On Louis CK’s ‘Hasidic Cum Tissues’ Routine


A facebook friend recently cued me in to a website that collected things Louis CK has said about Jews.   Included in the archived videos are a few clips: a clip where Louis CK plays on many different dialects and how speech indicates different kinds of sick lifestyles (the Jewish dialect amongst them), a video on rape where he goes so far as to say, in an aside, that Jews should be raped and follows “did I say that?”; it also includes a clip on Jewish girls (which was removed from Youtube), the “Goodbye Jews” clip that I discussed in the last blog entry on Louis CK, and a clip entitled “Hasidic Cum Tissues” (which was also removed from Youtube).

Regarding this clip, the webpage cites Louis CK as saying:

And the weird detail she told me is that [the Hasidic clients of the dominatrix] always had to take their sperm home with them in a tissue, because that was in their religion that they couldn’t leave their bodily fluids behind. So somehow God’s watching a dominatrix shit in your mouth, and he’s like “Well as long as you take your cum home, it’s fine.” 

I was really curious about this video clip as its title and the claim were so bizarre.  I wanted to hear it and take note not just of this but of other parts of the clip that would show me Louis CK’s ways of relating to Jewish things.   (Moreover, I am familiar with Jewish customs (minhagim) and laws (halacha) and I had never heard of such a thing as “cum tissues” let alone heard of Hasidim who needed to make sure all semen was put in tissues.)

From the Louis CK page, we learn that the clip was removed by Youtube.  Nonetheless, I wondered if it may have been renamed.  It was.  And it was simply filed under the Opie and Anthony Show.   As their Wiki page points out, Opie (Greg “Opie” Hughes) and Anthony (Cumia) had a show since 1995 and that went on to 2002.  They had a hiatus and went onto XM Satellite Radio in 2006.  The show, over the years, has been host to many comedians including Louis CK.  The energy in and around the show is anxious and highly charged – much like The Howard Stern Show.  The language is heavy and very vulgar. And like Stern, they often disregard political correctness and speak what is on their minds.  And sometimes that can get very risky.

This clip in particular is very vulgar and you may not want to hear or see my reading of it as the clip that I address portrays some Hasidic Jews in a very negative even anti-Semitic fashion.  I found many details that were not mentioned by the person who runs the website or anyone on the web for that matter.  I have noted them below. Read and listen at your own risk.

In this clip – show #19 -they had Louis CK as a guest.  29:27 in Louis CK begins telling a joke about a Dominatrix, Hasidim, and “cum tissues.”  His friend’s wife was a Dominatrix and she had Hasidim as clients.

After much banter about this Dominatrix and his friend, he returns (at 31:17) to the joke and brings in the Hasidim and the tissues.  He describes the relationship of the Hasidim to the Dominatrix and points out that they were rude to her before the transaction.  In an attempt to explain why they are rude, Louis CK  notes than anybody “outside” their community is deemed “an outsider.”  Furthermore,  “that’s the way the culture is….its a closed society…I’m trying to be nice about it…Fucking Jews!”(Nervous laughter.)

After saying this, Opie and Anthony come to the rescue and say that while he is right about the Hasidim being a closed society, it woukd be wrong to say that all Hasidim are the same.  Yet, they say Hasidim are “mysterious.”  Louis CK then comes in and talks about some “good” Hasidim he has met at B & H Photo in Manhattan.  He imitates one of the Hasidim who works behind the counter and notes that some can be rude, there, while others “can be nice.”

Returning to the story, and bringing to bear on us how Louis CK and the Dominatrix share a negative attitude towards “them,” he notes that “these Jews were rude to her….Going to the dominatrix to have their dicks whipped is not in the Talmud.”

Louis CK points out, without wincing, that “when she was beating them, she said they were the only clients she ever hit with spite.” Finding her spite (and her beating of the Hasidim) to be justifiable, he notes that the Hasidim had “crossed the line.”  In other words, they deserved a cruel beating.

After justifying her cruel (as opposed to “kind,” normal) whipping, Louis CK notes that she said that she “used to crucify them….and inside, when she was hitting them, she thought ‘You Fucking Jew!’”

“And then the weird detail she told me came when she told me that they had to put their sperm in a tissue…they had to take their sperm home with them.”  CK, an anthropologist from Mars, explains that they cannot leave any fluids lying around.  He goes on to state what he says as Jewish blindness and hypocrisy: “somehow, God’s watching a dominatrix shit in your mouth…and everything will be alright if you take your cum home.”  Following Louis CK’s  judgment, they all jokingly play out the reasons why God would want them to do this.  And Louis CK finishes the foray by saying that all be well if the Hasid can put the “cum tissue in the cigar box under his wife’s shawl.”

