In regards to Daniel Tosh

A quick recap: Daniel Tosh is a comedian. One who tells jokes about how funny rape is. In response to a woman in the audience voicing the opinion that rape jokes aren’t funny, Tosh stated that it would be really funny if that particular woman were raped right then by five guys in the nightclub. She fled. Her version of the story is here. There is another version from the night club owner which really doesn’t make things sound any better for Tosh-O here.

He issued a non-pology on Twitter and the internet exploded. Several really good blog posts dealt with the situation excellently. Such as Lindy West’s on Jezebel and Curtis Luciani among others.

The usual crowd of dudebros showed up to talk down to teh wimminz and play Male Privilege Bingo with everyone. Mention was made of sammiches and kitchens. Just another day on the internet when anything to do with gender relations is brought up and people absolutely lose their shit.

One of the arguments that seemed to pop up the most was the ‘Comedians need freedom to express themselves or humour everywhere will die’ and ‘She broke the rules by heckling so he had every right to smite her’. Yeah okay, I’m amping it up a bit, but I really did see those variations. This got me wondering. When exactly were comedians granted a position that was above any reproach? When did this profession become sacrosanct?

I can think of no other profession that grants this ‘get out of trouble free card’. Say something stupid/racist/sexist/borderline sociopathic? Bring out the ultimate defense: ‘It was just a JOKE. Relax. I’m a COMEDIAN. You just don’t understand humour.’ We don’t even let preachers away with this shit. And at least they’re supposedly speaking the divine wishes of the all-knowing mega-lord. Or whatever.

No one is above critique. See that’s the flip side of the ‘Free Speech’ argument that so many seem to draw like a gun. Yes, you can say stupid things…and then I can verbally tear you a new asshole for it. That’s how free speech works. It’s not a one way road and you don’t get immunity by invoking humour. Clearly, if large groups of people are upset with what you’ve said you’re not as funny as you think you are. We don’t let out politicians away with this. We don’t let our journalists away with it. Why in the ever loving fuck would we let comedians away with it?

3 thoughts on “In regards to Daniel Tosh

    • theyazata says:

      Thank you, Sarah. For reading my post and for the link to the petition. My personal feelings on this issue are that centering a woman out in a nightclub in this way while the audience (and strange men) leer and laugh went WAY over the line. Laughing it off as a joke (as so many of his defenders did) afterwards made it even worse. I will check out the petition.

      • Sarah Levis says:

        I couldn’t agree with you more. The comments that I’ve been reading from his defenders (and the responses that people standing up for that woman have been getting) have left me feeling physically ill. The reaction is almost more telling than the transgression. Very sad, and truly terrifying.

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