A TIME FOR VIOLENCE
( Is it "Ok" that Chris Rock Got Slapped? )
by Matt Garvin
I wrote this up before Will Smith's (lame and self-serving) apology delivered via Instagram. I first heard about the Oscar Slap the morning after it happened from my wife. When I viewed the incident later that day I was shocked at how violent it was, and how surreal it was. So I whipped off my initial thoughts below...
. . .
There is a time for violence. To deny this is preposterous. In my mind, it is when myself or my family is in peril. When the threat of violence or bodily harm is imminent. I hope I am never again in that situation, but if I am, I hope to rise to the occasion and protect myelf and my brood.(To read about the last time I was in that situation see: "Home Invasion: Part 1".) My bottom line: When the life and limb of yourself or someone close to you is in danger -- yes! -- violence can be forgiven. It is one of those rare instances when me having a bunch more testosterone than my wife can actually be beneficial. :P
At the Oscar Ceremony, if a comedian offends you by making a comment about your wife, who is herself a public figure, this is not a time for violence. Ever. I have seen the clip, and it is fascinating. That was a hard slap. There is a strong chance Chris Rock was concussed afterward, but even if he wasn't, he did not deserve that. There were so many options for Will Smith to show his offense. Walking out. Saying something from his seat. And since he won Best Actor later on, certainly that would be a great spot to stand up for his wife, though I realize he didn't know he was going to win. But to get so offended to walk up on stage and assault the person hosting the show? Who is a professional comedian, doing his job? Come on... My image of him has completely changed. Will Smith is a lunatic. Will Smith is a bully. Will Smith has serious anger management issues, and is a horrible role model. Or rather, he is a great example of how not to act.
Still, the incident is fascinating, so I am glad it happened. I feel sorry for Chris Rock, who was a victim and handled things like a pro, but the world is more interesting for having things like this happen. This was like something out of a movie, that would never actually happen in real life. Not on a stage that big. Not with celebrities that famous. This was nightmare territory. As in: Chris Rock is hosting the Oscars and suddenly realizes he is completely naked! Or, Chris Rock is hosting the Oscars and suddenly Will Smith saunters up and slaps the shit out of him in front of the world. How could a joke go that wrong, for real?
There are so many questions: What if it was Ricky Gervais that had offended him? What if it was a woman? What might be going on in his own life at this time that would lead Will Smith to behave so erratically? Or is this routine behavior for him, but because he draws such big audiences, his past bad behavior has been kept under wraps? How was he allowed to return to his seat, and act like he didn't just assault someone in front of millions of people? Also, I did not watch the Oscars, I only saw the assault clip, and a few seconds of him making his Oscar speech, where he defended "protecting your family." But I understand Will Smith got a standing ovation after his acceptance speech, and that he never even apologized to Chris Rock. A standing ovation for being a bully and a thug! This is a whole, extra, pathetic angle, and just goes to show how ridiculous Hollywood is. Humans are animals, and animals can be violent. There is a place for violence. This was many, many leagues removed from that place. Will Smith, get help. Hollywood Oscar crowd, get lost!
- End of Blog 19 -