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Buzz Bissinger On Some Jeremy Lin Jokes: ‘Doesn’t Rise To Level Of Calling Him A Gook Or A Kike’

In a discussion about the allegedly racially insensitive media incidents involving Jeremy Lin on CNN’s Reliable Sources, Vanity Fair/Daily Beast columnist Buzz Bissinger said he wasn’t offended by that much of it. “‘Chink in the armor‘ is definitely offensive,” Bissinger observed. “I will not say what the penalty should or should not be. It’s hard to believe it got in but ESPN does this all the time. They do offensive things and then try to backtrack. I think some of the other stuff, frankly, is not that big a deal. The fortune cookie thing didn’t bother me…I don’t think it rises to the level of calling him a gook or a kike. People are having fun with it.”

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Bissinger disputed that there was anything offensive about racial stereotyping made at Lin’s expense. “I made a spoof of it,” he added. “I said what I wrote was going to be offensive. It probably was. It was about Michael Vick and Jeremy Lin opening a restaurant together. You know, this stuff is going to happen, and I think in a sense we have to get over it. It certainly hasn’t hindered Jeremy Lin’s popularity.”

Kurtz did not directly address Bissinger’s use of derogatory terms and moved on in the discussion.

Watch below via CNN:

(h/t Deadspin)

Howard Kurtz responded to our original headline which did not include the word ‘Some’:

I’ve got to blow the whistle on a misleading headline. Buzz Bissinger didn’t say that “Jeremy Lin Jokes” don’t rise to the level of those other ethnic slurs, because that indicates he’s defending all the jokes, including the worst stuff. As your own story points out, in his interview with me on Reliable Sources, Buzz said ESPN’s “Chink” headline was “definitely offensive” and criticized the network for it. He said some other jokes, including the fortune cookie one, were “not that big a deal.” In a story that dealt in part with a horrible headline that prompted ESPN to fire the staffer involved, your own headline-writer should have been more careful.

Editor’s note: This post has been edited since it’s original posting – Jon Nicosia

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