John Cleese: Can you tell me a woke joke? By The Irish News.
The ex-Monty Python star, 80, … told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: …
“The main thing is to try to be kind. But that then becomes a sort of indulgence of the most over-sensitive people in your culture, the people who are most easily upset.
“I don’t think we should organise a society around the sensibilities of the most easily upset people because then you have a very neurotic society.” …
“The main thing is to realise that words depend on their context. Very literal-minded people think a word is a word but it isn’t.”
Teasing can be a “bonding mechanism” as well as the “nasty, mean, unkind” type designed to “put people down”, which is “completely wrong”, the comic said.
“There’s also affectionate teasing which is the sort of teasing we do in families and work groups that know each other, just making fun of each other in gentle ways. …
“I would love to debate this… The first question I would say is, ‘Can you tell me a woke joke?’
“I don’t know what a woke joke would be like… It might be heart-warming but it’s not going to be very funny.”
That’s not John Cleese.