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Everyone Is Suddenly Mad That Chris Rock, Louis C.K. and Ricky Gervais Said the N-Word a Decade Ago

One of my favorite things in the world is when people get mad about things that happened years ago and no one cared about. Like the people who insist that ‘Baby It’s Cold Outside’ is bad now even though it’s clearly good and basically everyone knows it. Or how people took some old James Gunn tweets out of context (without even understanding how retweets worked before there was a retweet button) and Disney fired him because the ten most easily-offended people in the world were offended.

There’s a cottage industry on social media for people who dig through old TV shows and movies and songs looking for things to be offended by, and the latest thing is a 2011 clip from HBO’s Talking Funny in which Chris Rock, Louis C.K., Ricky Gervais and Jerry Seinfeld discuss using the n-word on stage and in general.

If you watched the clip, you may or may not have gathered that they were actually discussing one of Chris Rock’s most famous bits. It’ll provide some context if you’ve never heard it before, you’ll know what Chris and Louis are talking about, at any rate.

But is it okay that Louis and Gervais said the n-word while discussing if it’s appropriate? I don’t think it’s anyone’s place to say. If people are offended by it, I’m not going to tell them they’re wrong. But this discussion was recorded seven years ago and no one gave a damn at the time, so maybe move along to things people have done recently. I think a good rule of thumb is that if a baby was born when something happened, if the baby can talk now, it’s too late to be mad at it for not being woke enough.

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