In this month’s newsletter: An off-color joke

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This story has been corrected. For the full correction see below.

A joke disparaging several racial and ethnic minorities was included in a Keizer neighborhood newsletter.

More than 600 families call the exclusive McNary Estates home. The independent monthly newsletter serving it is mostly filled with the latest news about the golf course, new regulations, meeting minutes and photos from events held at the McNary Golf Club, along with the occasional joke or anecdote.

In the April edition, a story with no byline describes ethnic and racial minorities as gang members and abusers of government welfare programs, while comparing their work ethic disfavorably with that of white people.

The newsletter’s editor, Don Conat, said he “made a mistake on that one. Should have never put that in there.”

He said he was simply trying to fill holes in his newsletter, and frequently uses jokes from the Internet to do so.

One problem is, according to a leading website dedicated to bursting mythical bubbles, is that the anecdote is not true. According to snopes.com, the story started getting around on the Internet in 2008, and similar versions of this tale have taken place in New Jersey and London.

Mayor Lore Christopher contributes a monthly column, and a fair amount of advertising appears in its pages.

“Terrible,” Christopher said. “You can’t be saying those things. Those folks are our neighbors and friends.”

- Jason Cox

Correction: The newsletter is produced via an independent non-profit and is separate from the McNary Estates Homeowners Association.

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