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Comedian Rowan Atkinson: Cancel Culture ‘Like A Medieval Mob’

British star has a long history of defending free speech against the language police

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ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

Rowan Atkinson, famous for portraying the characters Mr Bean and Blackadder, has once again hit headlines for slamming the rise of a destructive cancel culture.

In an interview with the UK’s Radio Times, Atkinson described online trolls trying to ban everything as “the digital equivalent of the medieval mob.”

“The problem we have online is that an algorithm decides what we want to see, which ends up creating a simplistic, binary view of society,” he said.

“It becomes a case of either you’re with us or against us. And if you’re against us, you deserve to be ‘cancelled’,” the British comedian emphasised.

Atkinson also blasted social media, saying that it fills him with “fear about the future,” because it continues to lower tolerance for differing opinions, which widens divisions in society.

“What we have now is the digital equivalent of the medieval mob roaming the streets looking for someone to burn,” Atkinson urged.

He noted that he has been on the end of the hate mob, not only owing to some of the skits in Mr Bean, many of which were written 30 years ago, but also because of his long history of standing up for free speech.

“It is scary for anyone who’s a victim of that mob and it fills me with fear about the future,” Atkinson declared.

Atkinson opposed the introduction of so called ‘hate speech’ laws in 2005, describing the legislation as like taking “sledgehammer to crack a nut”.

Atkinson also opposed the introduction of homophobic ‘hate speech’ clauses into UK law in 2009.

At the time in 2009, Atkinson outlined where such moves to quell speech were heading, prophesising “a culture of censoriousness, a questioning, negative and leaden attitude that is encouraged by legislation of this nature.”

The comedian warned that it would only be “considerably and meaningfully alleviated by [a] free speech clause.”

In 2012, Atkinson further railed against “insulting” behaviour being classed as a criminal offence.

“The clear problem of the outlawing of insult is that too many things can be interpreted as such. Criticism, ridicule, sarcasm, merely stating an alternative point of view to the orthodoxy, can be interpreted as insult,” Atkinson stated at the time during an impassioned defence of free speech:

In 2020, Atkinson was again targeted by the mob he speaks about when he publicly opposed Scotland’s ‘hate crimes’ bill, saying that it “risked stifling freedom of expression, and the ability to articulate or criticise religious and other beliefs”.

Several other comedians have railed against the rise of cancel culture, including Monty Python star John Cleese, The Office creator Ricky Gervais, the ‘podfathers’ Joe Rogan and Adam Carolla, as well as Bill Burr and ‘politically incorrect’ star Dave Chapelle, to name just a few.

Cancel culture has seen some comedians self-censoring in order to appease the mob:

Comedy is the canary in the coal mine when it comes to cancel culture, however. There are signs that its tentacles are penetrating deeply into all aspects of society.

A recent study by leading education focused think tank Civitas revealed that free speech at the world’s leading universities is being eroded at an alarming rate.

The study found that within the past three years, more than 68 per cent of universities in the UK have seen free speech severely restricted, with academics unable to meaningfully discuss the nuances of issues such as race and gender.

The report notes that universities including Oxford, Cambridge and St Andrews, three of the world’s premiere institutions are among those that have fallen into a “red” category for free speech following instances of “no platforming” of scheduled speakers.

Last year, 150 of the world’s top intellectuals, authors and activists signed an open letter decrying leftist cancel culture, censorship and the totalitarian march of “ideological conformity.”

The letter warned that cancel culture is creating a climate of risk aversion that is preventing anyone from dissenting from the monolithic consensus of social justice rhetoric, creating a “stifling atmosphere will ultimately harm the most vital causes of our time.”

In the US, the Deputy Secretary of The Department of Homeland Security also recently warned that the actions of tech companies in embracing cancel culture, and censoring opinions they do not agree with constitutes a “grave threat to national security.”

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The Truth About the Dahmer Netflix Show

More racial division.

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The Jeffrey Dahmer Netflix series has taken artistic license to another level.

Seemingly as part of an effort to satiate the woke mob.

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McDonalds Announces Adult Happy Meals Will Come With Toys

Perpetual adolescence.

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McDonalds will now sell toys with adult happy meals.

Nostalgia? Or ingrained perpetual adolescence for the manchild market?

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Why Didn’t This Video Go Viral?

If only talent translated to virtue

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Steve Watson

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This says everything about the world we live in.

The Library of Congress decided in its infinite wisdom to loan a flute owned by founding father James Madison to the pop star Lizzo, making her the only person to ever be allowed to play the instrument, which dates from 1813.

How was this presented to the public?

The flute was transported to Lizzo’s DC concert, where she proceeded to parade around with barely anything on, twerking and gyrating her morbidly obese behind while blowing into the flute.

It’s worse than the movie Idiocracy.

But that’s not the entire story.

The museum had invited Lizzo to come and play the instrument, because, although it may come as a shock, she can actually play the flute and is talented at it.

Lizzo did visit the Library, and did play the instrument, with clothes on and without shaking her ass around.

So why didn’t that video make any headlines? Why didn’t that video go viral?

Because having actual talent and engaging in real culture is discouraged in favour of dumbed down degrading ass shaking clown shows.

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