Patton Oswalt pushes for “big and sloppy” debate between comedians and political correctness: "Comedy is pretty f*cking essential”

Oswalt says the conversation proves comedy isn't a disposable or frivolous part of our culture

Published December 7, 2015 5:39PM (EST)

 patton_oswalt (AP/Chris Pizzello)
patton_oswalt (AP/Chris Pizzello)

Much has been discussed about political correctness on college campuses, especially in the weeks since student protests against racial discrimination at Yale and Mizzou spread to campuses nationwide.

A buzzed-about sideshow to these serious racial tensions features stand-up comedians versus P.C. college kids. Among the loudest critics of P.C. campuses is veteran stand-up Jerry Seinfeld, who reportedly refuses to play colleges campuses because “[Students] just want to use these words: ‘That’s racist;’ ‘That’s sexist;’ ‘That’s prejudice.’”

In light of all this, actor and comedian Patton Oswalt spoke with the Village Voice about what he thinks the responsibility of a comedian is.

“We are there … saying the unsayable,” Oswalt told the Voice. “Saying the rude, saying the obnoxious, saying the funny, and the smart. We just need to be there as the id.”

“As much as I fight with … social justice warriors or the extremes of the PC left, I’m glad that they’re there,” he continued. “Especially—just for selfish reasons—it proves that what comedians are doing is not disposable, it’s not unnecessary, it does have … I think, a positive effect on society.”

For these reasons, Oswalt argues, “Comedy is pretty fucking essential.”

Find the whole feature here. The video is part of the Voice's "This Is Stand-Up" series produced by Jessica Pilot.

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By Brendan Gauthier

Brendan Gauthier is a freelance writer.

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Aol_on Jerry Seinfeld Mizzou Patton Oswalt Pc Culture Political Correctness Racial Discrimination Yale