Quotes of the day

posted at 10:41 pm on February 4, 2014 by Allahpundit

At the height of Seinfeld’s popularity, the NBC comedy was repeatedly accused of presenting an exclusively “white” view of its diverse New York City setting. During Jerry Seinfeld’s BuzzFeed Brews with CBS This Morning interview on Monday, BuzzFeed Business Editor Peter Lauria asked about the enduring criticism, which has carried over to his Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee web series. The Crackle docu-comedy featured white male performers (like Larry David, Ricky Gervais, Alec Baldwin, and Michael Richards) in the first batch of episodes, but later included Sarah Silverman and Tina Fey.

“People think it’s the census or something,” Seinfeld said of the assertion that all pop culture should accurately reflect society. “This has gotta represent the actual pie chart of America? Who cares? Funny is the world that I live in. You’re funny, I’m interested. You’re not funny, I’m not interested. I have no interest in gender or race or anything like that.”

***

Needless to say, the scoldosphere didn’t disappoint. Here’s Gawker’s Kyle Chayka, at 9:23 p.m.: “Jerry Seinfeld, the most successful comedian in the world and maker of comedy for and about white people, isn’t interested in trying to include non-white anything in his work.” Here’s Vulture’s Halle Kiefer at 12:57 this morning: “Jerry Seinfeld wanted to clarify that he really, really does not give a tiny rat’s behind about the issue of racial or gender diversity in comedy.”…

The nice thing about the PC scolds is how remarkably predictable they are. The scary thing about the PC scolds is how many of them there are and how willing they are to simply regurgitate nonsense concocted by the ringmasters of the three-ring circus that is the modern left.

***

As the comedy-world blog Splitsider explains, people are upset not because Seinfeld prioritizes humor over diversity, but that he’s saying — given the existence of funny people from a wide variety of backgrounds — that it’s “P.C. nonsense” to give any thought to the message sent by highlighting mostly white men. The very response to his statement, and to the whole recent history of diversity in comedy, shows that he’d do well to give it more weight. Even if he is being purely meritocratic, some comedians have already noted that the system doesn’t necessarily give all voices a shot, whether those exclusions are deliberate or the product of institutional factors. And, because that conversation started before Seinfeld got into it, his deciding to ignore it can’t make it go away.

It’s possible that Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee won’t drive conversation for long enough to have an impact, but if the issue stays in the spotlight, Seinfeld’s perspective will lose. A continued lack of diversity on his show would prove his detractors’ point — and make him look racist and sexist, even if he’s merely failing to actively think about matters of race and sex — while increased diversity would seem to acknowledge that the “nonsense” isn’t so nonsensical at all. There’s no longer a way for a prominent comedian with Seinfeld’s level of influence to be so glib about the issue — especially given that of his 26 guests, only 2 have been women and another 2 have been non-white. (There have been no minority women guests so far.)

***

“He seems to suggest that any comedian who is not a white male is also not funny,” Chayka asserted, based on nothing more than his own passionate belief in the inherent necessity of gender and race-based quotas.

“Which is too bad,” Chayka continued ill-advisedly, “because Seinfeld is downplaying the work of everyone from Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby to Aziz Ansari, Mindy Kaling, and Eddie Huang, who are all in various stages of their own sitcoms that just might turn out to be the next Seinfeld.”

Surely, Chayka researched this post before he went off on a tear. He must know that Seinfeld called Pryor “the Picasso of our profession,” or that he hosted an event honoring Cosby and called himself “not that funny” by comparison, or that Ansari regularly joins Seinfeld’s exclusive inner circle of comedians. Et cetera, et cetera.

In fact, there are few working comedians who do not have a story to tell about how Seinfeld and his encouraging cohorts aided in the development of their careers.

***

The idea behind diversity is not that everyone gets their fair share of the Jerry Seinfeld webisode pie, it’s that theoretically, if we’re choosing comics based on their relative merit, the natural result should roughly approximate the diversity of the field and, if it doesn’t, maybe there’s a reason for that. The “quota” isn’t the object of the exercise, it is one measurement of it. It’s something to think about, and if Jerry Seinfeld did think about it, there is no way he would conclude that there are only two black comics worth getting coffee with, or one female comic. He would conclude that, for whatever reason, he missed something.

Instead, though, Seinfeld makes the choice not to think about it, and not to care about it, because the mere observation equals accusation, and thinking about it, discussing it, equals an admission.

