Muslim comedians bash racism with jokes

Oct. 4, 2004 at 3:53 PM
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CHICAGO, Oct. 4 (UPI) -- Chicago comedian Azhar Usman, an American Muslim, has taken his act on the road in an attempt to bash stereotypes while making audiences laugh.

Usman, along with St. Louis comedian Azeem and Preacher Moss, writer for George Lopez, Damon Wayans and "Saturday Night Live's" Darrell Hammond, headline "Allah Made Me Funny: The Official Muslim Comedy Tour," at Zanie's Comedy Club in Chicago Monday and Tuesday, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

"A comedy show is not just a comedy show. There's a lot more going on there. In this country, it is comedians -- ethnic comedians -- who are at the forefront of, if you will, the civil rights movement because they're the ones that are pushing the envelope and pressing the issues to such a degree that eventually mainstream America begins to accept that holding these racist or stereotypical views is inappropriate, or is unacceptable, or is just absurd," Usman said.

The show, which kicked off five months ago in Washington, will head to Los Angeles after its Chicago stop.

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