You know what should be taken seriously though? You know what really, absolutely, totally, 100 percent-edly, completely and utterly must be taken very, very, very seriously at all times? Artistic freedom. And when I say artistic, I mean comedians' artistic freedom, of course. S’very important. It's very, very, very important that comedians are free at all times to do their very important and hard job, which is only slightly easier than mining or brain surgery or social work. And 10 times more important. You know?
Yep, I'm being sarky, of course – a little bit. A teeny-tiny, weeny bit.
So. You know that kernel of truth thingie? Well, the kernel of truth where I think all Americans (except for the gays) are rapists is quite a big one. It could kind of get stuck in my throat and choke me to death sometimes. I really do find American men to be, in general, rapists and/or rape apologists or both. I think I met a Canadian man once who wasn't that rapey. Canadians can be almost normal sometimes. But Americans are rapey. It's their culture. They've got this rapey culture and I think most Americans I've met are really proud of that. This is one thing I really resent about their presence in Europe: that they don't even have the humility to be ashamed of bringing their rapey ways to our shores. Most Muslims you meet are aware that they are the strangers in this land, more or less. But Americans, never. They come to Berlin and they inflict their rapiness on us with their silly cheerleader hatred and inane "your mom" jokes and those despicable baseball metaphors and then at some point, after about seven years here, they go home, as meaningless and rapey as ever. Without having learned a word of German. But you know. That's okay. At least they go home in the end. Small mercies and all that.
Sometimes, every now and again, I meet an American who I actually quite like. I really decide I like them. I say things to my boyfriend like: "Hey, Todd's really nice, isn't he? For an American." Or, "Dan's really tolerant and modern and open-minded, isn't he? Almost like a normal person." Or, "Jeff really isn't that much of a rapist, is he? Even though he's a Yank. I bet if he were European, he'd be a total feminist." Stuff like that. And then, after about six months, maybe a year, sometimes two, they say something rapey and get struck off my Christmas card list. This always happens. So, anyways, this week, the last American I liked in the whole world, the last one, is being all, like, pro-rape on the Daniel Tosh thing. That's it. Now I hate them all. Now I can literally join Al-Qaeda.
What I find really bollocks is this artistic freedom line. The last American I liked in the world, he's all, like, oh, it's all about artistic freedom. Oh, Daniel Tosh is an artist, he needs to have all this artistic freedom or the terrorists/Stasi/Republicans have won. Artistic freedom, you're being fascistic and he wants to be artistic, why else was Rosa Luxemburg murdered by the Nazis if not for Daniel Tosh's artistic freedom. It's engraved in the Statue of Liberty's armpit: everyone who seeks refuge in this land will have the freedom to take guns into school and do rape jokes, don't you know? Why's it engraved in the Statue of Liberty's armpit if it's not the most important principle of modern existence? Sod those poor bastards being tortured in Guantanemo, where's Amnesty when you need them? A COMEDIAN GOT HECKLED! It's like miners in the old days being forced down mines without helmets on, it's totally inhumane. Artistic freedom. Artistic freedom. What a load of shite. Like that cunt's "artistic" freedom outweighs women's freedom to not be raped. Yeah, right. Like this is all we expect from art in general, or comedy in particular. Artistic freedom and all that gubbins. Bullshit. It's such bullshit, it's almost boring.
Like, artistic freedom should be our main GOAL. Like artistic freedom is in itself the main point. What a load of bollocks. Hey, hey, hey, look at me! I'm the big boy with the mikey-mike in my hand! Ha! I can say what I like, I'm on the stage, I have the microphone in my hand. I have the power to say what I like, I have the freedom to say what I want: Wasn't it great when I raped that insect, when I tortured that Oma, when I pissed on that dead tramp, wasn't it fantastic when I wanked off that dog, when I shat on that doorstep, when I punched that baby? It's okay – this is art, it's free – these words are just words, they don't mean anything. I don't mean anything. This doesn't mean anything! It's just me, talking. I'm just talking. Because you know, it's very hard work, being a comedian. Slightly less hard than mining. But only slightly you know, and that's when you don't get heckled.
I think this is crap. I think this is cowardly, meaningless crap. I think this desperate desire to justify evil because art is meaningless anyway is crap. I think we should mean stuff. I think Bill Hicks meant stuff. I think Chris Rock means stuff. I think this has to mean something. If you're just doing this, just to check you're allowed to, why the fuck are you bothering? To quote one of the best comedians the world has ever offered us: “You're wasting your life.” This should mean something. It's meant to mean something. It has to mean something.
Changing artforms briefly now, sorry. Tess of the D'Urbervilles. It's a novel. Tess of the D'Urbervilles is a great book. It's a great book because it means something. It's about a pure woman being fucked over by a loser and a cunt. Angel's the loser, Alec's the cunt. Maybe Tess gets raped, I kind of think she doesn't, actually. There are great images in Tess – like when she turns into the landscape, or when they're at Stonehenge and the cops come for her, or the bit with Angel and her sister at the end. Don't want to spoil it for you. There are great images in Tess. But it's not just the images that make it a great book. It's a great book because of its meaning, and because of its message. It wouldn't be a good book, if it didn't have a message. Hardy wouldn't have even fucking written it if he hadn't had a message. Now, I know there's great art with bad messages – Leni Riefenstahl – and there's great art with no messages – I'm thinking Peep Show and Brett Easton Ellis. But the best art can't even be separated from its message. The best art is a message. And it means something. It fucking means something.
But yeah, for sure, you're right: that talentless cunt can make rape jokes, and other more or less talentless cunts can defend him. The fact that when he actually threatens to rape people, though, he's committing a criminal offence and the fact that you still defend him belies your argument that it's "only" words and reveals the subconscious truth that you actually find rape okay. This in itself is actually fairly normal, because rape has only been properly seen a crime for a few years, so it's normal that you find it okay for men to rape and threaten to rape women. However, don't try and pretend that your acceptance of rape is "meaningless", or that comedy is more important than people not being raped. It's not meaningless, you're just a bit pro-rape and plus comedy is only important if it's not totally meaningless. Got that?
Like, for fuck's sake. Comedy is storytelling, man. Dickens did stand-up. Grow up. This is it. This matters.
And Louis CK? I know, I think he's a genius, too. But all you silly boys admiring and adoring him so much, thinking that his talent makes him some kind of God. I think he has used his talent to make the world we live in one where rape is more accepted, one where rape is more okay. For sure, he has the right to do that. And he's done it. The world we live in is one where his daughters (he's got two girls, right?) are now slightly more likely to be raped in than they were before. That's what he's done with his talent. That's what he has chosen to do. He's chosen it. His daughters are more likely to be raped – slightly more likely – and they're a lot more likely to be threatened with rape at a comedy show. That's what he's done. That's the kind of thing human beings can do with their talent. But guess what? They don't got to.
You don't have to.
And that's all I've got to say on the subject.