Good: Comedienne refuses to apologize for telling jokes

posted at 10:01 pm on April 24, 2014 by Mary Katharine Ham

In our hypersensitive, self-righteous, constantly offended society, an 80-year-old woman with cojones shall lead us.

Joan Rivers isn’t backing down from her latest controversial comments…

[S]he will not apologize over an appearance on the “Today” show Tuesday in which she compared living arrangements with her daughter to the ordeal of three women held captive for a decade by Ariel Castro.

While promoting their WEtv reality series “Joan and Melissa: Joan Knows Best,” the mother and daughter duo were asked what it was like living together. The elder Rivers has been residing at Melissa’s home in Malibu, Calif., during the taping of the series.

“Those women in the basement in Cleveland had more space,” Rivers said.

Obviously, she does not think her living conditions were comparable to those of the women held captive in Ohio. It wouldn’t be a joke if she did. And, if you hate the joke, fine. Hate the joke and move on.

“I’m a comedienne,’’ she said. “I know what those girls went through. It was a little, stupid joke. There is nothing to apologize for. I made a joke. That’s what I do. Calm down. Calm f—— down. I’m a comedienne. They’re free, so let’s move on.’’

Regardless of what you think of Rivers or the joke, in standing up and telling everyone to “calm f****** down,” she took power from the Perpetually Outraged. Patton Oswalt does the same when he refuses to back down from tweeting a Mark Steyn column. I’m as annoyed as the rest of you when Jon Stewart uses his clown-nose-on/clown-nose-off trick to avoid ever being held accountable for his views or his comments, but that’s not what this is. We know what Rivers’ schtick is. She just tells jokes. They’re usually mean. As a society, we should be able to deal with that.

Make fun of everything. Forcing comedians to genuflect to whatever group doesn’t like their jokes is stupid. If comedians allow it to happen, it bodes poorly for the rest of us and our ability to say a damn thing without being hounded out of our livelihoods. Go on with your bad selves (and your sometimes bad jokes), dissidents.


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Good cry everyone?

Murphy9 on April 25, 2014 at 9:04 AM

\startsarcrant
In the age of numerous Americans getting their news from the likes of Kimmel, Fallon, Stewart, and Colbert I am in favor of overreacting when comedians tell insensitive non-politically correct jokes. The first amendment allows us as citizens to freak out and demand apologies and get them fired.

Comedians should be held to the following standard:
“If the statement was made by a politician, would people freak out? If so, then we must also freak out over a comedian saying the same thing.”

Colbert testified on Capitol Hill IN CHARACTER. Comedians no longer are simply comedians. They are journalists and great Americans who report on national and global events. The standard for what they can and cannot say must be strictly filtered through the PC lens, else they may influence the rest of the country in a non-PC way and allow hatred and bigotry to run rampant.

This is where we are in America.
If Brian Williams cannot say it on the evening news, than a comedian cannot say it either. Some may argue that comedians should be held to an even higher standard, given their television ratings.

We must use the first amendment to crush the first amendment!
\sarcrantoff.

airupthere on April 25, 2014 at 9:05 AM

After watching the season of Apprentice she was on and seeing her on several other things, I have never heard Joan Rivers say anything that was actually funny.

All of it is this intentionally offensive crap that has no business in civilized society.

Sure, no one can force her to apologize, and we shouldn’t try. But the conservative position shouldn’t be “it’s okay to say whatever you want, as long as you pretend it was a joke.” We can still have morals and decency without enforcing speech codes.

FlareCorran on April 25, 2014 at 9:12 AM

Sure, no one can force her to apologize, and we shouldn’t try. But the conservative position shouldn’t be “it’s okay to say whatever you want, as long as you pretend it was a joke.” We can still have morals and decency without enforcing speech codes.

FlareCorran on April 25, 2014 at 9:12 AM

Thread winner.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 9:19 AM

here’s a little tip: if your best defense to defend something you’ve said is “my comment wasn’t meant for that particular person to hear”… that’s a pretty pathetic defense. it doesn’t work. anything you are willing to say about another person, you should also be willing to say to their face.

Sachiko on April 25, 2014 at 12:25 AM

Here’s a little tip. I’m deeply offended that you can’t seem to find the CAPS key, like nearly all other people who type in the English language. It’s pretty pathetic…

Yoop on April 25, 2014 at 9:22 AM

Here’s a little tip. I’m deeply offended that you can’t seem to find the CAPS key, like nearly all other people who type in the English language. It’s pretty pathetic…

Yoop on April 25, 2014 at 9:22 AM

Wither e. e. cummings and k. d. lang?

