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Defending Comedy in the Age of Radical Wokeness

comediantes Joan Rivers

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Recently, Melissa Rivers—daughter of the late, legendary comedian Joan Rivers—visited The View. During her conversation with the panel, Nicaraguan Ana Navarro threw out a question that left me wondering: “Joan was known for her edgy comedy […] you never knew what the hell was going to come out of her mouth. Tell me, how do you think she would be navigating today’s day and age? Would she be canceled?”

My response from home to Navarro’s question was shuddering, “Of course, she’d be canceled!”. If there is one comedian who dared to go where no one is allowed to go today—thanks to insufferable political correctness—that was Joan Rivers.

Melissa said that while her mother, who died in 2014, would have had to work within the limits of her content, she would not have bowed to political correctness.

Bill Maher devoted a segment of “Explaining Jokes to Idiots” to Chris Rock’s joke about the movie G.I. Jane and Jada Pinkett Smith. In his monologue he also recalled the cases of Kathy Griffin and Gilbert Gottfried, who made really nasty jokes, “but that’s why we like them!” he exclaimed. He also recalled the cases of Dave Chappelle, Sarah Silverman, and Roseanne Barr.

Certainly, many of the cases Maher mentioned cross lines that I find excessive, but I understand that’s the function of comedians.

“Kids used to go to colleges to lose their virginities. Now they’re going to lose their sense of humor,” Bill said. Such is our sad reality.

This article originally appeared in El American’s newsletter on April 24, 2022. Subscribe for free here!

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