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Jackie Mason: Obama's a "Schwartza"

3/15/2009 2:35 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Jackie MasonComedian Jackie Mason used what some say is a racial epithet in describing President Barack Obama during his act Thursday night, infuriating at least several people in the crowd.

During a performance at Feinstein's at Loews Regency in NYC, Mason referred to Obama as a "schwartza" -- some say it's equivalent to the "N" word -- others say it's just part of the Yiddish culture and a literal translation of the word "Black."

We're told one person walked out fuming, "He's more offensive to the Jews than Madoff tonight."

We spoke with Mason by phone a few minutes ago, and he was outraged at the criticism, saying, "I'm not going to defend myself. Chris Rock has told a lot more jokes about whites than I have against Blacks. What about the demeaning words Blacks say about Jews?"

Mason added, "If it's a racist society, the white people are the ones being persecuted because they have to defend themselves." Mason called people like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson "professional racists."

Mason added, "I'm an old Jew. I was raised in a Jewish family where 'schwartza' was used. It's not a demeaning word and I'm not going to defend myself."

And there was this parting shot: "I'm more talented than Oprah Winfrey and look at how much she makes. I can't even make a living."

UPDATE:
Rev. Al Sharpton just sent us this statement:

"At this stage in Jackie's life and career he should get our prayers more than our responses. It is sad that maybe he forgot he used the same term against Mayor David Dinkins when he was elected the first African-American Mayor of New York City and got in trouble for it. As for him attacking me, maybe he forgot that he has had me on his TV show and has taken me to dinner and commended me for forgiving a white male who tried to kill me by stabbing me while I was leading a non-violent march. I'm sure Jackie just forgot."

740 COMMENTS

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46.

Linda Mott    

Jacki should know what it means, he studied to be a Rabbi. I know people that worked for him and they said they never heard any bigotry from him.

1858 days ago
47.

cmcolin    

Jackie Mason? Seriously, TMZ? Jackie fing Mason? Are we going to be reporting on all the juicy Phyllis Diller gossip, too?

1858 days ago
48.

Rob    

And Jackie Mason is a despicable has been that has always had a foul mouth. When a Jew exposes bigoted stupidity and ignorance like this it is an indication that it is all he has to get attention. How can anyone that refused to acknowledge their own child be critical of someone's color. It's this type of JEW that embarrasses me to be one.

He is trash!

1858 days ago
49.

Glenn    

Go, Jackie! I'm so sick of the whiny black race trying to use this pity party every time someone says something that offends them. Get over it! And if you must call yourself African-American, then leave the U.S. because you're not a true American. If that's the case, I guess that makes me an Irish-Scottish American, yet I've never been there. Bet you African-Americans have never lived in Africa, either. If you had, your sorry butts would realize how lucky you've got it in the U.S.

1858 days ago
50.

richards    

Where is the love? schvartza is not a pejorative, just an adjective.

1858 days ago
51.

Jolie54    

African american people, please, please, please. Stop looking to cause trouble amongst the Jews and blacks. There is no need for Jackie Mason to apologize about anything cuz it's true that when african american comedian cuts up a white person for a few laughs, nobody complains or cries about it. Yet, when a black person is made fun of or whatever, right away they are quick to cry "racism", give me a friggin break y'all. I am Puerto Rican and I've also been abused verbally and physically by blacks and no one is out there fighting for my rights, however, Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson are ready to march and cause havoc when a black person feels they have been discriminated again. GET A LIFE and stop being such cry babies. I'm sick and tired of all of yous always crying racism when YOU are the racist ones.