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 9:24 AM

Wither e. e. cummings and k. d. lang?

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 9:24 AM

I’m pretty sure that Sachiko is neither of them.

Yoop on April 25, 2014 at 9:41 AM

I don’t have a problem with a comedian going to the edge of good taste or over it with jokes, as long as they’re an equal opportunity targeter.

The ones who are beyond contempt are those who think anything goes when it comes to making jokes about the people or groups they either dislike or don’t care about, but are perfectly willing to join the PC police and censure any one making fun of their favored people or pet causes.

jon1979 on April 25, 2014 at 9:46 AM

Thread winner.
Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 9:19 AM

No, sorry. That award goes to lonestar1 @ 10:12AM.

Think about it.

Cleombrotus on April 25, 2014 at 9:52 AM

You can say whatever you want.

You don’t get to control what people think about you after you say it, however.

Good Lt on April 25, 2014 at 9:54 AM

Sorry, 10:12PM

Cleombrotus on April 25, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Didn’t say she couldn’t go there. Didn’t say she should apologize (it would mean nothing anyway). In my opinion, just because she could, didn’t mean she should have – but, being Joan, she had to.

Perpetually offended? Maybe, the perpetually unoffended could lighten up here too. Seems the only thing some are offended by in this thread is someone who didn’t like what came out of her mouth.

I know, lighten up, it was a joke.

underdog on April 25, 2014 at 10:01 AM

FlareCorran on April 25, 2014 at 9:12 AM

I’m not a huge fan of Joan Rivers, but I have to ask: Did you have your sense of humor surgically removed? Or were you missing it from the beginning?

I don’t have a problem with a comedian … as long as they’re an equal opportunity targeter.

jon1979 on April 25, 2014 at 9:46 AM

And that pretty much defines Joan Rivers.

GWB on April 25, 2014 at 10:09 AM

Oh, and I think the joke was funny.

GWB on April 25, 2014 at 10:10 AM

Thread winner.
Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 9:19 AM

No, sorry. That award goes to lonestar1 @ 10:12PM.

Think about it.

Cleombrotus on April 25, 2014 at 9:52 AM

That goes without saying.

It’s also why HotGas’ regular attention to Jon Stewart whenever he says anything remotely critical of Dems or Obama bugs the hell out of me… because his actions are usually troll moves under the veneer of “fairness.”

Likewise, if Joan says anything bad about Obama’s children along the lines of how she insulted Amanda, Gina and Michelle, you can bet that her career would not only be 100% over, but many of the posters on this thread would not lift a finger to defend her.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 10:10 AM

I don’t have a problem with a comedian … as long as they’re an equal opportunity targeter.

jon1979 on April 25, 2014 at 9:46 AM

And that pretty much defines Joan Rivers.

GWB on April 25, 2014 at 10:09 AM

So she has gone after President Obama while most ‘comedians’ of this era haven’t?

Because when equal-opportunity offenders like Jay Leno, Jon Lovitz, Adam Carolla and even Jimmy Kimmel have, it’s been Earth-shattering news.

Heck, it became news when Jimmy Fallon has started to target not only Obama, but Hillary.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 10:19 AM

No, you don’t have to make fun of everything. Human first, comic second.

If making fun is your livelihood, you’ll make mistakes at it occasionally just like everyone who does anything. It is normal. Live with it. Being offended professionally is an idiotic way to go through life, and harms everyone way more than a blundering comedian ever will.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 10:22 AM

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 10:19 AM

I don’t know if she has or not, but Joan has never shirked (that I can recall) from tossing a barb based on who the target was. However, she also isn’t a top name anymore (she’s on a reality show now – that tells you where her career has been), so I have no idea if anyone would notice if she was making jokes about 0bama.

GWB on April 25, 2014 at 10:25 AM

Based on many of the comments on this thread one might conclude that conservatives are lacking in a strong sense of common decency for others and a sense of humor normally attributed to junior high school boys.

JMO under the label of free speech.

katiejane on April 25, 2014 at 10:26 AM

Based on many of the comments on this thread one might conclude that conservatives are lacking in a strong sense of common decency for others and a sense of humor normally attributed to junior high school boys.

JMO under the label of free speech.

Sounds like horsesh*t to me. You think going around all day, every day, telling everyone to shut the he11 up because you’re offended, is all that decent?

