Well, here’s one way you can deal with racist jokes at work:
My recommendation? Play dumb. Put on a bewildered expression, act as if you don’t understand the joke, and ask your co-worker to explain it to you. He will not be able to explain why the joke is funny without evoking a racist stereotype. You can then question the veracity of this stereotype, thus pointing out the racism of the joke, without being confrontational and without humiliating your co-worker. Racist jokes rely on an unspoken, shared knowledge of racist stereotypes. Without the stereotypes, there is no humor.
My advice really is to do the above it’s a co-worker you are also a good friend of. If he or she is not, maybe even your boss, then I suggest you get a lawyer real quick and you should be redeemed with enough money to not work for couple years. Hey, someone gotta pay up for that bad mouth, it better be the CEO than your Just-Over-Broke co-worker. I might be harsh here but come on, we are in twentieth century, that should NEVER happen. As a person who learned English as second language and an immigrant from Asia, racist jokes can sometimes really be annoying as hell. It only shows how ignorant that person is, it’s in fact not funny at all.
Yes, “sue the fu(k out of the company” for hiring people like that in the first place. If they really want to say something, they can say it behind everyone’s back in their livingroom, where no one will hear them. Now that, I have nothing against, this is a free country and we still have KKK. As long as all that stuff is locked up tightly in a closet somewhere, we will have better people.
Most companies will be scared out their numb-nuts since getting sued for something like that as it will forever tarnish the company’s image. (Now think about that headline that goes, “XXX company gets sued for hiring racist people”) Same thing goes for sexual orientation, well, you know the American drill if you did go to school after 1960s.
In my experience having jobs in different fields, I do find that most American people in general do not make racist jokes with their co-workers and yes, I think diversity in your workplace also helps.
Most workplaces I believe are pretty diverse these days but if you happen to work in one of “those” weird places, it’s time to move on to a better, diverse city like San Francisco, New York, etc…etc…
Find the right job first, then you won’t have to deal with dumb people. If you have the wrong job, get out pleeez! (and get your money too for sheezy, life is too hard and you deserve it)