Friday, March 27, 2009

Mob Mentality Trumps Free Speech

An Edmonton comedy club has cancelled upcoming appearances by an American comic who mocked the Canadian military on the Fox Television show Red Eye.

Doug Benson was scheduled to do five shows at The Comic Strip in West Edmonton Mall next month, but owner Rick Bronson cancelled the gigs after the club received some unsettling calls and emails.

"Too many of them were too threatening in nature," Bronson said.

Before Benson and his partner started trashing the Canadian Military on their overnight Fox shock show, Benson should have checked his itinerary for his stand-up act. He was scheduled to appear at a comedy club in West Edmonton. He might have also observed that Edmonton hosts one of the largest military bases in Canada, which is within artillery distance from West Edmonton Mall. Also, lets not forget there are more than a few grieving military families in Edmonton.

I thought that the Canadian response to Benson's clownish show was a bit much. This is what Fox does. They bait people to get a response. In this respect they are not unlike the Toronto based National Post or the Toronto based Sun Media. They are half wits that can't really contribute anything so they push buttons.

The manager of the club had no choice to cancel the act, however it would have made good theatre to see Benson try and manage an Edmonton crowd. This is the ultimate test of every comedian, to win a crowd of obnoxious drunks.

But we'll probably never know since scores of goons in Edmonton made threats of violence resulting in the cancellation. They're probably keyboard cowards, but small businesses can't afford the risk.

So who has a worse pathology? The brain dead TV host or the guy who threatens violence? Please recommend this post

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