Like many of you, I was shocked to see allegations that My Favorite Comedian is a pervert, even though, as a big fan of My Favorite Comedian, I’ve heard rumors about his behavior for years that I chose to disregard, often tweeting angry things at the “journalists” who spread them.
But I don’t think we should rush to judgement without hearing both sides.
The fact is, My Favorite Comedian is my favorite comedian, and so I don’t want to feel guilty about enjoying and monetarily supporting his work or have to stop doing so. I also don’t want to ask myself what, if anything, it says about me that I am a huge fan of someone who could do something like this, because that makes me feel uncomfortable. And when you think about it, the things My Favorite Comedian is accused of doing, which I will continue to say are mere allegations even though My Favorite Comedian has admitted they are true, aren’t actually all that bad.
Even if I choose to believe that allegations made by several women, independent of each other and yet nearly identical, are true, I think we must ask ourselves: was a crime actually committed? I don’t think so. My Favorite Comedian asked for permission to do what he did, and those multiple women on separate occasions could have said no. That’s what I would have done if I were in their shoes and therefore how I think everyone should behave, despite the fact that I have never been in such a position myself and so can only guess how I would respond. And I choose to assume I would do so in a way that makes My Favorite Comedian look as innocent as possible and the women accusing him look like bitter and vengeful honey pots. Think about it: Why wouldn’t woman reject an extremely powerful and influential man who could destroy everything she’s worked so hard for, simply because she hurt his feelings? It just doesn’t make sense. That I have also done things to women because I assumed that their awkward laughter or lack of response was consent has nothing to do with why I feel this way.
We must also ask ourselves if we should then throw out My Favorite Comedian’s body of work if the things he has admitted to doing are even true. Is it really fair to associate someone’s entire professional career with what he does in his personal life? Can we not separate the man from his hilarious stand-up routines, which, we now know, incorporate his alleged unsavory actions? Think about it: Would you want to be fired from your job just because of something you allegedly did repeatedly and over the course of several years in your off time? That doesn’t seem very fair or American to me, and it’s not just because I’m absolutely terrified that some of my own actions might come back to haunt me and ruin my career, just as they have ruined the careers of my victims.
Folks, My Favorite Comedian isn’t any less funny or brilliant just because he maybe made a few women feel uncomfortable and then, when they spoke out, had his extremely powerful manager blacklist them. I also don’t want to place any blame whatsoever on the clients of that manager who I am also a fan of, just because they apparently went along with this and have either defended My Favorite Comedian, claimed they knew nothing of the things he is accused of doing, or whose silence on the matter has been deafening, even as some of them market themselves as big supporters of women in general.
Finally: what about My Favorite Comedian’s co-workers and family? Should they be punished because a few women accused their spouse/father/boss of something that’s honestly pretty minor when you compare it to things other people I don’t like as much have done, and by phrasing it this way I place the blame solely on the accusers? Guess what: Some of the people who lost their jobs after cable channels and streaming services cancelled My Favorite Comedian’s projects are WOMEN. Bet you didn’t think about that! I did, because I care about the careers of women when they are tied to the career of My Favorite Comedian and it’s convenient to my argument. I love, respect, and support most women. I have daughters.
I conclude by leaving the door open to changing my mind if more and increasingly serious allegations about My Favorite Comedian come to light, or if a lot of people get mad at me and it serves me best to say I was wrong.