Friday, July 13, 2012

Dear Louis C.K.

Discussion of rape culture, rape threats, and what an asshole Daniel Tosh is.
@danieltosh your show makes me laugh every time I watch it. And you have pretty eyes.-Louis C.K. on Twitter
 Dear Louis C.K.,

I believe in standing up for what you believe is right.  I believe in speaking up.  I believe in standing in solidarity with someone.  That's what this blog is all about.

But when you do it to side with someone making rape threats in the guise of a joke?  When the problematic element you're pushing back against is women pointing out the problems with rape culture?  You're being a complete jackass, to put it lightly.

If you want to commiserate privately with Daniel Tosh over how great he is and how misunderstood he is and how funny he is and how those mean, humorless feminists just don't get it, do your thing.  You can call him, text him, e-mail him, send him a telegram, whatever you like.

But you chose a very public method of communication.  This isn't only a message to Daniel Tosh, this is a message to all of us.  You just told everyone Twitter reaches that you're choosing to stand in solidarity with someone who makes rape threats.

Maybe you don't see it as rape culture versus feminists.  Maybe you see it as comedians versus censorship or some other such nonsense.  I don't know what your intentions or motivations are.  I only know what you say and what it means to me.  And what you said to me was, "Daniel Tosh's show makes me laugh every time I watch it.  When he's up there making rape jokes, I sit back and laugh.  I could've been in that audience that night, laughing right along and enjoying a good show while he threatened that woman.  Good times, good times."

Maybe that's not what you meant.  Maybe it is.

I really enjoyed your work on "Parks and Recreation."  Your character was one of my favorite elements of the show for a while.  Unfortunately, I've now lost all interest in your career.  Where I formerly thought of you fondly as the cop who almost ended up with Leslie, I'll now think of you as someone who deliberately supports the rape culture instead of empathizing with survivors.

You sent that tweet to Daniel Tosh.  The rest of us heard you loud and clear.

Melissa McEwan sees a lot of promise in you.  I hope that she's right.  I hope to hear this story from you, too, someday.

With love,
Frank Lee


  1. This was a great post. I used to like Louis C.K. as he had an amusing skit about white privilege, but this is absurd. I think the public nature of these comedians feeling the need to "defend" Tosh is one of the things that bothers me the most. I mean, seriously?

    1. Thank you! A lot of comedians are closing ranks on this issue, and a lot of comedy fans are eager to explain and defend. It's easier to lash out at feminists than to admit that you or someone you like has messed up, apparently.