–rejecting the Hispanic population would have been attendance (and therefore income) suicide. Blacks, though, they can stay on their own side of the tracks.

  12. I didn’t think that it was that bad. The black guy was supposed to be Mr. T, the other guy was supposed to be Curly from the stooges. Judging by the patriotic shorts, I think it was a bad spoof of Rocky III. The white guy is getting hammered on and made to look the fool. Definitly not the best judgement used.. Especially in this day and age. My former pastor told me of a time that him and his students went blackface and pretended to be Jesse Jackson and a black choir back in the 70’s. Now that’s definitely something way more tasteless then this.

  13. Ok, haven’t even made it a minute in and I am positive that “Let’s get ready to rumble” is trademarked…

    Also, they accuse other churches of simply existing to “entertain” people, but what is this with their elaborate set and hours of practice for this one skit?

  14. Black face aside, I have serious issues with this type of entertainment even if it was done for the children. First, they implied that there was a Second chapter in Jude. Second, this was performed in the church sanctuary. The sanctuary should be a place set aside for holiness and worship of The Lord. It should be a place of reverence. This church is dead spiritually. Start peeling back the onion and you’ll find all kinds of stuff. Third, who/what paid for this elaborate production? Tithes and offerings? A better use is those that are hurting and in need. I know nothing about this church–only it’s type, but I’ll wager that it has a pastor personality cult with the mog having a nice expense account.

    1. Well… Bro. Fugate grew up… learning from such men as Dr. Jack Hyles, Dr. Lee Roberson, and many, many others.

      Probable YES on cult of personality.

    1. I agree – that was the stupidest thing I’ve seen in a while. In fact, rather than being funny, it was quite irritating to watch. I didn’t get the point of the whole skit/program. Also, they sure put a lot of effort into that whole skit for something so pointess (just look at the stage setup).

  15. Calm down and find something a little more relevant. You’ll post anything at this point and time. You and MPT.

    1. Well, you should only post what is God honoring. So, no criticisms of Men of God, no ridiculing churches or missionaries, no posting of anything negative about sexual improprieties by ministers. In fact maybe you should simply post a video of Just as I am, in an endless loop.

      1. Was that the ever elusive white relevant?

        I’m not sure I believe the white relevant even exists.

        Or have my memes become unequally mixyolked?

        1. Ok, Michael, you and Uncle Wilver have returned the laugh! Nice!! (SFL is better than Sat. morning cartoons. That’s saying something.)

    2. Oh, you mean it’s not relevant to poke fun at stupid people who think using humor that was considered offensive 50 years ago is a good idea? Although, I have to admit, it would be hard to make them look any dumber than they’re already making themselves.

    3. Yes, churches making fun of racial minorities in the name of Jesus is totally irrelevant. Especially when the IFB church is known for racial discrimination and hatred. Totally irrelevant.

    4. Jimmie, I have a suggestion for an excellent Hidden Camera episode that just might reveal how relevant this discussion might be.

      Go to the south. Or at least to a rural area. Find a list of the IFB/conservative churches.

      Recruit two friends that have a lively sense of humor and a good deal of self-control. (You’ll understand the need for self-control in a moment.)

      One of these friends should be the whitest white girl you know. Blond, pert, just the cutest little thing.

      The other friend should be the biggest black fellow you know. I mean big. And I mean black. What in the good-ol’ timey days would be called a black buck. (My friend Sean would be perfect for this. He’d be happy to help out if you cannot provide your own.)

      Fit them with a hidden camera. Have them drop in on the IFB churches and request premarital counselling. Make sure your black friend is not so offended that he loses his self-control and kicks the pastor’s ass.

      Now, I reckon not all IFB pastors would have a problem with this little scenario, but I suspect enough of them would to give you an idea of how relevant a discussion of racism in the IFB actually is.

  16. Wow, this cult has no clue, but of course being a cult, they believe they are right.
    Go read Joyce Zictherman’s “I Fired God” and see what the crap these cults get into. Jesus is no where to be found.

  17. What, they weren’t afraid that some of the young ladies would be seduced by this blackfaced man and cause a scandal? Dare they think so lightly of white Southern womanhood as to put such a stumblingblock in their way? Sure, this was only a white guy playing a part, but you can’t be too careful.

    In their defense, at least they weren’t playing that cuss’d Egyptian-music song “Eye of the Tiger” for a soundtrack.

      1. BJg, that’s very kind of you, but all the glory for any success I have belongs to the Lord. And to Mark Twain. Anyone who wants to be a public smart-ass HAS to study Twain.

        Don’t sell yourself short. You have the wits of at least 2 or 3 men. In fact, I believe you may have stolen the wits of Dr. Fuggit and socked them away somewhere. He seems to be running on empty.

