On Thursday evening, comedian Kevin Hart backed down to pressure from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences and withdrew his name from hosting the 2019 Oscars, thanks to the discovery of old tweets that angered members of the woke Left. The whole rigmarole began Thursday afternoon when Hart was mobbed on social media by intrepid reporters digging up his prior joke tweets, some of which referred to not wanting his then 3-year-old son to be gay and others of which used the word “f*g.” This drove the outrage mob to call for his head.
At the outset, Hart rightly refused to apologize, pointing out that he had addressed those comments years ago. “Guys, I’m almost 40 years old,” he said. “If you don’t believe that people change, grow, evolve as they get older, I don’t know what to tell you.” He added this, in writing:
Stop looking for reasons to be negative…Stop searching for reasons to be angry….I swear I wish you guys could see/feel/understand the mental place that I am in. I am truly happy people….there is nothing that you can do to change that…NOTHING. I work hard on a daily basis to spread positivity to all….with that being said. If u want to search my history or past and anger yourselves with what u find that is fine with me. I’m almost 40 years old and I’m in love with the man that I am becoming. You LIVE and YOU LEARN & YOU GROW & YOU MATURE. I live to Love….Please take your negative energy and put it into something constructive. Please….What’s understood should never have to be said. I LOVE EVERYBODY…..ONCE AGAIN EVERYBODY. If you choose to not believe me then that’s on you….Have a beautiful day.
Then, presumably at the behest of his business managers, he not only apologized, he withdrew:
I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year's Oscar's….this is because I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists. I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past.
— Kevin Hart (@KevinHart4real) December 7, 2018
I'm sorry that I hurt people.. I am evolving and want to continue to do so. My goal is to bring people together not tear us apart. Much love & appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again.
— Kevin Hart (@KevinHart4real) December 7, 2018
So, a few lessons.
1. Success Brings The Outrage Mob To Your Door. Hart has been a comedy star and a movie star for years. He had already addressed this controversy years ago. But he made the mistake of becoming even more successful – and that prompted a re-examination of all of his old tweets. The more successful you become, the more past controversies shall be dredged up anew. As Bridget Phetasy rightly stated:
What pisses me off about these mobs is they go after people when they achieve a lifetime dream. They wait and drag up your history, with no generosity of spirit or forgiveness or sense that in 10 years someone might have changed.
They wait. And they take that dream from you.
— Bridget Phetasy (@BridgetPhetasy) December 7, 2018
2. The Penitent Man Shall Not Pass. Hart may not have made these jokes today. He says he wouldn’t have. We all have said things in the past we regret. Hell, I have an ongoing and updated list of them. Twitter and Facebook just mean that there’s a record of that stuff. But instead of us asking each other whether we still believe those bad things, it’s more fun and edifying to tear people down by taking them out of context and assuming the impossibility of penitence. This whole episode wasn’t meant to make the world more tolerant or to allow Hart to change his tune. It was meant to destroy Hart for the pleasure of the crowd.
3. The Outrage Mob Will Never Stop. Social media is a mob without a purpose. That means that the shiniest object will draw the most scrutiny, the biggest crowd, and thus the highest chance of a mobbing. Think you’re not at the center of the mob, so you’re safe? Wait about five minutes. Whether you’re me, Mark Duplass, James Gunn, Kevin Hart, or anyone else in the public eye, there will be an excuse to attack you so long as you do something that violates the norms of oppositional political discourse. Soon enough, everyone will be wished into the cornfield. And that will only get worse as retaliatory strikes become the order of the day, exacerbated by a feckless and virtue signaling social media apparatus designed to expunge “sin,” in the words of Apple’s Tim Cook. Never mind that social media mobs represent a tiny fraction of human beings, and don’t even chart when it comes to impact on market share. They scare people. That’s enough.
4. You Are Only Punished If You Are Attacked By The Left. Joy Reid has said stuff far worse than Kevin Hart ever said. But the revelations of her statements came from the political right, so she still has a job. Hart was attacked by people who stand above him on the intersectional pyramid, and so he lost his Oscar gig. If only he’d had the foresight to get Mike Cernovich to dig up his old tweets rather than GLAAD allies, he’d be riffing jokes about Trump come February without a second thought. (What about James Gunn? He only lost his job because Disney is uber-fearful of blowback from family audiences, so the attacker matters less than the blowback.)
5. Hollywood Is Full Of Virtue Signaling Hypocrites. Today, Hollywood pats itself on the back for its foresight in stopping a successful black man from making jokes at a ritzy event based on decade-old non-PC jokes. A columnist at Variety says that Hollywood has preserved its record of “empathy.” This is hilarious. Hollywood is the least empathetic place in America. Disagree with the prevailing worldview? You’re toast. Want to maintain personal virtue at the expense of an A-list name’s libido? You’re toast. Make a joke the radicals don’t like? See you later. Get cast as a transgender woman while maintaining your status as a non-transgender woman? Prepare the outrage machine. Hollywood is cruel and nasty. Hart just found that out the hard way again.
Eric Weinstein says that in the future, everyone will be Oscar host for 15 minutes. That’s about right, but only if it takes that long to use Twitter’s search function. In truth, Hollywood should just get it over with and insist that the only people who work be current or former employees of Planned Parenthood, GLAAD, and the Obama administration. The only true representative of Hollywood is Hannah Gadsby, the insanely unfunny “comedian” hailed by the Left as a comic genius precisely because she is both woke and dramatically unfunny. Hollywood should just crown her Empress and be done with it. It’s the only way to ensure Hollywood’s purity and decency, dontcha know.