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Comedy used to be the domain of rebels. Those who used to massage the line of what was acceptable–and sometimes cross it–in order to force us to think about ourselves and the human condition.
In the aftermath of the “Slap Heard Round the World”—Will Smiths’ bitch-slapping of comedian Chris Rock on the internationally-watched Oscar stage last year–some still argue that violence is justified against those whose jokes don’t hit that mark.
Writes The Root’s Candace McDuffie:
It’s been one year since the world watched Will Smith slap the taste out of Chris Rock’s mouth during the Oscars. The shocking moment—which many people assumed was part of a premeditated skit—sent shockwaves through Hollywood.
Not only did people overwhelmingly sympathize with Rock, but they also painted Smith as a dangerously violent Black man with an anger problem.
However, looking at the infamous moment a year later, many have come to understand why Smith hit Rock.
It’s not about condoning violence, but words—especially ones that make Black women the punchline—should have consequences.
There is no other interpretation to be taken from this—except that it’s a full-on endorsement of violence against those whose comedy might offend your senses. You can make fun of all the old guys you want, but joke about females of color and expect to get your a*** kicked.
Because you deserve it:
The Root has examined the most notorious moment in the history of the Oscars quite extensively, but ultimately talk sh*t, get hit is a very real thing—and Rock deserved to find that out the hard way. [Emphasis mine.]
This is extremely dangerous, anarchic stuff wrapped up in “academic” prose. It’s especially alarming to be inflaming passions when there are real-world dangers:
Dave Chappelle just got attacked on stage
— Hoodville (@Hoodville_) May 4, 2022
Among comedians, both David Chappelle’s and Chris Rock’s brilliance is their ability to poke fun at truths and expose human foibles regardless of race, religion, or gender, like so many of their forebears—Lenny Bruce, Sam Kinison, Richard Pryor, or modern day’s Ricky Gervais—and so many other legends.
This writer certainly has the credentials:
Candace McDuffie is the Senior Writer at The Root who focuses on the intersection of race, gender and entertainment. Her written work has been featured on digital platforms such as: Rolling Stone, MTV, Forbes, Grammy.com, Spotify, PAPER, SPIN, Newsweek, Entertainment Weekly, Glamour, Vibe, Tidal, Marie Claire, Paste, Essence and The Boston Globe.
In other words, she’s worked for about every liberal, race-baiting outlet around, so it’s ok if she calls for violence against those with who she disagrees with. If she didn’t have an “intersection of race, gender and entertainment” background, she would be roundly criticized as the agitating radical that she is.
Candice McDuffie must be on that Heisenberg because I can’t recall this ever being a take ever. Ever. Ever. pic.twitter.com/zRyphF1lx9
— Big Van Vega (TheCrypt) (@vegathechosen) June 4, 2022
If a conservative said something like this, the mainstream media would be on it faster than Jerry Nadler could chase down a jelly donut. Merrick Garland’s Department of Justice would be hauling off the dangerous QAnon ultra-MAGA insurrectionist who said it and making sure he never saw the light of day again.
Do you hear that sound? Crickets.
it’s appalling that someone would condone violence like this, and it’s equally appalling that the people who are constantly screaming about such things have suddenly lost their voices.
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