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“That’s not funny. My brother has no arms or legs.” … That’s how a dear friend of mine would have responded.

It was back in the late 1970s when everyone still told rude ethnic, religious, disability, and gender jokes with abandon. He’d say, “That’s not funny, my brother’s (fill in the blank: black, Jewish, paralysed, gay, …)” It would stop everyone in their tracks. He was really heroic about it, too. Put himself right out there in some very uncomfortable situations. It was eye opening for me as a young adult who had grown up with parents that were forever telling just those kind of jokes.

Whenever I hear one of those jokes, I hope I am brave enough to channel Paul. Sometimes I succeed; sometimes I chicken out.

And FYI, you forgot one. The guy in the ditch? His name’s Phil.

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