New Covid

I was just talking to an English musician who is afraid to go on the road. Covid is raging, people aren’t wearing masks and he doesn’t trust the government. Which has pooh-poohed and botched the Covid response:

“Covid: UK’s early response worst public health failure ever, MPs say”:

As you will remember, it was just a month ago or so that Covid infections suddenly dropped in the U.K., no one knew why, maybe it was never going to come back. But now:

“UK government accused of being ‘willfully negligent’ as Covid cases mount”:

“On Thursday it reported 52,009 new infections, the highest mark since July. 

The government has nonetheless ruled out moving to its ‘Plan B’ approach, which would see the introduction of vaccine passports and mandates in line with many European countries.

‘We are sticking with our plan,’ Boris Johnson said Thursday. ‘The numbers of infections are high but we are within the parameters of what the predictions were.’

But in a scathing intervention on Wednesday, the British Medical Association (BMA) said Johnson’s government ‘has taken its foot off the brake, giving the impression that the pandemic is behind us and that life has returned to normal.'”

And the rest of Europe is freaking out:

“UK’s neighbours criticise Covid policies as cases begin to surge across EU – Several European nations have questioned British response but there are growing signs of fresh wave across continent”

But it’s always sunny in Philadelphia, er, the United States, because we’re different, we’re immune, right.

It wasn’t like we didn’t get a heads-up on the Delta variant. It was crawling all over the U.K. and Europe before it got here. And it was here for quite a while before anybody took action. And now there’s a new variant. As a matter of fact, it’s already here:

“COVID-19: New, infectious strain of Delta variant detected in the US”:

Rust never sleeps, nor does Covid. You might be out living your life willy-nilly, but Covid keeps mutating and each new iteration is MORE TRANSMISSIBLE!

But we can’t take further action in the U.S. because of people’s FREEDOM!

Yeah, right.

And then there’s that bozo Washington State football coach Nick Rolovich who decided to get fired rather than get vaccinated. Now he’s suing for illegal termination:

Ain’t that America. No one can lose out. Everyone thinks their way will prevail. You see Rolovich is a “devout” Catholic, and therefore he deserves an exemption.

What hogwash.

You’ve got to read this article:

“Many are searching for vaccine mandate loopholes. These are the people trying to stop them.”:

“Almost all of Troup’s applicants for religious exemptions objected to taking a vaccine developed using fetal cell lines (whose origins can be traced back to cells from electively aborted fetuses several decades ago). So Troup and his team devised a strategy: Those employees would have to sign an agreement not to take any other medical treatments developed using fetal cell lines. Among the 28 medications on the list: Tylenol. Motrin. Preparation H. Claritin. Benadryl. Tums.”

“‘I very gently and politely asked, “Well, you know, tell me: What medicines on that list…do you think were not developed with fetal cells or tested on fetal cells?”‘ Troup recalls. ‘The response was this diatribe about how evil the vaccine was, how much harm it causes, how data and reports are being covered up. Which told me that it really wasn’t about fetal cells at all. It’s all about a vaccine hesitancy.'”

In other words, the claimed religious exemptions are just b.s. And we should call everybody on their b.s. I’m sick and tired of the minority holding sway over the majority.

Fewer than 13% of Americans are anti-vaccine: This happens again and again, with guns, abortion, taxes on the rich, the majority supports the foregoing, but it never ever goes their way. You think there’s not pent-up anger?

And the both sides media gives attention to anybody who causes a ruckus, who expounds upon their bogus position loudly, when the truth is they should be ignored or their position skewered.

It’s hard to have faith in America today. Manchin takes money from fossil fuel companies and therefore there can’t be strict climate controls. Yes, that’s America, where companies are not only people, they’re immune to the long hand of the government. People in West Virginia want what’s in Biden’s infrastructure bill:

“In deep red West Virginia, Biden’s $3.5tn spending proposal is immensely popular – Working-class people – even Trump voters – understand the Build Back Better plan will benefit them”:

And then there’s the inane Republican January 6th position. Nothing happened, there is no need to investigate…BUT WE SAW IT WITH OUR OWN TWO EYES!

