Dick Gregory R.I.P.

A great comedian who gave it all up to fight for civil rights. Saw him a few years ago at Lehman College with old-timers like Bill Dana, Shelley Berman & Irwin Corey. As funny as they were–and they were funny–Mr. Gregory stole the show with his diabolical insights into modern-day politics and race relations. My fave Dick Gregory rejoinder?  Okay, here’s the context: Gregory had fought to make sure he could sit on the couch next to Jack Paar when the latter was hosting The Tonight Show. (Paar would have Black comics do their stand-up but never invited them over to sit next to him and continue the chat.) They were chatting–very very very lightly–about race relations when Paar– who was trying to change the subject–asked Gregory what kind of car he drove. A nanosecond later came Gregory’s answer which was delivered coolly with a smidgen of condescension: “A Lincoln, of course.”

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