My Response to Kathy Griffin: Comedy and Responsibility

This is a letter with a simple message for Kathy Griffin. It is not meant to be provocative, but it is meant to inspire provocative thought.

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Dear Kathy Griffin,

You are a comedian. Your job is to make people laugh. You are creative, and your job is to seek out inspiring new content. And nobody wants to prevent you from doing that. After all, you must be somewhat proficient in the field if you had such a platform to begin with. I personally have not had much exposure to your work, and I am not sure whether I will endeavor to gain that exposure now, but don’t take it personally. You have the right to convey your personal sense of what comedy is, just as every American does, and they have every right to disengage with you or your comedy anymore. Nobody is claiming that right from you, even if they are taking their business elsewhere. More importantly, I personally am convinced that you have lost a copious amount opportunities because of how you have handled this situation in its entirety, as they outweigh the actual provocative photo that you published.

Everybody makes mistakes—nobody is perfect. Perfection is unattainable, but when you make a gargantuan error, you must be willing to correct it. Sure, you acknowledged it, but your apology assumed a particular type of artificiality that became intensified when you pushed all of the blame onto others. This is not how you handle a mistake. Instead, it resonates as proof that you are unable to accept that it was a mistake in the first place. It shows immaturity and a pre-adolescent handling of the circumstances that have since turned against your favor. This is an issue that has begun to plague America. Responsibility is critical to professional success—even in comedy. Comedians aren’t exempt from consequence, just as I am not void of responsibility for my performance at my job. You always need to consider how people will react to your decisions—it is rather selfish to fail to do so. After all, we don’t live in this world alone, do we? It’d be quite boring if we did.

This is not to say that you are a terrible person; I just want you to know that the solution is not to make another mistake. You have the unfortunate punishment of being in the spotlight, and I don’t consider myself to be “better” than you; if anything, I am just more fortunate that my mistakes haven’t been broadcasted like yours have. But please, please, don’t pretend that you didn’t make a mistake. Acknowledge it and receive the consequences it may bring on your career. Seek reconciliation, not reconsideration.

On to the heart of the matter, I would like to question why you thought this would be an innovative idea in the first place. It’s not your fault, even if you are contributing heavily to the problem. Comedy is better served when it seeks to attack with wordplay and quick wit as opposed to death and destruction. It’s not completely your fault, Ms. Griffin, that comedy has evolved into such a demonic tool. Comedy is wonderful until you misuse it. Ms. Griffin, as a member of the mainstream media, you should be well-aware that people can take offense to things they don’t like. So why would you take that a step farther, especially with the ubiquitous presence of ISIS? Ms. Griffin, this joke is just one failed act within a ravishingly inhumane comedy routine. Americans must learn to take responsibility for their actions before it is too late. Yes, Ms. Griffin, you are not completely to blame for this mentality, but you have succumbed to it, and now this is your mess to clean up.

As for Mr. Trump, I didn’t vote for him, nor do I condone everything he says and does, but he is viciously attacked whenever he makes a mistake. Now, I fear, you are simply receiving a taste of your own medicine. You are now in the same boat as Donald Trump. Now that is funny.

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