As for Steve Bannon… That’s what I want to do, next time I get a traffic ticket, just not show up. Maybe I’ll claim a religious exemption when they come after me. Or sue saying I should be paid by the police for stopping me. Everything up is down.

And most of America knows it.

But this is the same America playing by the rules while the rest do not.

Do you know why Covid raged in the south over the summer? BECAUSE EVERYBODY WENT INSIDE! You need the A/C to survive. And as soon as the weather cooled, they went back outside and infection rates went down. And then it got cold again in the north and people went inside, and BINGO!, increased infection rates, especially amongst the unvaccinated.

But the vaccines don’t work, you know that, right? And they kill your immune system and by December everybody who gets a booster will no longer have an immune system. PEOPLE E-MAIL ME THIS IDIOCY EACH AND EVERY DAY! They’re in a paper war, albeit online. There are endless sites preaching this nonsense. If you believed these people you’d think millions of people have died from the vaccine and it’s new and experimental and while we’re at it, we should eliminate the need for any vaccines, while we hobble government’s right to take action. No masks, no mandates… It would be utterly laughable if it wasn’t so scary.

So America is open for business. And since the nincompoops are not abiding by the rules, the rest of the population shrugs its shoulders and gives up too. It’s like letting the wild child in school ride herd over the rest of the students, and you know that never happens, because there are CONSEQUENCES! Actually, there are consequences for the unvaccinated, they could die. But the fact that the vaccinated can die too means the vaccine doesn’t work. But the truth is the unvaccinated get infected and die at a much higher rate. And the vaccinated are infectious, can spread Covid, for a much shorter period of time than the unvaxxed. But good luck convincing these flat-earthers like Kyrie Irving of the truth, which is everywhere if you just look. But oh no, better to do your own research than depend upon experts. I’ve got it, you’d rather fly in a plane built by Facebook followers. Or maybe go to their health clinic. THEY DON’T EXIST! No one is holding them back, the main problem is THEY’VE GOT NO EXPERTISE!

So now what happens.

Well, we need more mandates and vaccine cards/documentation. But we can’t even get voting laws passed, never mind the infrastructure bill, because one party keeps on saying no and Manchin and Sinema are whored-out to their donors as opposed to their constituents. After all, you can’t continue to win without money!

We’ve got to close the window on these crybabies, like they do in reasonable countries, like France. The country is no longer a punch line. You can go unvaxxed, BUT YOU JUST CAN’T GO ANYWHERE! It’s your CHOICE! Why can’t we have the same damn thing in America?

Then there’s that story that Paul Stanley’s guitar tech died of Covid, HE FAKED HIS VACCINATION CARD! That was on the radio. Don’t take it to the bank without further confirmation. But the bottom line is the guy did have Covid and he did die. How’d you like to work with that prick?

And it’s not only the wingnuts, it’s the above the law rich too:

“Broadway folks bragged about forging COVID tests to go to Tonys parties”:

Seems like you’re a sucker if you obey the rules.

Meanwhile, Biden is afraid of his shadow while the right wing press keeps going on about the drop in his approval ratings…WHICH THEY’RE CAUSING! It’s the do-nothing right wing congresspeople who are doing their best to shut down the government, LITERALLY!

And no one can see further than their nose. The big problems? We can’t afford to tackle them. This is like the jerk who refuses to buy health insurance and then gets into a major accident or gets cancer or… Oops! Then we end up taking care of this freeloader. But who is going to take care of us on climate change… NOBODY! And it’s happening while we speak:

“Climate Change Poses a Widening Threat to National Security – Intelligence and defense agencies issued reports warning that the warming planet will increase strife between countries and spur migration.”

