September 29, 2020

BY SARA HANAFI

Over the past couple of weeks, the media has once again tried to pressure celebrities to issue apologies for some humourous thing they said. I can’t be the only one who’s sick of hearing about them.

The most recent celebrities to come under fire are Joan Rivers and Jim Carrey.

Rivers made a joke during her TV show Fashion Police when she was critiquing German supermodel Heidi Klum’s dress, saying, “The last time a German looked this hot was when they were pushing Jews into the ovens.”

The Anti-Defamation League demanded she apologize for the “vulgar and offensive joke to Jews and Holocaust survivors,” but Rivers, who is Jewish, refused and told the media that she uses humour to remind people of the event.

Similarly, Carrey was asked to apologize for being in a Funny or Die video that poked fun at pro-gun activists. The video, which was posted on YouTube and which warned of the dangers of having a gun, prompted criticism from Fox News that led to a huge media backlash.

Carrey wouldn’t issue an apology, but instead released a statement saying, “Fux News (sic) will be remembered as nothing more than a giant culture fart that no amount of Garlique could cure,” which only fueled the fire more.

But why should celebrities have to apologize for what they say? Are we as a society so sensitive that we can’t laugh at a simple skit anymore? I understand becoming a more tolerant society, but a line must be drawn somewhere.

It’s just a little bit of humour. Celebrities have as much right to say what they please as anyone else, regardless of the fact that they have a much bigger audience. An off-comment every once in a while should be taken with a grain of salt. Instead, we have reporters (who you would think have better things to be writing about) chasing after celebrities and demanding a retraction for the most inane reasons.

And it isn’t just celebrities who are under fire. Any writer, musician, or public figure who says something that doesn’t please everyone has to take back what he or she said.

It’s ridiculous to expect a person to always be perfectly politically correct, and quite frankly, it’s boring. If Joan Rivers was told to apologize for every offensive statement she made, she would never have had a career as a comedienne.

People need to lighten up, learn to take a joke, and stop forcing explanations from others who are speaking their mind.