Mesa County Commissioner Cody Davis uses offensive term in public hearing about the county budget


To be fair, Mesa County Commissioner Cody Davis (R) probably had no idea what he was saying when he said it, but it was highly offensive.

23 minutes or so into the Commissioners’ meeting on December 12, 2023 to approve the annual budget (video), Commissioner Davis discusses how difficult it is for him to understand the budgeting process and said,

“Mongoloid” is an offensive term used to refer to people with Down Syndrome

“If I didn’t have help sometimes, reading this budget I’d feel like a knuckle-dragging Mongoloid.”

He was apparently unaware that “knuckle-dragging Mongoloid” is a highly offensive term.

The term “Mongoloid” for a long time was a pejorative term used to refer to people affected by Down Syndrome. It is also a racist term used to refer to people of Asian descent.

Commissioner Davis evidently was trying to express that he felt unintelligent and uneducated when it came to the county’s budgeting process. He probably meant to say something like he felt like “a neanderthal,” which, when spelled with a lower case “n” means a person who is rude or not very smart, a cretin or a dolt, or  “uncivilized, unintelligent or uncouth person.”

Someone who watched the video pointed out Commissioner Davis’ eyebrow-raising use of the offensive phrase.

It’s hard to know how many more Mesa County citizens saw it and were offended by it.

If he reads this, maybe Commissioner Davis will avoid using this phrase in the future, and maybe, if he apologizes, people can forgive him for being uneducated about the use of it.


  18 comments for “Mesa County Commissioner Cody Davis uses offensive term in public hearing about the county budget

  1. It is my understanding that they were built to adapt to their climate, region and altitudes, as compared, for an example, to the very tall thin ‘drawn to the sun’ Africans in Africa. Weather conditions determine a dialect like those in Northern Minnesota, there is a reason from the cold that it was formed over time. We are like the animals, adapting to the regions and seasons. Aren’t we glad we are NOT all the same?!?

  2. Joe Biden on January 31, 2007 referring to Barack Obama.

    “I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man.”

    This is my favorite Biden gaffe but by no means the only one…and I don’t think he ever apologized or saw anything wrong with it.

    • He spoke the genuine truth. Looks like you are looking for trouble trouble trouble every where you want. There is nothing offensive , compared to “knuckle head” Mongoloid , which isn’t praise speaking at all.

  3. The greatest offense is that an ignoramus like Cody ever got elected County Commissioner let alone granted a microphone to spout his unfiltered stream of unconsciousness. The fact that he occasionally drops racial epithets into his public speaking, well that’s not really much a surprise is it? His whole wide-eyed, brow-less, and balding neckbeard look doesn’t exactly paint the picture of a real educated orator either. So the poor word choice is far from shocking, but using it as a preface to admit incompetence understanding things that are a core responsibility to the CC role is the real admission here. Because he’s also saying the quiet part loud….in that the larger concern should be his role in the silent coup of seizing authority over once-independent county budgets (Health Dept) and then boisteroisly admit to being the kind of doltish moron that also desperately needs help understanding them. He may also be admitting his alibi upon the discovery of any future financial crimes or public spending improprieties; straight from the right-wing playbook of claiming youkel ignorance then blame “the experts” for leading them astray.

    But go on, get mired in the high-minded debate over semantics and entomology of words.

  4. I tend to associate this casual racism with “polite” Christian society, where the response is typically “I know them, they’re a good person,” or “they didn’t mean it like that”.

    A few years ago the Art Center displayed an offensive work of a monkey playing the blues. Given the history of Blues as an African American art form and the racist trope of African Americans as primates, I was surprised it was even displayed. But the curator’s response was “He [the artist] didn’t mean it like that, he’s not racist, yada yada yada…” Doesn’t change that it’s depicting a long-standing racist trope that shouldn’t have been displayed at the Art Center in the first place.

    • Evolution is what it is. To shut your brain to it is not moving forward at all, the galaxy expands! We must accept that and follow suit.
      They say the same things about serial killers and wife beaters. People hide from behind their masks.

      • Justice, you have a profound misunderstanding of any accepted definition of evolution, be it scientific, biological, or metaphysical. Go back and reread On the Origin of Species. This time, do it slowly, out loud, and with the help of a professor not employed by Liberty, Hillsdale, or Oral Roberts. That or get back to the kid’s table.

        • People hide behind their masks. True story.
          They say the same nice things about serial killers and female abusers. True Story. Don’t need your resources to prove those points.
          The Universe expands, true story.

  5. That is about par for this town. I was at an important meeting in the KAFM room , with what was the Colorado Congress back then. I specifically remember one of the illustrious spoke-person, a respected admired citizen all around, called out “let’s Jew them down”, yes she handled the budget. I could not believe hearing it. Some people are not mindful of saying this kind of comment especially at a public event.

    • I have to admit, having a family line full of racists, I’ve heard the term growing up, but I just thought they were saying (and mispronouncing) “chew them down”; luckily, I never used it, because both versions sounded incredibly stupid to me. I wasn’t until I heard it used in front of a Jewish co-worker and saw his disappointed face that it suddenly registered to me what my relatives had been saying all along.

  6. I’m sure I said that a lot as a kid, so I wont cast a stone, but hopefully he will appreciate learning what it meant and regret saying it – if we all learn from our mistakes, that’s a good thing!

    • As kids, whenever we said offensive words like that the parents would correct us immediately. After I once said “We got gypped,” my mom informed me that word was derogatory towards gypsies, which I didn’t know. On a road trip, my brother and I were saying the names of the models of cars we saw on the road to pass the time, and my mom informed us our pronunciation of “Prix” in “Grand Prix” was actually slang for “penis,” and a bad word, which I also didn’t know. As an adult in the 1990s my husband and I were at a title company closing on a piece of property when our realtor made a comment about how he got “Jewed down” on a sale. My husband and I had to tell him were were Jewish and that phrase was offensive towards Jews. People occasionally say offensive things like that because somehow they made it all the way to adulthood without ever having had the benefit of someone around them knowing these words were offensive and cluing them in about it. That’s probably the case with Cody. I can’t imagine he’d sit up there and intentionally say, on camera to the whole county, something that was so offensive towards Asian people and people with Down Syndrome. If he acknowledges the mistake, we’ll know he didn’t intend to be thoughtless or cruel. We’ll just have to see.

  7. Recent research shows that Neanderthals were given a bad name because they didn’t look like white people. They were apparently a lot more intelligent than previously thought and a lot more accomplished. So using that term to denote stupid, knuckle dragging people is also offensive.

    • I would like to know the source of your information, please?. Are you familiar with the work of David Graeber and David Wengrow? I’d have to challenge that Neanderthals were anything but “white.” In fact, I would suggest that as Africans expanded into Eurasia they encountered both Neanderthals and Denisovans.

    • It is my understanding that they were built to adapt to their climate, region and altitudes, as compared, for an example, to the very tall thin ‘drawn to the sun’ Africans in Africa. Weather conditions determine a dialect like those in Northern Minnesota, there is a reason from the cold that it was formed over time. We are like the animals, adapting to the regions and seasons. Aren’t we glad we are NOT all the same?!?

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