You Be The Judge. (We think not.)

Is Sarah Silverman Homophobic?

Homophobia comes in all shapes and forms. It can be slashing a gay couple’s tires or a subtle intimation of pedophile tendencies. What it can’t be, however, is funny. One reader apparently ain’t laughing at the these Sarah Silverman quips. He writes:

If you are a hipster like Sarah Silverman, are you granted special permission to
be a bigot?

And say things like “I don’t mean fag like homosexual, I mean fag like retard”?
My friend who is the parent of a mildly learning disable child might take
offense at that one.

And what about saying “Gay. Bisexual. They are both gross.”

As in the queer case of Choire Sicha, we actually think Silverman’s funny. Are we being homophobic? Should GLAAD take on Sarah Silverman and her rascally ways? Listen:

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  • SexintheCity

    She is on every website with her new campaign. This is totally not cool.

  • Mikey Garcia


    We really need to lighten up here, guys.

  • Mikey Garcia

    You can’t just take a comediennes words out of context! If you pay attention to her entire act(s), you will see that she highlights stereotypes and prejudices in a very comical way so that we can see how RETARDED (sorry parent of a mildly learning disabled child) they truly are.

  • Dawster

    i don’t think she’s homophobic… she’s just an idiot. i don’t find her funny, i never have. she always reminded me of that little girl in grade school who would eat dirt so everyone would like her….

    in the course of comedy like this, she’s trying to be funny and “edgy”. many comics think they can say anything they want for the sake of the joke or the art. you know what? if they were ACTUALLY funny, they would be able to come up with good jokes that didn’t step on people’s toes.

    it’s called “comic genius”… and sarah doesn’t have it. her only tolerable jokes are the ones where she is the butt of the joke… everything else is just sad rambling.

    (i just realized there are two BIG adverts for her show in eye-shot while i’m writing this…)

  • Wolfi

    Oh please, that reader clearly needs to get some perspective. Doesn’t do ‘our cause’, whatever that might be, a whole lot of good if we’re starting to alienate some of our biggest allies by making them seem like homophobes through taking their ‘in character’ words out of context!

  • Paul Raposo

    I thought she was at first, but after seeing her show, I think she isn’t playing Ms. Silverman the real person, she’s playing Ms. Silverman the douchebag.

    Her character uses anti-gay language, but also racial and misogynistic language. I think she is trying to take every phobia, bigotry and hateful person and roll them up into one. Her character comes off as everything that is wrong with humanity. I guess her character is the Archie Bunker for the 21st century.

    Although I don’t like the fact that comedians still use anti-gay slurs for laughs, she isn’t taking the easy road and she uses all the untouchable words. While many comics will say fag but never nigger, or cunt, Ms. Silverman has at it and sticks a finger in the eye of a society that knows people like her character exist, but turn a blind eye to them because they don’t pick on their particular group.

    My concern with the show is the two actors who portray the gay couple she’s friends with. Their catch phrase is, “I’m so gay for you” and every episode involves them escalating a silly argument into a war of words and actions, that I think ridicules gays–or maybe not.

    Like the episode where one guy became obsessed with TAB and his BF escalated their love of the drink to absurd heights and at the end, the moral of the story was you can’t force someone to like something that they don’t really like, it’s ok if they don’t like the same things as you and it’s no one’s business what we like.

    Now, are they saying gay men try to force straight people to be gay, or are they saying straight people shouldn’t force gay people to be straight? Maybe I’m too dense to figure it out, but at first I thought it came off as saying gay men are pushy, but after watching a second time it seems like they are saying straight people are pushy.

    In the end, her character always gets the shit end of the stick and comes off as the type of person you don’t want for a neighbour. Yet, she does get laughs with her anti-everybody language, so I wonder if the message is really getting through to the people that it should.

  • Dubwise

    No. 3 Mikey Garcia says:
    You can’t just take a comediennes words out of context! If you pay attention to her entire act(s), you will see that she highlights stereotypes and prejudices in a very comical way so that we can see how RETARDED (sorry parent of a mildly learning disabled child) they truly are.


  • fanboi

    i have tried to watch but find her show unwatchable. I usually really enjoy her standup, but it just seems like her show is aimed at the stupidest, most easily amused section of the public. I realize you can’t go broke underestimating the intelligence of the public, but its a shame that people watch crap like this while quality truly smart and funny shows die slow unobserved deaths.

  • fanboi

    Also I bet the average fan of the show isn’t smart enough to realize she is kidding.

  • Alexa

    Sometimes the best way to point out how pathetic something is, is to be so over the top about it that it just empahasizes how ridiculous it is. That’s what Sarah does. It’s what Stephen Colbert does, too. She’s just a lot cruder about it.

  • Ash

    This nonsense is so retarded and gay.

