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Column: Michelle Wolf Should Stick To Comedy And Other Silly Things

The Trickle Down

The Trickle Down is Salute Magazine‘s weekly column by Political Writer Amanda Godula.  The Trickle Down is a weekly look into what’s need-to-know, fresh takes on trends, and the inevitable controversies from the political arena. Let’s dig in and see what’s happening this week.

We find silly excuses to silence people – Michelle Wolf is our culture’s latest victim.

Michelle Wolf made a splash at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner this year.  So much of a splash that she is fighting a tsunami of backlash for her comedic political commentary.  It didn’t take long for one reoccurring argument: The argument that a person is just their job, expertise, or some other defining characteristic, and cannot speak out of one’s specialty.

For example:  Michelle Wolf should stick to comedy.


Exploring American culture, it’s becoming a trend argument.  It transcends more than Wolf and comedy, like Colin Kaepernick should stick to sports, Meryl Streep should stick to acting, etc., etc.

Why is there an unwritten (but often very outspoken) rule about people sticking to their specialties?  Somehow we’ve created a vacuum: an athlete, actor, or comedian’s opinion matters less than ours. It’s plain stupid rhetoric.

It’s an accepted societal double standard.  We’ve created a vacuum where we allow discounting individuals for irrelevant reasons; being an athlete, actor, or comedian disqualifies their opinion as counting for more than yours or mine.

This could not be more false.  Moreover, those areas shape our culture.  Consider Jon Stewart and his influence on media and politics.  His former show, The Daily Show, became a cultural transition for where some people received their news, but also how people wanted news (even if it was satirically).

Michelle Wolf is not Jon Stewart, but that doesn’t mean her comedy is less important to the political discussion.  She pointed out some pretty obvious truths: Flint, MI “still doesn’t have clean water”, Kellyanne Conway known for lying, and how people are anti-abortion until it affects them personally (ahem, Tim Murphy – we haven’t forgotten about you).

This is what comedians do; they use their platform to talk about relevant issues in a way that gets an audience to pay attention.

Wolf did just that, and she wouldn’t change the WHCD routine.

“I wouldn’t change a single word. I’m very happy with what I said, and I’m glad I stuck to my guns.”

The comedian’s performance garnered negative attention from one of its targets: President Donald Trump.

Ironically, she is the most watched WHCD emcee of all time.  Maybe because her comedy bit resonated with viewers?

Let’s stop being triggered by everything. Comedians aren’t the issue. If Wolf’s routine is consuming you, consider yourself lucky and comtemplate self-reflection.

Watch Wolf’s speech at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner (note: this video contains mature language not suitable for all viewers):


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