News & Politics

Feminists Still Angry That Louis C.K. Is Allowed to Exist

Feminists Still Angry That Louis C.K. Is Allowed to Exist
Louis C.K. appears onstage at Comedy Central's "Night of Too Many Stars: America Comes Together for Autism Programs" at the Beacon Theatre on Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015 in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

As I’ve said to anybody who’ll listen, I don’t like what Louis C.K. did and I don’t blame anybody who doesn’t want to go see him perform his stand-up act. He alienated a lot of people, and if he can’t or won’t win them back, fine. Sucks to be him. But I also don’t have a problem with anybody else going to see him. If people still think he’s funny, if they don’t care about the rest of it, that’s also fine. I can acknowledge both things because I have the capacity for reason, which is also why I’m not a feminist.

If feminists don’t want people to think they’re totalitarians, they’re doing a crappy job of it. Stacey Solie at the Daily Beast went to Louis’ show in San Jose Wednesday night, and she did what any good journalist would do: She shamed the people in line to see him.

“I don’t spend a lot of time trying to follow public figures’ private lives,” said Tiff Ting, who was first in line.

Behind Ting was Juan Duran, who said he’d been a fan of C.K.’s for years. Asked his thoughts on the jacking-off incidents, Duran said, “I don’t know him… It’s he said, she said.”

When it was pointed out that C.K. had admitted everything, Duran shifted gears. “Everyone deserves a road to redemption,” he said.

Uh-oh. That guy “shifted gears”! She got ‘im! Did he really think he could just enjoy an evening of comedy without being made to answer for it?

Solie wasn’t done, though:

Onstage, C.K. wasted no time in addressing the complicity of the audience—“You’ve read the worst possible things you could read about a person, about me, and you’re here”—before pivoting to mansplaining comedy.

“The whole point of comedy is to say things that you shouldn’t say. That’s the entire point,” he said.

See, he’s “mansplaining” because he’s a man. When a man explains something, it doesn’t matter if he’s right or not, because men are bad. If you think he might know what he’s talking about just because this is how he makes his living, then you must hate women as much as he does.

(I’m not sure I agree that saying things you shouldn’t say is the point of comedy, but it’s definitely the point of his comedy. That’s what made him famous and, eventually, infamous.)

Then, of course, there were the protesters, because there always needs to be protesters.

And the media folks are angry about it, because that gets more clicks:

He’s “doubling down.” He’s “learned nothing.” If you dare to laugh at his jokes, you’re “making a choice.” The hall monitors are here, and they’re watching everything you do, and they’re writing it all down.

You’d better not laugh at that comedian we don’t like anymore. He’s bad, and if you laugh, that means you’re bad too. Do you want people to think you’re bad?

I don’t know what’s going to satisfy these joyless scolds. They don’t like that he said he was going to “step back and take a long time to listen,” and now he’s back, a mere… uh… 14 months later. I’m not sure how long he was supposed to go away, but apparently 14 months isn’t sufficient.

If anybody is being forced to go to a comedy club and listen to Louis C.K. tell jokes, then that’s kidnapping and the police need to step in. If not, then how the hell is it anybody else’s business or problem?

You can go to Netflix and watch Hannah Gadsby anytime you want, if that’s how you think you should spend your time. Stop wagging your finger at everybody else.