Is the Ying Tong Song considered offensive?

Back in the 50s in Britain there was a great comedic troupe called the Goons, consisting of Spike Milligan, Peter Sellers, and Harry Secombe.

One of their big hits was a silly song called the Ying Tong Song, which is basically just a bunch of rubbish sung in silly voices. It was a big hit in the UK, and was even covered by the muppets in the US.

I showed it to my brother today and he says it is really offensive, that it could be construed as racist toward people of Asian heritage. I say it’s just gibberish, and that the only thing offensive about it is that he automatically assigned gibberish to a particular culture.

So, am I out of the loop and this song really is offensive, or is my brother just overly sensitive or possibly racist?

The Ying Tong Song, if you don’t already know it, is here:…

3 answers by real people - Is the Ying Tong Song considered offensive?

  • 1 month ago

    im half asian & I wasn’t offended but it was dumb

  • cogliano
    5 days ago

    Ying Tong Song

  • Nosmo King
    4 days ago

    No, it’s just a likeable daft song. It doesn’t really mean anything, so how can it be offensive?

One thought on “Is the Ying Tong Song considered offensive?

  1. The Ying Tong Song is overtly colonialist. In the Cantonese dialect ‘Ying Tong Yiddle I Po’ can be roughly translated into ‘The English Collective should be loved dearly’. It is a swipe at the native Hong Kong people by their colonial overlords during the 1841 to 1997 years of British rule. The song is of a white aristocrat girl chastising her put upon local servant for not keep up to her standard. Spike Milligan, the writer of this song, born in British India and well known for his portrayal of brownface, knew what he was writing but the cleverness of Milligan and the Goons hide this as a comedic take when it was released to an unsuspecting and naive audience. You really won’t hear any chinese person sing the Ying Tong Song on their own accord.

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