not bad, but i agree he could have been harder on himself but he did apologize and he certainly looks like he knows what an ass he made of himself.
too bad cause i love seinfeld. it's about the only thing i watch on the tv.
o' well. moving on....
Can you believe that this guy attended Evergreen?
BV, you say, '...he did apologize and he certainly looks like he knows what an ass he made of himself'
Of course! He's been making an ass out of himself for most of his career, and it's been funny - that's why we're so ready to quickly forgive and forget. And Jerry obviously still goes for laughs with Sicilian ethnic stereotyping. It's all good, I reckon. Except the Seinfeld cartoon, it was lame.
How did he stereotype Sicilians? he said the mob, not italian. Fucking Italians think they invented organized crime. Maybe the show was in harlem and he was making fun of blacks too.
You can tell that Richards is pretty desperate at this point. His career has been floundering for a while, and being painted as a racist would be the final nail in the coffin. And while I think that this apology may be motivated in part by genuine concern, there's no way of telling how much is just panicked ass-covering.
But I fucking hate hecklers. Aside from hate speech, any asshole blabbering in the audience RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE COMIC deserves a big boot to the head. We didn't see it, but I'm assuming that Richards had a reason to go off to begin with. (Where did he come up with 'stick a fork in his ass", though??)
Okay... really sorry about the second part of those comments above. I need to actually *watch* something before I comment on it. I assumed that he launched into all the the racist bullshit *after* he was called out. That was completely uncalled for.
But I still can't understand the point of the entire routine. Even if he was trying to be all edgy and dangerous and everything, it seemed more like crazy ranting than anything with a... well... point. Or punchline. Or anything vaguely funny, which is what I'm assuming that the people in the comedy club were paying to see.
I know it's pointless, but I'll just go ahead and register myself here: I find the concept of "hate speech" creepy and Orwellian.
I recall an incident many moons ago when I called into Dan Savage's radio show and kvetched about the fact that we weren't allowed to listen to his show at the pizza place where I worked because some of the drivers said it offended them. I pointed out that we were allowed to listen to NWA, and that it therefore seemed to me that the thing people were offended by was not so much the supposed impropriety but more the "queer content" of Savage Love Live.
So Dan goes, "What's NWA?"
And I go, "It's a hiphop group out of Compton. Stands for Niggaz With Attitude-"
Next thing I know I'm listening to a dial tone. I turn up the radio just in time to hear myself being bleeped and disconnected and Dan's going, "Whoa! We don't use that word on this program!"
So, you know, hello irony, this is Dan Savage.
Mostly I think it's kind of sad and fucked up that the alterna-crowd, who are supposedly all about challenging taboos about saying cursing and nudity and whatever else are the ones who work the hardest to create this new taboo around a word. It's just a fucking word, and it's intellectually dishonest to pretend a word carries the same moral weight as, say an act of violence or political oppression.
Yes! Anyone who spent four years tip-toeing arround all the thought police there would have at least least much pent-up rage.
Unfortuantely we can't see/hear what set "Kramer" off (please... his NAME is Michael Richards). Sheesh... whatta buffoon on many levels but, I do see a potential positive resulting from his racist rant: perhaps "Seinfeld" will no longer be shown on TV! YEAH!
HA! "Thought Police"!
Joshua, it is a word, but it's not JUST a word. Words have the power that people bestow onto them. We're not at a point right now where "nigger" can be taken lightly--you have to consider the context. (Perhaps indicitave of that is that I paused before even typing the word.) Richards was giving the word hate and rage and he admits that. He didn't mean the same thing that NWA means. So no, he didn't physically attack the heckler, but it was an attack nonetheless and something to take seriously.
I watched Letterman last night and it seems like Richards isn't even sure what happened. When he started talking, people started giggling...they thought it was a joke, or a bit. Seinfeld had to tell the audience to stop laughing, that it wasn't funny. He seemed totally shell-shocked. Or totally fucked up. Probably both.
I agree with Davida in that it is not *just* a word. And it was said in a hateful way. However, I think that NWA is a pretty hateful name for a group. Sadly, I think that many people associate rap and hip hop with woman-hating and black-degrading lyrics.
What is shocking to me is that Laughing Factory chose to put him on for ANOTHER night after his tirade. Now with all the press they are saying that he is not welcome. But why did they put him on the second night? Greed most likely. I'm emailing Laughing Factory and telling them that I'm never going to their venue again. Fine, I've never been before but whatever, details...
Well, "niggaz," sure we could use that.
My hand wasn't on the dump button back in the day when I did a radio show. And I'm such a geek that I had never heard of NWA, and didn't know it from Adam. But if you were dumped, the producer dumped you. And I covered. Surely you can say the name of popular group with "niggaz" in its name on any radio show, even my dumb, late radio show.
Mistakes were made, Joshua. Sorry about that.
