Comedian and actor Tim Allen spoke out against the “thought police” and political correctness culture, suggesting it’s an “alarming thing for comedians.”
Allen, a stand-up comedian who stars in the Fox program “Last Man Standing,” found agreement on the issue with Joy Behar, a former comedian herself and a co-host on “The View.”
“There’s a PC culture out there, makes it really hard,” Behar said to Allen, who was a guest on the show.
“I think my act, if I ever brought that old act back, I’d be driven out of town.”
Allen expressed agreement, noting that material from legendary comedians like Lenny Bruce and Richard Pryor, both of whom are deceased, would offend modern-day audiences.
“What I gotta do sometimes is explain — which I hate — in big arenas, that this is a thought police thing, and I do not like it. But when I use these words, this is my intent behind those words,” Allen added.
“So as long as you understand my intent — I still get people: ‘Well, just don’t say it,’ and I said ‘I’m not going to do that,'” he said, using a mocking voice as he relayed what his critics tell him.
Behar then pointed out that people will still “take it out of context and put it on Twitter, or put it on Facebook.”
Allen responded: “I’m surprised they haven’t.”
“I do use some provocative words, but I tell them it’s words I really got from my parents. They said this stuff,” he added.
The actor went on to call the situation “alarming.”
“And I can’t even say it here. I can’t even point to it. It is an alarming thing for comedians,” he said, noting that most of his material is about “family and kids and growing up.”
Allen provided an example of how material that some audiences enjoy doesn’t go over as well in other parts of the country.
He talked about how his grandmother would mock him as a “little Democrat” because “I stole money from my parents, I never worked.”
In Miami, he said, people “laugh and cheer” at this joke.
In Reading, Pennsylvania, they don’t like it as much.
“Why Reading?” Behar asked.
“Well, it’s a little bit more Democratic,” Allen replied.
This is not the first time Allen has criticized political correctness.
“I think it’s funny to make fun of people that are full of themselves,” he told IndieWire in November 2018. “Liberals have a very small window of sense of humor about themselves, so I love poking at it.”
“Two years ago, it was the conservatives, or whatever it is. But right now liberals, particularly progressives, hide behind large concepts. If you don’t agree with them, if you don’t agree with that position, then you hate women, and you hate gay people, and you hate pro-choice people, whatever.”
And Allen is not alone among comedians in expressing these sentiments.
In recent weeks, famed comics like Dave Chappelle, Marlon Wayans and Keegan-Michael Key have also indicated that outrage over comedy has become absurd.
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