Look, I carry no water for Joan Rivers. Truth be told, I think she’s a fool. But anyone who tells the self appointed decency police to get the he11 out of her face is all right in my book. More, please.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 10:39 AM

Sometimes a little discretion goes a long way. It’s called respect.

apeks on April 25, 2014 at 10:40 AM

Let me guess. The only ones offended are liberals…

clearvoice on April 25, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Look, I carry no water for Joan Rivers. Truth be told, I think she’s a fool. But anyone who tells the self appointed decency police to get the he11 out of her face is all right in my book. More, please.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 10:39 AM

Those girls were kidnapped against their will, and subjected to beatings, rape, torture and manipulation by an evil man. They didn’t want, nor deserve, their fate, and have mostly avoided being under ANY spotlight of any sort.

Politicians, however, choose by their own free will to enter the spotlight. So do entertainers.

Instead of defending to a fault such classless trash, why not make jokes about misogynist Dems who perpetrate the “war on women” lie? Instead, you fools are giving them ample ammo to continue that meme.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Let me guess. The only ones offended are liberals…

clearvoice on April 25, 2014 at 10:57 AM

You clearly aren’t from Cleveland.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Sometimes a little discretion goes a long way. It’s called respect.

apeks on April 25, 2014 at 10:40 AM

It is also, for better or worse, not the job of a comedian. Grow some skin.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Instead of defending to a fault such classless trash, why not make jokes about misogynist Dems who perpetrate the “war on women” lie? Instead, you fools are giving them ample ammo to continue that meme.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 10:58 AM

What a stupid thing to say. Dems lie because it’s what they do. It’s all they got. They don’t do it because I, or anyone else, ‘give them ammo.’ When someone’s whole argument is built on lies, the ammo brings itself. Jokes about the so called war on women are being made. And as to ‘classless trash’, I will use my speech to defend anyone who is being shouted down for speaking their piece, no matter who it is, or what it is. If they are wrong, say they’re wrong. But to try to make them apologize for offending?? F*** you.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 11:31 AM

Joan Rivers has deteriorated into the comic version of Todd Achin’.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 8:14 AM

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

oh, … wait … you were serious?

er…

todler on April 25, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Of course it was a joke. What else could it have been? The Ohio situation was merely a way for her to get a laugh about her current living situation. There’s no other reason for referring to it.

blink on April 25, 2014 at 11:42 AM

Which is pretty damn pathetic. And if that’s the current definition of a joke, then our society is pretty much FUBAR.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 11:50 AM

Joan Rivers has deteriorated into the comic version of Todd Achin’.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 8:14 AM

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

oh, … wait … you were serious?

er…

todler on April 25, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Well, Achin’ tried to assert that rape doesn’t exist (and nearly set the pro-life movement back by 50 years), didn’t he? And Joan effectively equates her rich, pampered lifestyle to being raped repeatedly while imprisoned by a sick, evil man for well over a decade.

I rest my case.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 11:56 AM

What a stupid thing to say. Dems lie because it’s what they do. It’s all they got. They don’t do it because I, or anyone else, ‘give them ammo.’ When someone’s whole argument is built on lies, the ammo brings itself. Jokes about the so called war on women are being made. And as to ‘classless trash’, I will use my speech to defend anyone who is being shouted down for speaking their piece, no matter who it is, or what it is. If they are wrong, say they’re wrong. But to try to make them apologize for offending?? F*** you.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 11:31 AM

If this is how you are going to act when someone offers a contrarian viewpoint, then f*** you, too.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 12:07 PM

Well, Achin’ tried to assert that rape doesn’t exist (and nearly set the pro-life movement back by 50 years), didn’t he? And Joan effectively equates her rich, pampered lifestyle to being raped repeatedly while imprisoned by a sick, evil man for well over a decade.

I rest my case.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 11:56 AM

That rage you feel? That’s an example of why we, as a society, do not, say, let children go to x rated movies, or, for matter of that, drive, or serve in the army, or drink alcohol. They are not mature enough to handle it. My advice to you, similarly, is to stay away from comedians until you are more mature. Adulthood is not for the faint hearted, and yours is about as faint as I’ve ever seen.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 12:07 PM

If this is how you are going to act when someone offers a contrarian viewpoint, then f*** you, too.

Hey, I’m not the one who thinks it is the whole world’s job to make sure you can go around unoffended all the time, or else you’re being done wrong. The word for that, buddy boy, is immature f*ck. Grow some skin.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 12:20 PM

If this is how you are going to act when someone offers a contrarian viewpoint, then f*** you, too.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 12:07 PM

You have escalated beyond one who “offers a contrarian viewpoint” to one who is berating those on Hot Air who do not share your contrarian view. I’m guessing the “f*** you” may be do to the latter instead of the former.