It seems like the goal of many Americans is to be an ostrich, they never learned this parable in school. Then again, many believe God will save them, you know, that old powerful man in the sky. And you’ve got to know, just like they want monoclonal antibodies, just like when they go to the hospital to treat their infection, they want a complete pass when they wake up and need science. They’re picking and choosing. Let’s see, why don’t we let Boeing pick and choose which parts they install in the airplane. As a matter of fact, Boeing is screwing up building their planes, and who is holding them to account? THE GOVERNMENT! Which wastes all your tax money and should be drowned in the bathtub. Yeah, right.

So Covid could die out. It’s possible. But past is prologue, and looking at the U.K….it appears that a new wave is on the horizon, HOLD ON, IT’S COMING!

And no one is immune.

“One in three music industry jobs were lost during pandemic”:

“One in three jobs in the British music industry were lost during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a report from trade body UK Music.

The research said there were 69,000 fewer jobs in music in 2020 than in 2019 – a drop of 35% – due to the ‘devastating impact’ of coronavirus.”

You may want to go to the show, but there may be no show to go to! Ticket sales have slowed to a crawl, so many of the big acts are delaying their tours.

Yes, we live in a society, networked, where the actions of one affect the actions of another. You won’t get vaccinated so other people are scared to go to the show and then there is no show… You call this victory?

Strict mandates. Vax cards. Masks. That’s the only way to improve the situation.

Do I expect this to happen?


Little Steven-This Week’s Podcast

Stevie Van Zandt, aka “Miami Steve,” aka “Little Steven,” aka “Silvio Dante,” has written an autobiography, “Unrequited Infatuations.” We dig into the process of writing the book, and we also cover the landscape from New Jersey…back to New Jersey! Growing up with the radio, the greatness of the Beatles, struggling in Asbury Park, failing to make the E Street Band, going straight and doing construction, playing the oldies circuit, making the E Street Band, going solo, returning to the E Street Band and appearing in “The Sopranos” and… Steven says he’s not good with money, but he’s had a jam-packed career, his life is rich with experiences, listen as we go deep!

More Chappelle

This is hysterical! My inbox is blowing up! I don’t get anywhere near this amount of response when I write about music. As George Drakoulias said to me on the Staples Center floor, he used to argue about records, not anymore. How did the cultural zeitgeist switch so much? Did music let us down or is it just that issues of gender and democracy have more gravitas.

Which is what Dave Chappelle is trying to address here, the society we live in.

I watched it.

But first I started listening in the car on my drive back from Santa Monica, starting around the recommended 55:00, when Chappelle goes deep, focusing on the trans comedian. And what did I think? WHAT IS ALL THE HOOPLA ABOUT! I mean this has been in the news for days and no one has actually written what Chappelle actually said?

Of course there is cherry-picking. Just like they do on the right. But in context, Chappelle gets a pass. The fact that trans people want him canceled is ridiculous.

Not that I think Chappelle needs to be applauded, to a great degree he’s appealing to a dumbed-down public that believes it’s oppressed when it is reaping the fruits, like white men. Then again, affirmative action is anathema, unless it is for white people!

So I got home and I started watching from the beginning. I was cruising along and then Chappelle made a very funny but quite offensive joke about Jews and Israel. And I found it funny that there was no blowback about this. I mean usually the ADL is on this stuff. So I’m thinking, Sarah Silverman made that absolutely brilliant joke about Asian people, that got her blowback, and it was years ago. It was an intellectual twist couched in stupidity and when you thought about it you couldn’t stop laughing, it’s still hilarious today. Then again, Silverman wasn’t putting down Asians.

So the longer I watched “The Closer,” the less funny and interesting it became. I mean the man doth protest too much. That’s the nature of being a celebrity, the online hate. And the fact that he admits it gets to him, does that help the problem at all? A slew of articles in “The Wall Street Journal” have had a much greater effect. But there is no celebrity involved in that story, except for Mark Zuckerberg, and people want his money, maybe even his power, but they don’t want to hang out with him and have sex, which is the essence of a big time celebrity. They radiate a charisma that draws you to them.