        1. Well, the good Doctor can’t help his name. Some major news outlets have picked this up and the Doctor Pastor can’t say “Sorry, I didn’t know what was going on” enough. The good thing is they have a big Sunday coming up to take their minds off of the scandal–you remember, the Uncle Tom’s Cabin Fever Sunday extravaganza scheduled for March 16. Should be great fun!

          https://twitter.com/ClaysMillBapt/status/438720639956824064

  18. I love how there’s this obsession with not doing anything that could possibly ever be construed as sin so you “don’t hurt the cause of Christ.”

    And then stuff like this?

    What exactly IS Christ’s cause?

    I thought it was the salvation of man (though I’ve been told it’s to have “Christians” look as good as possible…so you don’t hurt his cause…which is to look good so that…)

    But suppose it IS his cause to save people from their sin, how the heck is this not “hurting” that cause?

    -to be clear, I don’t believe God’s plans can be frustrated. I’m taking issue with their logic.

    Graaawr.
    Sorry, I’m still working through other IFB issues but “cause of Christ” is one that’s really bothering me right now.

  19. Oh, for crying out …

    As Molly Ivins used to say about the Texas Legislature, “You can dress ‘em up, but you can’t take ‘em out in public.”

  20. Discussion question:
    Which drugs, consumed in what amounts, would make this skit actually entertaining for the audience?

      1. I don’t usually post LOL because I usually don’t and I can’t bring myself to type lies. But I actually did LOL at dumbassinthal. I WILL use that like my 1970s Christian school used the Magic Purple Mimeographin Machine (and most likely will not attribute you any cred). Thank you!

        1. I don’t ask for or expect any credit, as I mentioned in another comment. All the glory belongs to the Lord. I’m just a humble servant. Besides, I probably stole it from someone else.

        2. Ah, I loved the smell of those purple mimeographs in the morning, a rare pleasure today’s kids will never know.

        3. Here’s a bit of arcane period trivia:
          The machine that used the bluish-purple ink was not a mimeograph; it was an AB Dick Ditto machine (a similar printing process, but from a different company). A true mimeograph used black ink (usually– there were also other colors available, such as red and green, but if you wanted more than one color, you had to do the printing twice, with different stencils, and clean the machine in between colors).

          But even then, lots of people called the purple one a mimeograph, so it’s fine to keep calling it that. And, yes, the smell of that ink was really something.

  21. Yup. The stupid one beats the black(face) boxer.

    It was a way to insult black people. In their eyes, a white buffoon can beat the best black professional any day. (And yes, if one actually gets to be the heavy-weight champion of the world, they must be a professional boxer!)

    But much of fundamentalism is built on racist attitudes, the idea of white superiority, and a “God love me more than you” thumb-nosing mentality. They think the Three Stooges is “good clean fun” despite how such episodes put down people of color.

    Melatonin Impaired has an excellent point. They were doing this in a place of worship. Now Baptists like to point out that the church is the “people” not the building, but that only serves to illustrate that to IFBers, nothing is considered holy — except maybe gun ownership. They treat sacred things as profane, strip out the dignity in a situation, and mock others. They may talk about “the Cause of Christ,” but they have no cause other than their own amusement. The skit certainly did not generate any reverence in anybody.

    I would bet that every person in the auditorium would say, “I’m not racist. I have black friends!” But few black people with any dignity could have sat through that mockery.

    I guess I am reminded of Psalm 1. These people cheering in the audience were sitting in the seat of the scornful. They are not in the wrong crowd. They ARE the wrong crowd.

    1. rtgmath,
      Sadly, what you said is exactly correct. This video is nothing more than an expression of white supremacy. The subtext is that the slowest, most inept white person can defeat the best that the blacks can offer. This makes me very sad. It’s done in the name of Jesus, with a bible verse in the background. Black fearing, black hating, white supremacists spewing forth their hatred and racial disdain in a church. I say again what I’ve said before: There is a reason I no longer go to church. If I were to go to heaven with people such as these, it would be hell for me.

      Having said that, I told my wife that I’d like to visit the Episcopal church based on what you, and others, have said on SFL. I need to sense God’s love. I need to believe that He is out there, and maybe, just maybe, that He cares for us.

      I do appreciate all of you on this site who encourage us to keep trying to find a church. My alternative is to let this take its natural course into agnosticism.
      Regards,
      BJg

      1. Wonderful! To prepare for your visit, here’s an excellent explanation of what happens in a Eucharist in a typical Episcopal church–

        http://kingofpeace.org/walkthrough.htm

        Two caveats.

        1. Make sure it is an Episcopal church. There are a number of “Anglican” breakaway sects that have no official connection with the Episcopal church.

        2. Be prepared to exercise. We are an aerobic church! The general practice is “stand to praise, kneel to pray, sit to learn.” You will not be in an auditorium, which implies sitting passively listening to a long sermon. You will be in the nave, and that is the root word for “navy.”

        Your focus will be on the altar, not the preacher. As a baptized Christian you are welcome to receive the blessed Bread and Wine, without question.

        1. Let us know, please, about your visit. Preferably in a separate post so we don’t have to backtrack through over a hundred posts next week.

