The Nitty Gritty

But more than all of those I am an entertainer. I carry around a ukulele with me for the same reason a gangster carries a gun; better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it. Stage or sidewalk, Your Pal Pete shows are just where they happen.
Currently, I'm working on a musical, RagnaPOP(or she's got the bomb), set to premiere at this year's Capital Fringe Festival. I'm also working on music, comedy, and musical comedy; for kids and/or adults.
The fruit of these projects will be available on this site, so check back regularly!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Freedom of Speech, Just Watch What You Say!

We, as a nation, need to calm the fuck down! It seems like every other day someone says something that other people won't shut up about until something is done. I whole-heartedly support their choice not to STFU, the problem is they feel they're justified to bitch; citing the precedent of the last few things people wouldn't STFU about.

The latest: (please watch the point/counterpoint afterward too-I'm sorry I couldn't embed it, I will when it hits You Tube)

Kathy Griffin:her time on the J-list

This illustrates the problem with Our Twitchy Nation: It's a joke, not in the best taste, but a joke nonetheless. The best humor often is these days and I don't think that's a coincidence.

When people started becoming more politically correct around the beginning of the 90s, I thought it was great; I was still overburdened with the faith in humanity that working retail would eventually beat out of me. I couldn't have foreseen that instead of sensitivity for everybody, it would be sensitivity towards the person willing to go too far to prove their point.

The asshole in the video who got offended by Kathy-who has every right to be pissed at her, just like I do him- used his opportunity to reiterate some of the "controversial" things that caused the media shitstorms to fall in the past to justify his "double standard" argument. So why is this guy not going to get into the same trouble as those other people? Context. Kathy said Jesus had nothing to do with her award to parody nearly every other award winner that thanks Jesus or God in their acceptance speech; I'm amazed someone hadn't made that type of joke already. But that was her context, if she had made a similar joke about Moses or Mohammed-like the Catholic dude said- it wouldn't have made any sense.

So let's go through his points:
Was that remark more offensive than Don Imus'? I don't think so, humor is always at the expense of something and I like to believe Jesus can take a joke. But that doesn't matter, I thought what happened to Imus was dumb too. I thought what he said was ignorant, but he shouldn't have lost his job over it. What was suppose to be a wake-up call for how African-American women are treated in society ended up with a guy gets paid to say controversial things getting fired for saying something controversial.

More offensive than Michael Richards dropping the "n-bomb"? I thought the n-word part of his tirade was incidental to everything else offensive he said. That it made the great Paul Mooney-a close friend of his-stop using the n-word in his act, that's pretty significant.

More offensive than Isaiah Washington's "F-Bomb"? This is the where PC thing really started getting out of hand; Rehab for using the word "Fag"(remember-context!)?

This brings me to how ultimately damaging this truly is: If that was the only thing that Isaiah did wrong(reports vary) after everything that's happened since, do you think he likes Gays more now? Did you notice how quick the Catholic League guy on CNN dropped the N-word, now that he had the context to do it without incident? I've known many openly bigoted people in my life and not one ever came around when all of these controversies happened, it just made their feelings seem that much more justifiable.

This is by no means excusing true racism and bigotry, it's just that I feel there are other ways to approach it: Pick your battles carefully and realize that true sensitivity goes both ways. Another way being PC fucks up true forward movement in society it that it creates an atmosphere where no one can talk about anything for fear of offending someone. A some liberal friends of mine have identified themselves as "colorblind"; Which is pointless, like D.L Hughley once said, "If you don't see Black, then you don't see me."

This point goes beyond bigotry, into drug use and abuse, teen sex, abortion and nearly every other contentious thing we like to argue about. We have to be honest with ourselves about the realities we face and not try to force the world into a idealized version that simply cannot exist. Only then, will we,as a nation, take a fucking joke once and a while.

I feel like I must say this: Where do Catholics get off feeling oppressed over this? She didn't say anything about Catholics specifically and Hollywood couldn't hate Catholics more than a lot of ex-Catholics do.

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