So the e-mail is flowing and suddenly I’m confronted with the issue confronting the antivaxxers. Do I double down on my position or am I open to saying I’m wrong.


Not about everything, but about the trans brouhaha re the special. I’ll stand by a lot of peripheral things I said, but I don’t want to muddy the water, I was wrong, plain and simple.

And that’s the most important thing, but even more interesting was the feeling of belonging. Seemed like everybody had seen the special, I wanted to be a member of the club, so I could talk about it further. And I’ve learned seemingly better than Chappelle that you can’t pay attention to the feedback, the rabble-rousers. I mean come on, you’re Dave Chappelle and they’re..?

As for Twitter not being a real place. Oh yes it is, it may be virtual but it’s patently real. The news media keeps saying it’s a self-selecting society whilst addicted and quoting from it. That’s the world we now live in, where what happens online is seemingly always more interesting than real life. After all you can cater your online time to your interests. So why in hell did Netflix not use the online tools to spread the message?

It would have been very simple. Post an excerpt of the special on YouTube. It would have quieted people, put the protesters in perspective. But so worried about putting stuff outside the paywall, it didn’t. Meanwhile, HBO posted John Oliver’s complete episodes on YouTube and Bill Maher’s show is available as a free podcast moments after it finishes airing. Want to clear the air? Put a little sunlight on the issue.

And I will say if you’re a minority it’s frustrating to be talked down to by white males time and time again, it’s like you don’t even count. It’s kind of like Killer Mike on “Real Time” a couple of weeks ago. Mike said Blacks got Biden elected, they performed their magic and leveled the playing field in the Senate. But everything they were promised in return never arrived. Free community college, free child care… No, those must be secondary to the white issues, they’ve got to take one for the team. Huh? The Blacks vote time and again for Democrats and then they’re told to get in the back of the bus.

Which is kind of Chappelle’s point re the women’s movement. He’s got sympathy for Black people first. But he also understands the women’s plight better than they do. He says celebrities should fire their agents and enable the woman in the mailroom, who can’t get ahead. Look at LeBron James, he’s got a team of Blacks from his hometown, led by his childhood friend Maverick Carter, and he seems to be doing better than all his contemporaries. Carter wasn’t born into the business, but he was willing to learn, after all celebrity/Hollywood business is not rocket science. Oftentimes, it’s just a matter of leverage, albeit with bullying.

So Chappelle’s ultimate point, that the minority groups are too strident and they’re doing their cause a disservice? I hear it. He’s right about the trans people at Netflix. But why is the kerfuffle being kept alive in the press. Where people who don’t watch the special spend their time and get a misimpression. Are these scribes just reporting, or is there an underlying issue…do they really just want to preach to their subscribers?

Can we never talk about trans people again, is the whole topic taboo?


Then again, the suits are scared of the talent, if the talent is big enough, it has huge leverage and opportunity. Then again, Chappelle should make more money than most of the suits, he’s the one drawing eyeballs. I mean Reed Hastings came up with the concept of Netflix, but why do the suits with little creativity end up richer than the talent, always?

Do I recommend you watch the Chappelle special?

You don’t need to. Unless you want to weigh in on this subject, i.e. the trans debate, whether Chappelle should be canceled.

And Chappelle really saves himself with his ending bit, about the trans comedian, but before that you’ll wince at times. Not that he should not be able to say what he does, but to a degree he’s fanning the flames of biased people. First and foremost the Chappelle fans, who believe he can do no wrong. I think it’s fine to blow back, and people should. I mean this is his whole routine, talking about how hard it is to be a comedian and speak your truth? Not that there aren’t great observations contained therein, but the ultimate spin…this is my last special for a while, but I’ve just got to tell you how I’ve been burdened and… It’s like the special doesn’t exist in context, it’s just for the people who watch it.