Yoop on April 25, 2014 at 12:23 PM

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 12:07 PM

You don’t know that I actually find many insult comics funny. Lewis Black is one of my favorites, even though I vehemently disagree with many of his political views. Same with Frank Conniff. I’m too young to have witnessed Don Rickles at his prime, but would feel the same way.

What you are all doing is ignoring that this really isn’t something that’s actually funny, and Joan did and is doing herself no favors by her presentation of the ‘joke.’

But keep on lying that I’m some type of puritanical rube.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 12:24 PM

You don’t know that I actually find many insult comics funny. Lewis Black is one of my favorites, even though I vehemently disagree with many of his political views. Same with Frank Conniff. I’m too young to have witnessed Don Rickles at his prime, but would feel the same way.

What you are all doing is ignoring that this really isn’t something that’s actually funny, and Joan did and is doing herself no favors by her presentation of the ‘joke.’

But keep on lying that I’m some type of puritanical rube.

Oh, dear… Puritanical? Oh, I’m bleeding. This from someone who thinks a comedian should defer to HIS judgement as to what does or does not do her ‘favors’. The lack of self awareness is dumbfounding.

And by the way, I DID see Don Rickles in his prime.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 12:35 PM

Which is pretty damn pathetic. And if that’s the current definition of a joke, then our society is pretty much FUBAR.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 11:50 AM

This joke is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of offense and comedic feeling which thinks that being offended makes something not funny is much worse. The person who has nothing at which he is willing to laugh, nothing which is more important than his own sense of personal propriety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of smiling even if made to do so by the exertions of better comedians than Joan Rivers.

(Apologies to John Stuart Mill)

GWB on April 25, 2014 at 12:44 PM

What you are all doing is ignoring that this really isn’t something that’s actually funny,

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 12:24 PM

Actually, I do think it’s funny.

Oh, and I don’t think you’re a puritanical rube. I think you’re a fainting pansy with your skirt over your head.

GWB on April 25, 2014 at 12:50 PM

This joke is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of offense and comedic feeling which thinks that being offended makes something not funny is much worse. The person who has nothing at which he is willing to laugh, nothing which is more important than his own sense of personal propriety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of smiling even if made to do so by the exertions of better comedians than Joan Rivers.

Wow. Glad you beat me to replying on that detail, as I was going to. I could not have put it THAT well on my best day.

Dirty Creature on April 25, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Same with Frank Conniff.

I actually got into a very brief Twitter spat for two comments with Frank.

Loved TV’s Frank and his work there. Question if Frank Coniff is really a person or a strange Republican-hating talking points robot.

Dude’s hit or miss.

Good Lt on April 25, 2014 at 1:17 PM

I like how she pokes fun at herself in the new Dodge TV ads.

Ward Cleaver on April 25, 2014 at 1:25 PM

She cracks me up. And that was funny.

bour3 on April 25, 2014 at 2:24 PM

I assume that the Joan Rivers haters above are also actively seeking the death penalty for Don Rickles.

I find it hard to listen to more than 3-5 minutes from either Rivers or Rickles…but they are COMEDIANS!!!

So haters and busybodies should stop taking them seriously and GET A LIFE!!!

landlines on April 25, 2014 at 3:34 PM

I assume that the Joan Rivers haters above are also actively seeking the death penalty for Don Rickles.

I find it hard to listen to more than 3-5 minutes from either Rivers or Rickles…but they are COMEDIANS!!!

So haters and busybodies should stop taking them seriously and GET A LIFE!!!

landlines on April 25, 2014 at 3:34 PM

Not exactly a Joan Rivers fan myself, but … EXACTLY.

There Goes the Neighborhood on April 25, 2014 at 6:19 PM

Sorry, 10:12PM

Cleombrotus on April 25, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Glad you made that correction. Now I don’t have to search for the “TimeTravel” Firefox add-on just to follow a conversation.

(And by Firefox, I mean, of course, PaleMoon.)

There Goes the Neighborhood on April 25, 2014 at 6:23 PM

Thread winner.

Myron Falwell on April 25, 2014 at 9:19 AM

Thread loser.

roy_batty on April 25, 2014 at 7:01 PM

Well, he had a Delores on his show once.

BobMbx on April 24, 2014 at 10:27 PM

……not that there’s anything wrong with that!

cableguy615 on April 25, 2014 at 7:35 PM

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