As with most white males, it is Jerry Seinfeld’s privilege not to care about diversity, but I guarantee his show is the poorer for it. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

***

***


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4

canopfor on February 5, 2014 at 12:54 AM

Interesting snippet! Thanks Canopfor!! :)

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 12:57 AM

Scrumpy:Anytime:)

canopfor on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:07 AM

I might try one. Do yours go on both sides of blade or just left side.

SparkPlug on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

In Sochi, Russia, Don’t Touch The Water

I knew the Russian Olympics was going to be spectacular!

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

Class,, is attractive.

wolly4321 on February 5, 2014 at 1:08 AM

im with ya there…100%…

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

Nite wolly

Schadenfreude on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

Maybe I’ve missed the memo but, almost without exception, every black comedian today has only one topic — being black.

Bill Cosby was hilarious. Richard Pryor, on a good day, was insanely funny. Flip Wilson was a comic genius. Red Buttons, etcetera.

I’m with Jerry (and I don’t think he’s half as funny as any of these guys). If it’s funny, it’s funny. If not, it’s not. Elections aren’t supposed to be about the color of your skin. Neither is comedy.

IndieDogg on February 5, 2014 at 1:14 AM

A little older, and better, version.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbaSh8i5eyE

BuckeyeSam on February 5, 2014 at 1:07 AM

…I was ANGstroms away from posting this – instead I went with Marvin Gaye via Jack Black at the last second….

…Great Minds, etcetera…

“….We’ve all gaat – our own, funny moves…..I’ve got mine, baby – you’ve got yours, too…”

williamg on February 5, 2014 at 1:14 AM

williamg on February 5, 2014 at 1:05 AM

;D

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 1:14 AM

Your quips keep me on my toes!! :)

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

Well how else can I give you a pedi.

SparkPlug on February 5, 2014 at 1:15 AM

…Elections aren’t supposed to be about the color of your skin. Neither is comedy.

IndieDogg on February 5, 2014 at 1:14 AM

Well said!!

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 1:15 AM

SparkPlug on February 5, 2014 at 1:15 AM

Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh how nice!!

I’d accept, but B9!! ;)

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 1:16 AM

laffs…red foxx …but I got your point..

red buttons was a short white dude…and funny as well

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:17 AM

Otay,..gots Grandson #2 in the morning, see you peeps in the AM,

heres a couple of tunes,..everyone have a great night:)

Summer Breeze – Seals & Croft #1 Hit(1972)
******************************************

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsW8rXPcnM0

Steely Dan – Reelin’ In the Years
**********************************

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bwHK1xkgJA

♥ ♫ ♪ Gary Wright: Dream Weaver, Album/Studio Version HQ ♥ ♫
*************************************************************

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-DmAh0dObI

canopfor on February 5, 2014 at 1:18 AM

That darn B9. When will she visit us? She likes cats right? Maybe somebody should meeow.

SparkPlug on February 5, 2014 at 1:19 AM

And so, it comes to this…

May God Bless you all!

Good night peeps :)

Catch ya later!!

* swoosh *

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 1:19 AM

All About Tolerance

kcewa on February 5, 2014 at 1:20 AM

SparkPlug on February 5, 2014 at 1:13 AM

both…they come in pairs..
it helps calm down a thin kerf blade if you have wobble..
also a 80 tooth has little to no tear out …
great clean edges for tenons and things..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:20 AM

sleep well ms Scrumpy…thanks for the visit n movie tips

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:21 AM

Nite Canada and scrumps!

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 1:21 AM

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 1:21 AM

Hi M9. She certainly is delightful and spritely. I stole the word spritely from MG. I get most of my words from her and my wood from BMore.

SparkPlug on February 5, 2014 at 1:25 AM

Good for Seinfeld – but the very best news is he appeared not the least bit intimidated by the stupid suggestion he must “celebrate diversity” on his web show, or in anything he does. And he even spit back his defiance!

He could be the Jewish Phil Robertson!

Obama, OTOH, could be the half-black Eddie Haskell.