And that would be fine, except what are the basic precepts of this audience?

In the old pre-internet days, never mind the pre-cable days, we would all consume the same material and then weigh in on it. Not that I want to go back to those days, I prefer the cornucopia of content. But society has suffered, we’re no longer in it together, the truth cannot reach everybody.

Like there’s no way in hell Chappelle should be canceled for this special.

But, Netflix could have done a much better job of defending him.

And then there’s the issue of the trans protests. I get it, woke society, everybody’s got to lay off. But, once again, there is a line, where is it? It’s obviously not at Chappelle in this special, but elsewhere transphobia is rampant, and it’s not the benign transphobia Chappelle labels himself with.

So what we’ve got is a discussion point.

And informed and uninformed.

And a lack of sunshine on the underlying product.

It’s a microcosm of America in general.

And I was honest in saying I hadn’t watched the special. But no one caught that point, they equated me with the rest of the bloviators who comment on that which they’re unaware of. THAT WAS EXACTLY MY POINT! That didn’t make me right, but no one could set aside their biases for a minute and look at the issue from my perspective. If they disagreed thereafter, fine with me. But no, I’ve got scores and scores of e-mails saying WATCH THE SPECIAL! That doesn’t convince antivaxxers to get the jab, they just dig in deeper.

I won’t dig in deeper. I’ll try to crawl out of the hole I dug. I was wrong, full stop.

But the issues remain.

The Chappelle Kerfuffle

It’s not going to hurt Netflix.

Netflix is too big, too desirable, too embedded in people’s lives to be abandoned, to be canceled. In this way it’s like Amazon or Walmart or Facebook. We constantly hear about their deleterious effects, boycotts are initiated, but the enterprise is just too good, it fulfills a need that the public can’t get satisfied elsewhere.

Not that I’ve seen Chappelle’s special.

Reminds me of Republicans testifying about records and movies that they have not heard or seen. So I’ve been delaying weighing in until I watched the special. But I just cannot do it, I just don’t find Chappelle that funny anymore, I don’t get it. So he stands on stage and riffs, sounding like he’s making it up as he goes. There are few laugh out loud punch lines. And it’s not like it’s uber-intellectual, it’s not like you’re laughing in your head, albeit silently. Chappelle is neither George Carlin nor Richard Pryor, the two best comedians of my lifetime. Then again, he created a beloved TV show, that I also didn’t watch, and then gave the middle finger to the man, becoming a cultural icon.


Do I have a problem with Chappelle’s success? Of course not. Do I think he should be censored? Of course not. But then it gets more complicated.

If Netflix fires Chappelle he’ll just go somewhere else, for more money. Chappelle is a cornerstone of the outlet’s programming, the linchpin of its comedy division, a halo that brings other comedians into the fold. Remember when all comedy was on HBO? Now it’s on Netflix. And it could go somewhere else, assuming someone was willing to pay. And when you’re building a company if you’re cheap, you’re doomed.

So for months we had to hear prognosticators say that Netflix was doomed, it was losing market share, the engine was starting to sputter. And then yesterday it exceeds projections, adds 4.4 million subscribers. Proving that if you want to know what is going on in a company, talk to those in the field, especially when it’s a new field. Too often general reporters weigh in and their opinions are worthless. Bottom line? It’s about hit product. Sure, Netflix lost “The Office.” And “Friends.” They’re blue chips, the “Bonanza” and “Seinfeld” of their era. But “Bonanza” eventually faded and “Seinfeld” is now on Netflix and anybody in the visual entertainment medium knows that it’s about new product, new hit product, ergo “Squid Game,” the most talked about show on the flat screen for months. Ultimately the most viewed show on Netflix ever. People signed up to watch it. How many will sign off? Of course there are professional cancelers, but the truth is most people forget to cancel until they’re confronted with the bill, if then, then again, many people find they like the service and stay. And you keep them with more new product. Something that HBO Max and Disney+ fall down on, never mind the emaciated Apple TV+.

