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Dear Garrison, I was raised

June 30, 2006 |

Dear Garrison,
I was raised listening to your show, and I've always enjoyed your humor when it comes to religious life. As an Episcopalian though, I have to let you know though that I was pretty offended by your reference to playing strip-chess with the newly elected presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church, Katharine Jefferts Schori. It's not that I object to the notion of strip chess, or that I think religious leaders are above being laughed at, but it was a cheap shot. If you wanted to laugh at a position of hers, or a stupid thing she's done, fine. But making a sexual joke about a woman, just because she's the first woman elected to a position of authority in a denomination is inappropriate. I think it shows a lack of respect for women in positions of authority and for my denomination. The saddest part is that it wasn't even funny.

A disappointed listener,
Kara R.

I don't think I said that, Kara. The boat in the story, the S.S. Saltine, was owned by the Mormons and the Episcopalians and the captain was an Episcopalian woman, but bishophood wasn't a part of the deal. At any rate, there are a number of women bishops in the Episcopalian church, including Cathy Roskam whom I know from New York. So it wasn't about Bishop Schori. You may be right about the joke not being funny, but is that so sad? Not to me. If you do comedy, you accept the fact that some jokes will fall flat. And at a certain point, failed jokes take on a comic aspect of their own.
I could tell you some of the failed jokes over the years and you'd laugh yourself silly.

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