Oklahoma Lawmaker Uses the Term ‘Jew Me Down’ and Everybody Laughs, Because Oklahoma

According to this possibly accurate website, Jews compose 0.1 percent of Oklahoma’s population. The Tulsa World informs us that “neither the Oklahoma House nor the Senate has a Jewish member.” Let these two figures serve as the backdrop for the following video, in which Oklahoma lawmaker Dennis Johnson — the co-majority leader of the state house of representatives — casually drops the phrase “try to Jew me down” into a legislative debate. 

Informed about twenty seconds later that he just used the the term “Jew me down” — in public, in front of cameras, as opposed to in private, where he presumably uses it all the time (“For God’s sake, Martha, don’t Jew me on the mashed potatoes!”) — Johnson apologized in pretty much the most unapologetic way possible. 

Did I? All right. I apologize to the Jews,” he said, grinning as if he could not give less of a shit. “They’re good small businessmen as well. All right folks, let’s get back to this.”

The cackling of Johnson’s fellow legislators is by far the most remarkable part of the video. They should have been appalled. That’s how people are supposed to react when someone uses an anti-Semitic slur, or any kind of ethnic slur. But instead they found the whole thing hilarious. If it all sounds too familiar, that’s because it’s basically a scene ripped out of Borat:

Oklahoma Lawmaker Uses the Term ‘Jew Me Down’