Adjoran on February 5, 2014 at 1:26 AM

williamg on February 5, 2014 at 1:05 AM

;D

Scrumpy on February 5, 2014 at 1:14 AM

……got it! ; )

williamg on February 5, 2014 at 1:27 AM

Grateful Dead – Me & Bobby Mcgee

kcewa on February 5, 2014 at 1:34 AM

you do know mr Sparky that Gerstner is having the annual Valentines day sale…
maybe you should upgrade your begging and get a nice tool chest..
http://gerstnerusa.com/

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:37 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNHxTWOKvgM

have ya all gone comfortably numb on me..
don’t leave me here with a silly wood tip
as the QotD thread killer….have a heart..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:04 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNHxTWOKvgM

have ya all gone comfortably numb on me..
don’t leave me here with a silly wood tip
as the QotD thread killer….have a heart..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:04 AM

kcewa harshed my mellow with his bogus Dead link!

Hope sparky hasn’t sanded off his mittens.

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:10 AM

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:10 AM

for sparkys sake I hope his mittens is all he sands off..
bless you for not letting me be the thread killer…

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:14 AM

M9 you been here a while
who is this verbulance (or whatever) person?
a paid troll??..just a loon??..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:17 AM

Verbaloon is another one of my buddies. A regular troll, to be sure.

Lanceman on February 5, 2014 at 2:22 AM

The problem with Liberals is that they can’t leave politics out of anything. They can’t even let a plumber be a plumber if he doesn’t fix pipes with an eye towards social injustice and unconscious racial bias. They simply cannot conceive of how a comedian would hold to the notion that his job is to make people laugh. All they can think of is that golden opportunity to use fame and influence to propagandize people to the liberal world view, and to pass it up is literally a crime against humanity in their rule book.

The society which scorns excellence in plumbing as a humble activity and tolerates shoddiness in philosophy because it is an exalted activity will have neither good plumbing nor good philosophy: neither its pipes nor its theories will hold water.
– John W. Gardner

And as they scorn excellence in comedy they have become humorless apparatchiks.

Socratease on February 5, 2014 at 2:25 AM

M9 you been here a while
who is this verbulance (or whatever) person?
a paid troll??..just a loon??..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:17 AM

Why you asking me? I know as much as you! As Del says, it’s verbaloon.

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:26 AM

The better question is why am I up at this hour watching a youtube video of a guy roasting green coffee beans in a metal mixing bowl with a heat gun and thinking I need to get some green beans!?!

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:28 AM

Go to the Good Will store and get a Popcorn Pumper, it does a great job roasting coffee.

Socratease on February 5, 2014 at 2:32 AM

I thought it might be a paid troll…
no one could be that daft without getting paid..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:32 AM

Go to the Good Will store and get a Popcorn Pumper, it does a great job roasting coffee.

Socratease on February 5, 2014 at 2:32 AM

I saw that too. 1250W+, not the lower wattage ones.

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:36 AM

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:10 AM

Grateful Dead – Me & Bobby Mcgee – Fillmore West – 07/02/71

kcewa on February 5, 2014 at 2:37 AM

I thought it might be a paid troll…
no one could be that daft without getting paid..

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 2:32 AM

I hope they are paying it in Milk Bones or Gummi Worms.

Murphy9 on February 5, 2014 at 2:38 AM

Trolling

kcewa on February 5, 2014 at 2:41 AM

A continued lack of diversity on his show would prove his detractors’ point — and make him look racist and sexist, even if he’s merely failing to actively think about matters of race and sex — while increased diversity would seem to acknowledge that the “nonsense” isn’t so nonsensical at all.

So according to the left, no matter what you do, you are a racist and/or sexist even if aren’t actively thinking about race and/or sex at all. If you are thinking about race all the time you’re racist, and if you are not thinking about race at all you’re racist.

What does the word “racist” even mean anymore, when everyone is a racist by definition…?

bigjack on February 5, 2014 at 3:03 AM

What does the word “racist” even mean anymore, when everyone is a racist by definition…?

bigjack on February 5, 2014 at 3:03 AM

There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws.

In the case of racism, it’s a moral crime rather than a legal one, but the principle is the same.

Socratease on February 5, 2014 at 3:10 AM

Procol Harum – Conquistador

On going

kcewa on February 5, 2014 at 3:10 AM

You you never please the PC wackos. They’ve been turned loose & now are out of control. No matter how liberal someone thinks they are, the PC wackos will turn on them.

RdLake on February 5, 2014 at 4:26 AM

I watched a handful of his coffee episodes. Some really good stuff.

But the best part is, Seinfeld isn’t trying to be political in the least, but when he lets it slip, he’s clearly got conservative sympathies, at a minimum.