1858 days ago
52.

samy    

I totally agree about his comments about Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson being professional racists, if they feel that anyone makes a racist comment, they are the first people to point it out, and then they sit there and attack the person by talking alot of crap. And this last part really cracks me up, when people like Richards and whomever want to apologize to the "black community" they go to those two to beg and grovel for forgiveness, like they speak for all the blacks out there!! Its ridiculous how much some ethnicities play the race card so often that by now, it doesn't really mean much, its kind of annoying. We have Black History MONTH! A entire month dedicated to learning about Blacks, and they have very prominent status in the USA and still they cry over some little old jewish comedians comment calling them a name that they dont even know what it means but of course, because hes has light skin he must be saying something offensive and racist. Seriously, at one point all races were treated terrible and terrible things were done to them, but as far as I know, not all of them live and cling to those past mistreatments and try to validate themselves by not gaining some inner strength from it, and moving on to be better than before.

1858 days ago
53.

yessir    

"Bet you African-Americans have never lived in Africa, either. If you had, your sorry butts would realize how lucky you've got it in the U.S."

Why would they want to? Have you seen what Europe and America have done to Africa? damn there destroyed it. They're lucky there homeland was desecrated and they were forcefully taken to a country that treats them as second class citizens?

1858 days ago
54.

frankiestage    

"I'm more talented than Oprah Winfrey and look at how much she makes. I can't even make a living." huh? WTF does that have to do with anything?

1858 days ago
55.

UNBELIEVABLE    

37. This guy is clearly anold racist. Jesse Jackson is a "Professional racist"? What was the point of even saying something as stupid as that? Racism is not just about saying obviously offensive things but the way you carry yourself and address people of other races. Being an old guy doesn't mean that you're excused for it. He's racist. He might not burn crosses but he's clearly got some bigot in him

Posted at 2:45PM on Mar 15th 2009 by Dorian

All this man said was black. Big Deal.

And Jessie Jackass and Al Sleazball are professional racists. Jessie even admitted he spit in white people's soup.

If any white person said or done what Jackass and Sleazball they would have had to move out of the country. Why are these 2 slime balls never called on their racist acts or remarks. These 2 are racist and biggots and he called them on. Good for him.

1858 days ago
56.

jay    

if you look up the word on urban dictionary .com you'll see that there are two meanings of this word. one of them is used just for saying something like "he's a schwartza" a black man. The other was used by american jews to call a black person the "n" word without them knowing. so really we know cant in which way he was using the word. whether it was racism or not is really unknown, i think people should acknowledge the fact that something was said and it may or may not have been a racist remark. stop focusing on the fact that black comedians say "all kinds a bad things about white people" because all that is a trying to justify something that was or could have been wrong. If we've learned anything from childhood its that just because someone says or does something doesn't mean its okay for you to push the envelope and say or do somthing.

1858 days ago
57.

Lyonel    

Just another way to keep the black man down!!!!

1858 days ago
58.

Lyonel    

Keeping my brothers in place....keeping the black man down!!!!

1858 days ago
59.

Bex    

Good for him! Nobody can say anything, anymore without some idiot demanding they apologize! Stand your ground, Jackie and set an example for freedom of speech! No apologies and no retractions!

1858 days ago
60.

RedBird    

WOW it's kind of scary to know ignorant hateful people like you exist in 2009. First off you are speaking of african americans in a racist and stereotypical way, i.e. they all think and behave the same way.do white people all think and behave the same way? of course not. why do you characterize african americans that way then? what's wrong with you.

Posted at 3:04PM on Mar 15th 2009 by Yessir

WOW it's kind of scare to know ignorant, naive people like you exist in 2009. First off I don't speak for white people because I'm not white. Second of all I grew up in a black neighborhood and went to a black high school and I can say without a doubt that blacks are extremely racist against non-blacks and against blacks who are too light or too dark in their opinion. Of course that doesn't mean EVERY SINGLE black....get real...do you really need to have everything spelled out for you?

This is reality. You can deny it all you want and live in your fantasy world where only whites are racist and blacks are flawless but that doesn't make it true.

Oh and call me racist all you want. I could really not care less because it's the typical defense of people who can't face reality.

1858 days ago
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