Back in 2015, Jerry Seinfeld revealed that he won’t do any shows at colleges anymore. Their political correctness had gotten so out of control that it became borderline dangerous to tell a joke on some campuses, and Seinfeld, one of America’s most famous comedians, was warned away from them by fellow comedians.
“I don’t play colleges, but I hear a lot of people tell me, don’t go near colleges,” he said according to E!. “They’re so P.C.”
Six years later, these college kids that wouldn’t allow jokes on their campus graduated, went out into the workforce and began enforcing their political correctness on society in general. Soon, it became dangerous for many comedians to tell jokes at all. You never knew when something you considered innocuous would result in cancelation because you offended or insulted some protected group on the left.
If you were a comedian, you had to tell jokes that fell into a certain category. Jokes about men, white people, or vulgar references to your vagina were perfectly okay. Make even one small joke about gays, transgendered people, black people, etc., and your career was over.
Comedy had effectively been outlawed. Only a few comics dared to speak openly about taboo topics, and they almost welcomed the permanently outraged to make a move against them. Doing so would only boost their careers, and their business model worked out. For everyone else, however, they were too scared to move.
That is, until Dave Chappelle.
Chapelle didn’t care about the outrage and seemed to even laugh it off. After his first, his “Sticks and Stones” special ruffled feathers on the left in general, even prompting critics to slam the comedian for being insensitive towards groups you’re not supposed to make jokes about, specifically transgendered people. Chappelle, undaunted, shrugged them all off. He wouldn’t back down.
Not but a few years down the line, Chappelle would release what seems a lot like a follow up in “The Closer,” where he effectively doubled down on his stances, even going so far as to say that he sides with J.K. Rowling as a “TERF” or Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist.
Once again, the critics, activist groups, and even Netflix employees came for him. Once again, Chappelle refused to back down.
Chappelle is winning, and other comedians are starting to take note.
According to TMZ, comedian Damon Wayans equated Chappelle’s victories to freeing slaves.
“I feel like Dave freed the slaves,” Wayans said. “The comedians, we were slaves to PC culture and he just, you know, as an artist he’s Van Gogh. Cut his ear off, he’s trying to tell us it’s okay.”
Wayans went on to say something very poignant about being honest about where we are as a society.
“Someone needs to look us in the eye and say, ‘You’re no longer free in this country. You’re not free to say what you want, you say what we want you to say, otherwise, we will cancel you. That’s the discussion we should have,” said Wayans.
Wayans’ words reveal something about comedians in this day and age, and it harkens back to the warning we got back when Seinfeld first expressed his desire to never tell jokes on college campuses.
They feel stuck, and may even go so far as to say they feel enslaved to the modern PC culture which is more intolerant and rigid than they accuse their enemies of being.
Of all aspects of our culture, the one the left likely despises the most is comedy. While it attacks right-leaning thought leaders they’re only capable of reaching so far. Comedy, however, is a universal language that can highlight the ridiculousness of any given subject. Its specialty is destroying sacred cows, a necessary service to society that stops a certain group or thing from ruling society both inside and outside of legal bounds.
It is, for all intents and purposes, a societal disinfectant.
University social justice warriors had good practice keeping comedy off campuses, and translated that into the world outside of school, but it’s time we start retaking the ground we lost. It’s time that more comedians start speaking out and shrugging off the mob when it inevitably comes for them.
Chappelle showed us how.