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Feeling sorry for Michael Richards

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by Tunescribe, Dec 2, 2006.

  1. Tunescribe

    Tunescribe PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #61 Jersey

    http://news.aol.com/entertainment/a...-to-meet-with-targets-of/20061201134509990001

    When is enough, enough? First Michael Richards goes on Letterman to apologize for his rant, then he apologizes in person to Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. Now, he must officially apologize again, in a judge-mediated meeting with the hecklers he insulted, who are being legally represented by GLORIA ALLRED! And, apparently, he'll have to fork over some dough to make the apology stick. Just being within 100 yards of Allred should be punishment enough.

    I take a different view of Richards' rant. I think he initially was trying to provoke within the context of his comedy act in pursuit of being "outrageous," and unwisely let his anger at the hecklers take over. He pushed the boundary too far and it backfired; I'm not convinced he is a racist at heart. But now he must pay, and pay big time, because some audience member had a video camera and made this into a national spectacle.
  2. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think the decline of prejudice goes through stages. 100 year ago, it was quite okay in white society to dress in black face and discriminate in every aspect of life (military service, housing, jobs, relationships, etc.). That gradually became unacceptable, but still 60 years ago it was okay in white society to use the n- word, to discriminate in areas of housing and education, etc. That gradually became unacceptable. Then, 40 years ago, you could no longer use the n- word and blacks had recourse against discrimination. Thus, racism was suppressed. Now, kids grow up in an evironment where racism suppressed and considerable unacceptable. These kids are far more colorblind than the older generations. That's more or less where we are now. Richards' rant is unacceptable if the public at large is to understand that racism is not acceptable in the United States. If Richards had been playing a character, as the patrons first suspected he was, then there wouldn't have been an issue. But, there's no evidence of that, and he hasn't even made that claim. I think what he's doing is good because it's bringing attention to the issue of racism, something that many people like to pretend no longer exists.
  3. Tunescribe

    Tunescribe PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #61 Jersey

    I don't disagree with you, but in Richards' case specifically, how much apology overkill is really necessary? Why should he have to pay money to make it go away?
  4. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Richards can stop when he wants, but he's either trying to turn the publicity into a spark that helps his career or genuinely mortified by what he did. To his credit, he hasn't tried to rationalize his behavior. He's been awfully honest and has allowed himself to be used as a tool to keep alive the discussion of prejudice. The attention this issue is getting will certainly discourage others from making racist diatribes. He's sort of the symbol of racist shame.

    There are a few analogous examples currently posted in this forum: Seymour's post about a Jewish Republican, QuiGon's post about Danny DeVito. These too are attempts to generalize using a specific person as an example. In the case of Richards, it's getting more publicity because he is helping and his rant was especially mediagenic, and the issue of racism is a powerful one.
  5. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    I have no idea why this is a financial issue in any way. How much he wants/doesn't want to apologize is up to him and it's up to the public how they want to support him thereafter. There was no pain and suffering that needs a financial settlement, however. If Richards chooses to pay money that's his choice I guess. But that kind of accusation is what perpetuates racism. He called you a name. Wah, get over it.
  6. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    No Comment
    :bricks:
  7. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    You know, Richards was an idiot for his rant. Clearly the guy cannot handle being heckled during live shows. I heard on the radio he went nuts once before under similar circumstances. His words were unacceptable, but these clowns who heckled him deserve nothing more than an apology. That they want money speaks volumes of their charactor, and how important the N word was to them. They're not concerned with racism, they're concerned with Benjamins. Whenever some idiots hire a lawyer to sue, I toss up a red flag. What's more here is that these guys heckled a performer. It's not like they were just sitting their watching the show and minding their own business. Obvioulsy Richards remarks were over the top, but lets not forget the fact that these two idiots did provoke Richards to begin with. Anyhow, if these clowns were really sincere about racism, then they'd ask he donate money to a charity or something, or do something other than fatten their pockets and their lawyers.
  8. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Do we know they want money? From what I've seen, it's only Richards lawyer who said a cash settlement could be in the works. Maybe Richards will offer to refund their expenses for that night at the club or maybe as a gesture of apology make a donation to some organization. I'm not saying it's impossible that the victims of his rant are demanding money. It might be within their rights. After all, if you were sitting a club and the MC started point and yelling derogatory things at you, wouldn't you feel embarrassed, even humiliated? So much for victims rights? Does it not apply to black people?
  9. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    They hired a lawyer, and I read "cash settlement" is lots of headlines. I hope they don't sue, and make him donate to a cause instead. Personally, thats what I would do. I'm very against the sue, sue, sue crowd. Obvioulsy when actual injury or loss is experienced, then compensation is due. It's this mental angiush crap that I have no tolerance for.

    FYI, the club owner refunded everyones money the night of the fiasco. I saw him on TV doing an interview and he was truly appoligetic.

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