Ricky Gervais asked him or told him something about the death penalty and Seinfeld immediately flipped it around and asked him about abortion, which Gervais, of course, basically ignored.

Seinfeld didn’t press the issue, but you could tell that even if he isn’t conservative, per se, that he is not a convenient go along to get along liberal. It doesn’t surprise me in the least that he’s saying F the diversity crowd.

deadrody on February 5, 2014 at 5:16 AM

laffs…red foxx …but I got your point..

red buttons was a short white dude…and funny as well

going2mars on February 5, 2014 at 1:17 AM

And he never got a dinner!!

Khun Joe on February 5, 2014 at 5:17 AM

Lol msdnc has their talking points…..the gop is twisting the CBO numbers ..now they like Glenn Kessler fact checking….. they are still pushing the wh version

Pathetic

Let us see how the mj crew spins it……

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 5:26 AM

The Crackle docu-comedy featured white male performers (like Larry David, Ricky Gervais, Alec Baldwin, and Michael Richards) in the first batch of episodes, but later included Sarah Silverman and Tina Fey.

I’m no diversity advocate, but that Crackle list is decidedly heavy on the washed up loser ethnic.

“Which is too bad,” Chayka continued ill-advisedly, “because Seinfeld is downplaying the work of everyone from Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby to Aziz Ansari, Mindy Kaling, and Eddie Huang, who are all in various stages of their own sitcoms that just might turn out to be the next Seinfeld.”

Now that there is funny, especially with including Pryor, may he rest in peace.

Dusty on February 5, 2014 at 5:28 AM

important to note that job loss is not directly linked to obamacare
-mika wants to make sure you know that

live by the cbo, die by the cbo
-dana milbank

nyt editorial 180 degrees from the wsj editorial, amazing
-mike barnicle

mika looks grim….awwwww, spin it girl

joe not spinning it at all…

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:09 AM

the headline is a tad bit misleading
-mika spinning

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:12 AM

sam stein trying to sell the point that with obamacare you’ll have the choice not to work and start a small business.

Hey idiot, if the business makes money your healthcare costs will rise along with your taxes making it not worth your while.

liberalism really is a mental disease.

renalin on February 5, 2014 at 6:14 AM

look at massachusetts, look at mitt romney, this was a gop idea originally, no more job lock!!!
-spin, spin spin

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:15 AM

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:15 AM

donny deutcsh even gave the gope an ad “obamacare leads to the loss of 2 million jobs”

you won’t see the gope use it.

renalin on February 5, 2014 at 6:17 AM

renalin on February 5, 2014 at 6:17 AM

yup
*sigh*

its nice that there won’t be job lock and all, but where are the jobs?
-barnicle

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:21 AM

mj crew loved the coke superbowl ad…

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:34 AM

Who is that aging bald dude in the top pic wearing Tojo spectacles?

Sherman1864 on February 5, 2014 at 6:40 AM

To those who don’t like Seinfeld’s approach, do your own show and we’ll see how that works out.

diogenes on February 5, 2014 at 6:42 AM

Good Morning, Patriots! And, Trolls.

Cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face.

My take: Ryan Meets With Schumer to Discuss Illegal Immigration Surrender Terms

kingsjester on February 5, 2014 at 6:53 AM

Maybe, instead of trying to divide humor up by race and gender, he is trying to make it available to all HUMANITY instead.

To show what is humorous about the human condition.

And if the PC scolds don’t watch out, THEY will become the butt of jokes and THEY will come off looking as racist and sexist.

Which they are.

Which is why their complaints are hilarious.

ajacksonian on February 5, 2014 at 7:13 AM

Excellent take KJ

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 7:35 AM

kingsjester on February 5, 2014 at 6:53 AM

Nice write up.

Straight up, big business has bought our congress.

This is why I once wrote (and O’Reilly quoted me ) this idiot is an incompetent racist jackass:

http://washington.cbslocal.com/2014/02/04/sotomayor-labeling-illegal-immigrants-criminals-is-insulting/

dogsoldier on February 5, 2014 at 7:44 AM

My take: Ryan Meets With Schumer to Discuss Illegal Immigration Surrender Terms

kingsjester on February 5, 2014 at 6:53 AM

Somebody needs to explain why in the hell the House GOP is even talking about rewarding the illegals when, during the budget battles (before surrender) the cry was that all the focus needed to be on Obamacare. Why now? Is the House leadership really that beholden to big business? And why not try hiring legal immigrants and or the unemployed before bringing the criminals “out of the shadows?”

