Thoughtcrime averted: TV network to cut Clint Eastwood's joke about Caitlyn Jenner at awards show

You’ve got to be mighty quick to the memory hole to crimestop effectively in the digital age. Thanks to fast work by Spike TV, this impure thought was filtered out before it could ever contaminate the public.

For real, I don’t understand what the “diss” here is.

This is so disappointing. While introducing Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson at Spike TV’s Guys Choice Awards on June 6, Clint Eastwood totally mocked Caitlyn Jenner. On a positive note, the crowd groaned and refused to laugh at the insensitive joke. Find out all the details here.

Clint Eastwood now joins the ever-growing list of celebrities who have mocked Caitlyn Jenner, 65, since her transition. During the taping of Spike TV’s Guys Choice Awards on June 6, the 85-year-old dissed Caitlyn while introducing Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. It was really insensitive and we hope it’s not included in the show, when it airs on June 18.

As Clint was introducing The Rock, he compared the San Andreas star to former athletes who have become actors, like “Jim Brown and Caitlyn Somebody…,” according to an eyewitness. Instead of laughing, the crowd groaned, and Clint said that he knew the joke wouldn’t work when he brought it up to the show’s producers. (You think?!)

An executive at Spike TV promised USA Today that the line will be removed before the show airs. Now, tell me: Where’s the insult? Is it the idea that Jenner’s “acting” in his new identity as “Caitlyn”? Because I’m not sure Eastwood meant it that way. I think he may have meant it literally: If you’re under the age of 50, you know Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner mainly as the long-suffering stepdad on the Kardashians’ pretend-reality show, not as the guy who won gold in 1976. He’s famous nowadays mainly as an actor, or was until very recently. Eastwood’s joke is either a goof on Jenner’s sudden media ubiquity by pretending to forget his last name or he’s having fun with Johnson by suggesting he might be transgender someday too. Either way, there’s no “mockery,” except to the extent the author wanted to use that word and couldn’t put together an argument to back it up.

You know what Eastwood’s guilty of? He’s guilty of trying to use Jenner as a punchline, irrespective of what the point of the joke is. And that really is a thoughtcrime first-degree, bordering on blasphemy, in the current media climate. Brendan O’Neill:

There is a palpable religiosity to the wild hailing of Bruce/Caitlyn as a modern-day saint, a Virgin Mary with testicles. Within four hours, more than a million people were following Bruce/Caitlyn’s new Twitter account, hanging on her words like the expectant horde waiting for Moses at the foot of Mount Sinai. Her every utterance, all banal celeb-speak, was retweeted tens of thousands of times. Celebs and commentators greeted her as a kind of messiah. ‘We’ve been waiting for you with open arms’, said an overexcited editor at Buzzfeed. Across the Twittersphere Caitlyn was worshipped as a ‘goddess’, a ‘goddess in human form’, a ‘goddess made manifest on Earth’…

The worship of Caitlyn, and the hectoring of anyone who refuses to scrape before her icon, has graphically exposed the intolerant edge to trans thinking. The insistence that we not only refer to Bruce/Caitlyn as ‘she’ but also project this backwards – recognising, in the words of the Guardian, that she has ‘always been a woman’ – is borderline Orwellian. It’s a rewriting of history, a memory-holing of old inconvenient facts. Strikingly, the Guardian writer says people like Bruce/Caitlyn have ‘always been women… even when they were “fathering” children’. Notice it’s the ‘fathering’ bit that is in scare quotes, suggesting it wasn’t real, while the description of Bruce as a woman is treated as an incontestable truth. War is peace, freedom is slavery, man is woman.

Maybe that’s the “diss” — reminding people that Jenner used to be an athlete, which necessarily reminds them that he used to identify as a man. I wonder how long it’ll be before bien-pensants decide that using photos of him pre-transition should be frowned upon, regardless of the context in which the photo is used. Ironically, that may be more of a problem for the Kardashian empire than for, say, ESPN: The most voluminous image archive of Caitlyn as Bruce has to be the first few years of their reality series. How do they go about memory-holing that without erasing him from the show?

On a completely, totally unrelated note, here’s Jerry Seinfeld marveling at how progressivism has already cannibalized comedy on campuses. Compare what he says about his daughter using words she doesn’t understand with the huffing about “mockery” and “insensitivity” in the excerpt above.

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David Strom 8:31 AM on October 02, 2022