How about when Jerry Seinfeld demanded the Letterman audience "stop laughing"? Jerry seemed like a rich smug prick.
the taboo surrounding the word isn't new and you can't blame alterna-crowd creating it. it can be argued that in some instances the 'n' word is at least synonomous(sp) with acts of violence and political oppression and when whites use it such acts are likely to follow. furthermore i'll say most black folks i know don't use the word, even in anger.so i don't think anger is an excuses its usage any more than drunkeness or being gakked up does.what makes the tirade ugly and alive was
the '50 years ago we would have put a pichfork up his ass'. which is a historical fact and not at all a joke.
he apologized. so i'll forgive him. but he is clearly still a very confused individual.
and he may never again be funny.
Am I the only person who thinks that Richards' comments are racially violent? Hecklers or not, his response is steeped in deep-seated hatred for black people. Using the "n" word when describing an acronym for a popular rap group is a completely different issue. Using the word while referencing an era of degradation and violence against black people is unacceptable. I think it's sick. Forgiving his racial epithets amounts to acceptance of a racist ideology. The public needs to hold him accountable and I, for one, won't be accepting his apology just so I don't have to feel guilty about watching Seinfeld again.
No worries Dan.
I agree with Davida in that it is not *just* a word.
Yes, it is. Every chump who tries to sell it as something more than a word tries to do so with some line about how "words have power." To which I reply that yes, words-- wurdZA --do have power. In which regard "nigger" is no different than all the other words. For example, the word "racist" has power. And yet-- nobody seems to have any special compunction about using that one.
(Perhaps indicative of that is that I paused before even typing the word.)
Yeah. Tell me, does it occur to you that the reason you paused before even typing it is that you've been programmed to be afraid of a fucking word? That the social consequences of being seen to use that word are so totally out or proportion with the consequences of using any other word in the English language that you actually have to make a conscious effort and force yourself to type it? Try this: try saying it. Say it out loud. Feel that little hitch, like you're forcing it out? Like something awful's going to happen to you if you say it?
That's a taboo; a crude and unreasoning superstition. There's a difference between knowing what a word means-- recognizing the power associated with its meaning --and living in fear that you'll be hounded from the village just for uttering it.
Yeah what does this mean abotu all them seinfeld re-runs? I'm not sure I can watch them anymore...
Where's Jackie Childs when you need him?
the taboo surrounding the word isn't new and you can't blame alterna-crowd creating it
Indeed. I don't blame us for creating it, but I do blame us for perpetuating it when breaking taboos is supposedly sort of our raison d’être.
it can be argued that in some instances the 'n' word is at least synonomous(sp) with acts of violence and political oppression
Sure it can. It can also be argued that every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten. It can be argued that the earth is flat and that if we allow gay marriage the human race will die out in 100 years because everybody will stop breeding. All kinds of silliness "can be argued." If you'd actually like to make that argument, I'd be willing to test it. But please don't short sheet me with "it can be argued".
In the absence of that argument, no, the n-word all by itself is not remotely synonymous with acts of violence and political oppression. How do I know this? I can't honestly say I know it with one hundred percent certainty, but I've been called pretty much every name in the book and I've been beaten, bashed and threatened on pretenses ranging from robbery to race and my experience is that I'd much rather be called a name-- even a name with hateful historical and social connotations --than have my ass kicked or be politically disenfranchised.
And, just as a point of order, I'm not defending Richards' behavior in particular. I'm discussing the n-word generally.
@20 - laughing my ass off. Genius.
MY point by way of the richards example is that he uttered the word in conjunction with a sentiment of violence. that history proves time and time again when whtites utter the word , they may also intend to resort to politcal oppresion or violence. . this conversation about the word is directly connected to this incident. this is not a theoretical discussion in the same way as masturbation, god and kittens. you want to have this conversation in this vacuum, isolating it from what's happening now, it's up to date context. have it some other time and in some other context and perhaps the outcome of the discussion might be different. calling me and/or others chumps is your way of using words to denigrate and cheapen the discussion. that is your momentary point of power. in somewhat the same manner 'nigger' derives its power from verifiable connections - race, violence and politcal oppression - not sentimental ones. richards ( the reason this blog post is happening in the moment ) directed this word to black people because he intended to hurt them and remeinisced about a time that he could BECAUSE they were black. whites don't call whites niggers because of this verifiable history and power. perhaps the word would lose it's power if they did. but they don't. that's why richards used it in this context.it wouldn't occur to him to call white hecklers niggers.
dan, davida, and other whites don't utter that word because they don't have those intentions.. but they should answer for themselves on this score.
and positing that one would rather be called a nigger than lynched, or a faggot rather than bashed, or a cunt rather than getting slapped or raped is obvious, and ridiculous as an argument. you and i would much rather that neither would happen. period.
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not bad, but i agree he could have been harder on himself but he did apologize and he certainly looks like he knows what an ass he made of himself.too bad cause i love seinfeld. it's about the only thing i watch on the tv.o' well. moving on.... I disagree go to http://www.apartments.waw.pl/
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