          This is the season of Lent, and the service might be a bit different from what is outlined in the “walk through” from the link. But the basic structure is the same.

        2. Also note- no one will mind if you just sit quietly and observe. You don’t have to do the ‘aerobics’ if you are not comfortable doing so. Episcopalians are generally an easygoing sort, and you will be welcome however you wish to participate.

          I was so burned from my years in fundy/pente churches that for a year or more, I just sat and listened during services in my parish. And people were just happy that I was there.

        3. Amen to Liutgard’s comments. Plus, do not expect pressure to join or to become involved. Go at whatever pace you feel comfortable.

          However, any Episcopal cleric will be glad to meet with you and honestly answer your questions. Many, including me, come from other church backgrounds and are used to inquiries.

          Fear not!

  22. Is this actually blackface? The camera is too far away for me to tell. If it’s the same guy as is in the still image, that’s pretty realistic looking to me. Considering how obvious blackface usually looks and the ‘quality’ of their Stooge costumes. I have my doubts.

    Darrell, do you have any other sources for this?

  23. Why is always a issue when a white man does black face but when Dave chappel does a corny acting white face then it’s ok ?? Double standards reverse racism whatever you want to call it I don’t care just lighten up people not everything is meant to be against the black man

    1. “Why is [it] always a [sic] issue when a white man does black face but when Dave chappel [sic] does a corny acting white face then it’s ok??”

      Without trying to be an ass about this, American slavery from about 1619 to 1865 followed by decades of Jim Crow may have something to do with the answer to your question.

    2. I was raised in Birmingham, Alabama in Jim Crow days. I remember the blacks having to sit on the back of the city busses. I remember the segregated water fountains and restaurants. I was witness to all of this. My ancestors (to my great shame) were slave owners. Please don’t talk about reverse racism. Caucasians (such as I) have no room to speak of that. We treated our African American brothers and sisters in a totally depraved way. We owe them a debt of sorrow and repentance.

      And don’t even get me going about the way we treated Native Americans. IF we are ever to find racial healing in this nation, the effort should be spearheaded in the Christian church. But sadly this is not the case. In the name of Jesus these churches are spreading fear and hatred. God, please help us all.

      1. Thanks so much for this, BJg. Your comment made me think of this passage from Wendell Berry’s excellent book on racism’s effect on white society, _The Hidden Wound_ (1988/2000):

        “If the white man has inflicted the wound of racism upon black men, the cost has been that he would receive the mirror image of that wound into himself. As the master, or as a member of the dominant race, he has felt little compulsion to acknowledge it or speak of it; the more painful it has grown the more deeply he has hidden it within himself. But the wound is there, and it is a profound disorder, as great a damage in his mind as it is in his society.”

      2. I used to live in Cahaba Heights, a suburb of Birmingham, and now live in Montgomery. I know whereof you speak.

        I hope you have had the opportunity to visit the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, which is across the street from the 16th Street Baptist Church, and in Montgomery the Rosa Parks museum and the MLK Memorial Dexter Avenue Baptist Church and parsonage.

        1. Jay, I’ve not been back to Birmingham since my mother’s death in 1998, so I’ve not seen the Civil Rights Institute. Being back there brought back too many memories of the 1960s racial strife. I sure hope it’s better now.

    1. In the 1920’s and 30’s things were drastically different. We must not just our grandparents (or great-grandparents for some) according to our time. Really. Seriously.

      B.R.O.

      1. Ah, but it’s so much better than that eeeevil devil’s music Rock & Roll, never mind how many people are offended.
        (Sad thing, Jolson is still very good.)

  24. Well I hardly ever comment on this site and then my one comment here was not shown. Well I am 82 now so maybe i was not making a l ot of sense, I thought that it was relevent to the discussion….. Not worth repeating. Too much work for an old man.
    I maybe will try one more time if something good comes up….

  25. I know I am late to the game: I spent a few days reading all of the comments. It has been said that the most segregated time in North America is Sunday morning. I attended two different types of schools growing up. Until the 9th grade, I attended the crown jewel of Christian schools in Lubbock Texas. I had a teacher that maintained that the Native Americans were godless savages that through their heathen ways deserved to be conquered. This same teacher maintained that slavery was biblical and was within the right of a Christian to participate. The same teacher also said that slaves actually loved being on the plantation. My mom had her PhD in history; so she koolade proofed me. After the ninth grade, I was a student at Dunbar Struggs High School. This school was the first black high school in Lubbock, Texas. This was 1985, and the schools in Lubbock had only been desegregated since the early 1970’s. My cousins that preceded me by a decade had each been the first white head cheerleaders at the school. I didn’t know what to expect. I found unconditional acceptance. I found love. I found true Christianity at a public school. What a turnaround considering all I found at the Christian school was hate, intolerance and greed. Christian school was where I learned the value of the superficial. Ralph Lauren Polo shirts, and Mercedes Benz. Dunbar is where I learned the value of humanity and humbleness.

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