So, Chappelle makes anti-trans comments.

Well the truth is trans people are not a majority of the public, which you might think based on the attention they receive. Then again, that does not mean they don’t deserve protection. How many handicapped people are there? But we still have cutouts in sidewalks and bars in bathroom stalls and that’s what a good society does, take care of all of its citizens.

But that does not mean Chappelle’s words have no influence.

It’s been established that homophobia is rampant in the Black community. By putting down, making fun of trans people, you’re playing into people’s biases. How can it be that Morgan Wallen is canceled for unconsciously using the N-word and Chappelle is quite consciously beating up on minorities and goes scot-free?

Wallen’s penalty was too tough.

Chappelle is not penalized at all.

Heroes. Who are they?

Well, they’re certainly not our politicians, seen as phony and sold-out.

And almost nobody with a brain looks up to today’s “musicians,” fungible, two-dimensional mini-brands who’ll do anything for the money as they demonstrate their ignorance ad infinitum.

Then there’s Kanye. Or “Ye,” as we’re now supposed to call him. This guy is bipolar and the public just sits by and watches the train-wreck. It’s akin to Chris Farley, but at least Chris Farley went to rehab. So Kanye holds listening parties for his new album and brings on stage pariahs Da Baby and Marilyn Manson. What is the message here? It’s hard not to see this as support. So, homophobia and abuse of women are okay? Da Baby has made his comments in public. Manson has only been convicted in the court of public opinion, we don’t know the truth. Then again, ever since O.J. people no longer have respect for the opinion of legal courts. People don’t only believe in alternative facts, they construct their own list of winners and losers, they have their own morals, the national fabric has unraveled.

So Chappelle is pouring gas on the fire. And the Netflix brass are clueless. This is what happens when you hang in the ivory tower too long, you don’t know how people outside it think. Never mind not knowing what the people in your own damn building think. I can see saying Chappelle’s show has a right to be aired, but I cannot see defending the position, saying that it will cause no harm. OF COURSE IT WILL CAUSE HARM! His work legitimizes heinous viewpoints. And we know society evolves slowly, one can’t imagine gay marriage being legal in the twentieth century, never mind marijuana. People have to be informed. The message has to spread from the inside to the outside. And as John Gruden’s e-mails proved, what people say in public is one thing, in private another. Come on, MeToo? The only difference is men now shut up publicly, they still say this stuff privately, and if you don’t know it you’re not a man. Same deal with homophobic comments. They’re rampant amongst men. We’ve got so much further to go. Forward instead of backward.

So, Netflix can’t let Chappelle go, it would be an horrific business decision, like Warner Music caving to blowback and allowing Interscope to walk, ultimately aligning itself with Universal, which helped Universal become the overwhelmingly dominant record label when it used to be an also-ran.

But that does not mean Netflix is powerless.

What should Netflix do?

I’m not exactly sure.

But there is a continuum. Between letting Chappelle’s special air unfettered and canceling it. Maybe a warning in front. That’s a cliché at this point, but we need to remind people that although this is comedy, these are serious issues, just don’t buy the opinion lock, stock and barrel.

You have to remind people of the dangers, the pitfalls. You should be able to make fun of anything, but the truth is Chappelle’s opinions are beyond jokes.

Then again, I didn’t see the show. But reading about it, which is a poor substitute, I know that Chappelle is defending himself against being potentially canceled. But don’t compare Chappelle with Lenny Bruce. Chappelle is actively putting down a segment of our population, whereas Bruce was testing limits, and sacrificed his career in the process.

But it’s a different time. Without Lenny Bruce there is no modern comedy, just like without Curt Flood, there is no modern Major League Baseball.

