Even Cheney Fans Think It’s Too Soon to Laugh About Waterboarding

Photo: Ben Sklar/2011 Getty Images

At a Dick Cheney roast, you'd expect people to yuk it up about heart transplants, shooting friends in the face, and President Obama's alleged incompetency. While those topics were certainly covered at the roast co-hosted by Rupert Murdoch and sponsored by the conservative magazine Commentary on Monday night, even some attending the festivities honoring the former vice president were taken aback by the rampant torture humor. "There were some waterboarding jokes that were really tasteless," a guest tells BuzzFeed. "I can see the case for enhanced interrogation techniques after Sept. 11 but I can’t really endorse sitting there drinking wine and fancy dinner at the Plaza laughing uproariously about it."

The culprits include former Sen. Joe Lieberman, who “said something to the effect that it’s nice that we’re all here at the Plaza instead of in cages after some war crimes trial," and the vice president himself – though his joke, which he attributed to Jay Leno, has so many layers of Cheney, we're not entirely sure what's going on. Per BuzzFeed:

It centered on a one-shot antelope hunting contest in Wyoming in which the loser had to dance with an Indian squaw. Cheney’s shot got caught in the barrel, producing a dispute over whether it counted as a hit or a miss — and Leno, according to Cheney, joked that Cheney wanted to go catch the animal with his bare hands and waterboard it.

The former VP does seem like a very roastable guy, but someone should have realized that Jon Stewart already used up most of the good Cheney jokes during the Bush years.