  • Dawster

    Alexa… you just proved my point. Steven Colbert can be funny, and play the “douchebag” roll… but NOT step on people’s toes or rely on “untouchable words”. he’s actually smart AND entertaining.

    it can be done. it worries me that the beer-drinking college guys who watch her, may not actually get “the context”.

  • parisinla

    ugh… can we not be so hypocritical to blast sarah and run her ads? thanks.

  • Wolfi

    @Dawster: do GAY beer drinking college boys get her ‘context’ or not? ;-)

  • SeaFlood

    I agree with Dawster… (… which I tend to a lot, I notice…) she is SO not funny. Not edgy. Not interesting. There are some people who like her who are “part” of the communities she sets to “make fun” (I think it’s more serious than that, personally) of and it just shows how many people are actually complicit with their oppression. *shrugs* I didn’t need Silverman to know that some people are really ashamed of who they are, think who they are is inferior in some way… self-hatred ain’t new. It ain’t the new funny.

  • Jordan

    Sarah Silverman is the definitely not homophobic. She makes fun of everyone equally, and isn’t afraid of what people think, and I respect that. People just need to lighten up and not over analyze everything.

    In fact, she’s refused to marry her long time boyfriend, Jimmy Kimmel until gay marriage is legal.

  • Ryan

    I don’t think many people who’v really watched her stuff would come up with that conclusion. Of course, a few people may, but really I bet most of them have only seen snippets of her jokes and didn’t get the point of them.

    She’s not either as funny or talented as Steven Colbert, but she’s not gunning for the same niche audience, either. People who like Steven Colbert are people who are interested in political humor, first and foremost. I’d say she’s more in tune with Dane-Cook esque audiences, except she mixes in some of these important ideas using her comedy, which isn’t something I’ve ever seen from Dane Cook.

  • ilnazhad

    I can’t believe Dawster said that Sarah Silverman is the type of girl who eats dirt to make everyone like her. She is satarizing the mind of a bigot. She is protesting for the rights of gays by refusing to get married under the current laws. She is doing this in an entertaning and original way. And even Queerty, a site that should think of her as an ally, is accusing her of being homophobic and saying that her jokes are a guilty pleasure. You are MAKING her eat dirt.
    Some other moron said that her show is for stupid people, but its the sitcoms that are for stupid people. Its the sitcoms that keep enforcing the stereotypes that hurt the gay community. Another even bigger moron said she targets the same type of audience as Dane Cook. Which is feeding her (and her fans) dirt with worms and Lerry Craig’s cum in it.

  • ilnazhad


  • ilnazhad

    *and a bunch of it’s instead of its

  • Alexa

    ilnazhad, queerty wasn’t accusing Sarah of being homophobic, they were asking if we think she is. If you read the headline, they actually say “we think not.”

    SeaFlood, I’m sorry that Sarah’s humor goes over your head and you misunderstand her intent. But just because you don’t think she’s funny (and I can definitely see why some people would think she’s too crude) doesn’t mean that people who do are homophobic or self loathing.

  • rjb

    Colbert tells his audience that something gay is a “threat” to American society probably about twice a week. Why is that satire funny but Sarah Silverman’s act homophobic? She has across the board been pro-gay. I think the problem lies in people not being smart enough to get it or believing that she doesn’t have the right to say it. There is something just a lil bit sexist going on.

  • ilnazhad

    Alexa- They say they “think” she is not, which is really half-ass. They point out they are unsure of their stance and want some feedback. Sarah is already getting a lot of crap from a lot of people. Queerty should support her.

  • SeaFlood

    Alexa, it isn’t that it goes over my head. I understand why people like you and others find her funny. Perhaps it’s just too low brow, anti-intellectual, anti-human for me.

    But really, she’s just. not. funny.

    And there are issues of self loathing going on. I mean, have we gotten to the place where we think we deserve it if we are bashed because we’re gay or of color?


  • Miss Understood

    The Sarah Silverman Program is the best thing on TV since Strangers With Candy. I think Sarah Silverman is amazing, even if she is a Jew.

  • vince

    she doesn’t tell racist jokes. she tells jokes about racism.

    similarly, she doesn’t tell homophobic jokes. she tells jokes about homophobia.

    has no one ever heard of transgressive humor? i wonder who, of the people with the opinion that silverman is just using shock humor for the sake of shock value, think (or thought…or whatever tense is appropriate) the same thing about Lenny Bruce? or George Carlin? or Richard Pryor?

  • djdavi

    What about Lisa Lampanelli? If you’re saying Ms. Silverman’s act is bigoted than Lisa’s is, and Lisa is great. It is just for humor, and when we as a community can’t take a joke, we need to seriously re-evaluate our thinking.

  • Chris

    Sarah is totally not homophobic. One of her best friends is a lesbian,, comedian Tig Notaro. She is just being fair by making fun of all different kinds of people including herself. I’m the webmaster for her website and I myself am homosexual. She’s very friendly with me. I actually get to meet her next week for the first time! woo hoo!

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