So, we just can’t let Chappelle skate completely. It’s not like he’s saying it’s just a joke, that it’s meaningless, this is what he truly believes. And do we want everybody to be able to amplify heinous beliefs unrestricted?

Of course not.

This is what is happening with Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham. And Donald Trump. Let’s see, Colin Powell not a hero? Vaccines don’t work because he died after getting inoculated? Of course the issue is much more complicated than that if you have a blood cancer like multiple myeloma, are immune-compromised. But people with these underlying conditions, LIKE MYSELF, don’t deserve attention because a huge slew of people don’t want their “freedom” impinged upon. The antivax message is so loud that we don’t realize how few people actually hold this position.

I point you to the latest e-mail from John Dick, majordomo of polling company CivicScience:

“Americans aren’t ‘divided’ over the COVID vaccine.

They’re divided over Friends (50%) versus Seinfeld (50%).

Or beer (51%) versus wine (49%).  

Or tucking in their top bed sheet (43%) or not (41%).

But not the vaccine.

By our latest count, 81% of U.S. adults have either received the COVID jab or plan to in the immediate future. Six percent remain on the fence. Just 13% are steadfastly against it (or can’t receive it). 

With over 300,000 different questions in our database, I’ll venture this ranks as one of the LEAST divided things we’ve ever studied. I can’t even tell you how rare it is when 67% of Republicans agree with 91% of Democrats. It’s top-percentile kind of stuff. 

The 13% of Americans who are anti-vax are equal to the percentage who don’t own a smartphone. It’s barely half the number who believe Bigfoot is real (26%) and nearly 50% smaller than the number who don’t believe in God (19%). It’s less common than brushing your teeth in the shower (17%) or not putting a top sheet on your bed at all (16%).

If you subtract the people who have legitimate health reasons for not getting vaccinated, the number of conscientious anti-vaxxers dips below the percentage of Americans who don’t wear deodorant (11%). 

I’m not judging any of these things (at least not out loud), but, make no mistake, they are outlying, fringe, possibly even extreme behaviors – statistically speaking.”


If someone is unvaccinated, it affects the population at large. If someone is trans… How does this affect your everyday life? You don’t like it conceptually? I mean what exactly is the problem? That trans people are going to turn other people trans? What next, Black people are going to make White people BLACK? Then again, ignorance knows no bounds.

Like the people pointing to Netflix firing a trans employee in the wake of the Chappelle fracas. THE EMPLOYEE LEAKED CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION! And if you follow the company, you’ve been stunned at what has been leaked, previously unknown facts, like how many people watched a show, what the show cost, the profit… But most people never get past the headline.

Ted Sarandos and Reed Hastings have to admit that visual content has consequences. Just like smoking onscreen does. They can also say that they don’t want to censor their talent. But this blanket, knee-jerk defense, is offensive. These two should have taken the side of the trans people, seen their viewpoint and said they don’t agree with what Chappelle said. But being SO fearful of pissing off the prickly Chappelle, they immediately defended him. The way families defend a criminal in their midst.

The solution is not black and white.

But the offense is.

Everybody is vulnerable in some way. We don’t want to have language police, we don’t want to make people afraid to express a cornucopia of viewpoints. But that does not mean we let everybody’s utterances skate by, uncommented upon.

Isn’t the measure of a great society that it takes care of its most vulnerable, its most defenseless, however few in number?

And yes, it is a slippery slope. Trigger warnings for classic books. The cancellation of Abraham Lincoln. The woke police can and often do get completely out of hand. But that does not mean there are no issues. They are thorny, we need to learn how to deal with them. And Netflix did a bad job here. As for Chappelle… This is the kind of guy you want to lionize? Isn’t this the problem in America today? That outliers are considered mainstream, like Tucker Carlson above? Just because a subject is hot, just because there is money involved, that does not mean you’ve got to be hands-off…the brave dive in! It’s easy to sit on the sidelines like a politician. It’s much harder to work for solutions. What would you do?