Opie then gets going and talks about how he heard of a “tranny” who would make the Hasidim shower because they smelled so bad.  All of the anti-Semitic stuff starts coming here and then a phone-call comes in that is directed at these Hasidim.

The caller who is apparently a cop confirms this claim. And even calls them “filthy, filthy animals.”  Then he says not all of them “…a couple of them.”

What is so disturbing about all of this is not simply the negative anti-Semitic descriptions, but the fact that the topic is simply passed by.  After the cop hangs up, they simply talk about other things.

They feel no need to reflect on what they said about the “dirty Hasidim.”  There is no need to reflect on how odd it is that Louis CK thought of their cruel (as opposed to kind) “beating” as justified.  Here we need to ask ourselves if Louis CK (and the whole crew) went too far.

And although they are laughing, are we?  What would it mean if we were to laugh along with all of them about those “dirty Jews?”  Is this routine about “Hasidic Cum Tissues” funny or just disturbing?

4 thoughts on “On Louis CK’s ‘Hasidic Cum Tissues’ Routine

  1. I don’t think they were being anti semetic. The commentary was on a certain group of people who are haughty enough to look down on people for being morally inferior to them while hypocritically engaging in acts that, defined by the morality they subjugate themselves to, are wrong and sinful. Then they have the audacity to declare they’re guilt-free through some mis-defined loophole which, to a person sound of logic and thinking ability would call BS on. Those said people happened to be hasidic Jews. Why so touchy about the jewy part?

    • I’m not saying they were. My question was regarding Louis CK, mainly. There is a history of anti-Semitic Hasidic jokes out there. And the point is not whether or not it was “true” so much as what this story – like so many others – connotes. Listen to negativity that is heaped on them which basically says, to be sure, that they “deserved” the beating. And that she “enjoyed” it. It was vengeful. This stuff travels the fine line of anti-Semitism. I’m not “touchy” so much as concerned with where to draw the line. After all, I am Jewish and I know what anti-Semitism is.

      • Granted, Jewish people have been the brunt of a lot of jokes, even outside of Mr. CK’s catalog. This mainly stems from the fact that it has high shock value. It’s like if I used the word ‘nigger’. Just reading ‘nigger’ probably just made some readers reel. That’s because of the history that word has. It sends people into a dark and uncomfortable place. Similarly, when people make Jew jokes, a lot of the laugh comes from facing an uncomfortable topic and releasing tension. That’s the point of Mr. CK’s jokes, which is why he likes to utter the words “Fucking Jews” a lot (See ‘Hilarious’ performance – 2008). He’s not antisemitic, it’s just that he uses ‘Jew’ a lot as a detail to evoke a visceral reaction.

        The detail of the client being a Hasidic Jew in this story is simply a detail. It would probably be ‘safer’ not to mention that he was a Hasidic Jew, but it would have confused people when the detail of the “cum tissues” came up. Questions like “Why does he care if God cares about cum all over the floor that he has to strictly clean it up and take it with him? Is this some sort of specific religion?” would have been raised. What I’m saying is if it wasn’t a Hasidic Jew but an Evangelical Christian who acted in the same way as said Hasidic Jew, then Louis C.K.’s reaction would have been the same. Granted the dialogue did go to a tangent that bordered on antisemitic, but obviously the main point transcended the issue of prejudice and honed in on hypocrisy.

        The “Deserved Beating” that you refer to; if you looked at it from the Dominatrix’s perspective, If there was a client (not particularly jewy) who’s looking down at her for being a dominatrix, but then hypocritically employs her for her services to him, don’t you think that beating would feel cathartic to her for the injustice she just experienced from such a client? That is what’s meant when the dominatrix “enjoyed” it and that it was “deserved”. To simplify, it’s like going to a restaurant, eating a 4 course meal for a party of 6, running the waiter ragged, then tipping him with a big middle finger for being a waiter and working-class right before making a big deal about how high of a roller you were. How would you feel if you were the waiter? I’d imagine spiteful.

        The moral of the story raised here is about the hypocrisy that exists in society. I feel that Louis CK qualified his statement and that it being about Hasidim and Jews was simply a trivial detail that was provided for just a little shock and awe.

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