Happy Nomad on February 5, 2014 at 7:54 AM

Happy Nomad on February 5, 2014 at 7:54 AM

The only way they can increase profits is to crush the wages and benefits of American working people.

The company Obama gave the Obamacare website contract to pays H1-B foreign guest worker, chief programmers $22,000 a year. Americans doing that job earn $120,000 a year or more.

The dems did this before. It was called slavery.

dogsoldier on February 5, 2014 at 7:58 AM

mj crew loved the coke superbowl ad…

cmsinaz on February 5, 2014 at 6:34 AM

Well of course they did! It appeals to their hipster sensibilities. Personally, I think the Budweiser ad featuring the returning soldier was much more an appropriate Superbowl ad. But, unlike Mika, I don’t wake up humming The Internationale. Particularly the third stanza:

The State oppresses and the law cheats.
Tax bleeds the unfortunate.
No duty is imposed on the rich;
The rights of the poor is an empty phrase.
Enough languishing in custody!
Equality wants other laws:
No rights without duties, she says,
Equally, no duties without rights.
|: This is the final struggle
Let us group together, and tomorrow
The Internationale
Will be the human race. :|

Tell me this isn’t a regular theme on MJ!

Happy Nomad on February 5, 2014 at 8:02 AM

The only way they can increase profits is to crush the wages and benefits of American working people.

The company Obama gave the Obamacare website contract to pays H1-B foreign guest worker, chief programmers $22,000 a year. Americans doing that job earn $120,000 a year or more.

The dems did this before. It was called slavery.

dogsoldier on February 5, 2014 at 7:58 AM

True enough but we aren’t talking about legal resident aliens with technical skills. Nobody is “in the shadows” covertly coding!

Happy Nomad on February 5, 2014 at 8:05 AM

My take: Ryan Meets With Schumer to Discuss Illegal Immigration Surrender Terms

kingsjester on February 5, 2014 at 6:53 AM

…(and Trey Gowdy?)…good one……………again!

KOOLAID2 on February 5, 2014 at 8:20 AM

Thanks, y’all!

kingsjester on February 5, 2014 at 8:38 AM

Happy Nomad on February 5, 2014 at 8:05 AM

The amnesty bill will immediately add as many as 30 million low wage unskilled and semi skilled workers to a market with few jobs. Wages will plummet.

The amnesty bill will add as many as 180,000 new H1 and H2 skilled foreign guest workers to a market with very few jobs. Wages will plummet.

Large companies are thinking they will increase their profits from that, but if no one has money….

dogsoldier on February 5, 2014 at 9:08 AM

Not that there’s anything wrong with that…

Galtian on February 5, 2014 at 9:23 AM

AP, why do I have to wade through a bunch of posts about morons nutting their animals?

trl on February 5, 2014 at 10:38 AM

AP, why do I have to wade through a bunch of posts about morons nutting their animals?
trl on February 5, 2014 at 10:38 AM

Because you’re too stupid to go somewhere else? Because you enjoy whining? Because you’re too lazy to start your own blog instead of complaining about Allah’s?

kcewa on February 5, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Seeing how whites are the only group you can make fun with or fun of without being called a racist Seinfeld has it right. Keep up the good work.

Wade on February 5, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Ever wonder why the space challenger crews all had the same exact racial identities ? Four white guys, two women, an Asian and a black guy. Not a giant coincidence. Nothing matters more than PC diversity.

Also – white people are racists.

DeweyWins on February 5, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Seinfeld the show is hilarious, but Seinfeld the comedian stinks. I have the same reaction to every one of the nightclub monologues that early on were part of Seinfeld the show: I never have an out-and-out laugh; it’s always “oh, that’s a little clever,” smile, or not funny at all.

I do think the PC crowd has a point here. There used to be Jewish humor and there was (as we Jews say) goyische humor, and they were just two different things. Now things are more homogenized, but anyone who’s seen Spike Lee’s The Original Kings of Comedy knows that blacks have a humor all their own. I think you’re missing that if you only have the Seinfelds, Crystals, et al.

bobs1196 on February 5, 2014 at 7:46 PM

How much diversity was there on the field during the Super Bowl? PC and diversity snobs only attack when they feel people of color are in an undeserved minority but not when it’s the other way around. Twisted logic but not surprising from the misguided Left.

HoosierStateofMind on February 5, 2014 at 9:09 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3 4