Why men aren’t funny

If November 2016 was a study in anguish for many, November 2017 is a study in contrasts. (Well, and anguish.) At the very time when, it seems, Americans have finally begun to take sexual predation seriously and impose meaningful consequences on men who abuse their power, the far right has shot off in the opposite direction like a dog with a ham in its mouth.

Sure, previously untouchable cultural behemoths like Harvey Weinstein and Louis C.K. are watching their legacies crumble around them, but, in the same news cycle, Republicans are smashing their expensive coffee makers in defense of a man who is alleged to have sexually assaulted minors and the president of the United States has been accused of sexual misconduct so many times that the accusations have their own Wikipedia page. Newton’s Third Law, I guess.

It has been particularly illuminating to watch the comedy community process the toppling of one of its sacred man-boys. Many people — myself included, at one time — consider Louis C.K. to be the greatest living stand-up comic, an astute, self-effacing, disgusting, loving dad who managed to win over not just the morning talk radio boys’ club but tougher crowds like feminists and art snobs (maybe because none of us listened to what he was saying to the talk radio boys’ club).