Kramer's Racist Outburst - Caught on Tape

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by spicyapple, Nov 20, 2006.

  1. spicyapple macrumors 68000

    spicyapple

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    #1
    Seinfeld's Kramer (Michael Richards) exploded in anger at some African Americans who heckled him while he was performing at a comedy club. The racial slurs left the crowd in shock.

    TMZ.com caught the ugly incident. http://www.tmz.com/2006/11/20/kramers-racist-tirade-caught-on-tape/

    CNN Coverage on YouTube.
     
  2. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    #2
    Interesting, particularly since his military stint involved his producing shows which dealt with racism. "He was drafted during the Vietnam war and stationed in Germany as one of the co-directors of the V Corps Training Road Show. He produced and directed shows dealing with race relations and drug abuse."

    Whoa. I just viewed it. It's even worse. "Over the top" doesn't describe it when something like this is totally under the bar of acceptable.
     
  3. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    i watched the video. strikes me as more lenny bruce than mel gibson. somewhere in there, i think he was actually trying to make a point. emphasis on "i think".

    but he lost his crowd. bad move.
     
  4. thedude110 macrumors 68020

    thedude110

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    He totally, totally lost it. And the poor emcee trying to clean up the mess at the end of the video ...

    Good for those who had the courage to stand up and walk out.
     
  5. spicyapple thread starter macrumors 68000

    spicyapple

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    Yeah. Can't imagine being there "live" as the air is sucked out of the room. Just watching the video gave me chills.
     
  6. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    I just watched the video, He went totally over the top. i think that he may have been trying to make a point, but he went about it in totally the wrong way. Did anyone else find it disturbing that some of the audience was still laughing as this was going on?
     
  7. Hummer macrumors 65816

    Hummer

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    I had to replay the "50 year" part. I couldn't believe he actually said that.
     
  8. beatsme macrumors 65816

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  9. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    i've decided this is awesome. we're so desensitized and unshockable, maybe this is what it was like to be in a club in 1960 and listen to lenny bruce for the first time.

    or cabaret voltaire in 1916...
     
  10. beatsme macrumors 65816

    beatsme

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    I wonder how this would've gone over in New York City...
     
  11. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    What point was he trying to make? I'm afraid lurid obscured lucid. And don't most stand ups have an arsenal of prepared come-backs at hand to disarm and turn the cards on any hecklers?

    If anything could be more disturbing, it's to contemplate that what he spewed out was actually premeditated and rehearsed at some point in his mind and/or harbored as part of his repertoire. Either way, truly spontaneous or premeditated, what came out of his mouth articulated what's in his heart.
     
  12. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    much the same way, i expect.
     
  13. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    this is conjecture, not having been there, but i reckon that some number of patrons were annoyed by the hecklers and mr richards picked up on that. when he confronted the hecklers, he was half p-o'd by the heckling, and half playing on the aspect that they were annoying everyone, but no one could say anything because of their race (whether due to perceived racism or being scared, who knows).

    that's what it felt like to me. mr richards use of language is open for much debate, and i suspect by wednesday he will have made a public apology and withdraw the remarks. people will be pissed at him for a while, and it'll probably hurt his career, whatever is left of it.

    but if i'm right about the point he's making, i'd rather he come out and state that. if yer gonna be bold, might as well let people know why.
     
  14. iMeowbot macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

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    That will happen tonight in fact.
     
  15. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    I would like to know what the rude heckler was doing,saying etc.
     
  16. Hummer macrumors 65816

    Hummer

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    #16
    On the news they said the heckler said something like 'my friend doesn't think you're funny'.
     
  17. xsedrinam macrumors 601

    xsedrinam

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    #17
    I've seen some three different kinds of "I'm sorry"'s:

    1. "I'm sorry" (I got caught on tape, but that's not what I meant)
    2. "I'm sorry" (oooops, it slipped out, hehe)
    3. "I'm sorry" (I recognize/admit I have a problem, and I'm getting help)

    Only the latter will do, in this case. Though I normally don't watch Letterman, I will, tonight.
    Thanks for the second link, iMeowbot
     
  18. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #18
    or, my favorite:
    4. "i'm sorry" (if you got offended ['cuz that's your problem])
     
  19. Flowbee macrumors 68030

    Flowbee

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    #19
    More like Don Rickles. Seriously, how can you compare Lenny Bruce with a has-been TV actor spewing racial insults at his audience? I'm wondering if you understand exactly what was shocking about Lenny Bruce's act.
     
  20. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    the similarity is using the n-word in such a way as to examine its meaning, not in the performers themselves. i didn't think i was being unclear.

    and what i think is awesome is how an audience can react when shocked. i saw something similar firsthand when i was at an awards show hosted by dennis miller. this was in 2003, just prior to the iraq war. miller went on a pro-war rant and had members of the audience either yelling at him or leaving.

    a fight over his comments broke out in the bathroom between two patrons. it was fascinating to me.

    i would have loved to seen lenny bruce in 1960, or been at the cabaret voltaire in 1916, as i mentioned. or in paris the night Le Sacre du Printemps premiered. but in this post-modern, cynical world, perhaps all i'm left to watch is, as you put it, as has-been TV actor losing it (intentional or not) with racial insults.
     
  21. maxterpiece macrumors 6502a

    maxterpiece

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    Examine the meaning? He had no interest in examining any meaning. He lost it. He was not funny. He was not clever or interesting, just bitter as hell. Why? My guess is because since Seinfeld was cancelled 8(!) years ago, he hasn't done a single interesting thing. A lot of comics lose their edge because when they become famous they lose touch with real people and with reality. I think the only meaning to be found from that tirade is that Richards is WAY out of touch.
    I agree that it is fun to watch how masses of people respond to surprising situations and this video wasn't an exception. I don't know much about Miller's rant, but it seems to me a similar example to the Richards explosion. Miller decided to use the stage to preach about something that was irrelevant - he basically abused the stage to go on a personal rant, and I think people get angry because he honestly has no right to do that. They gave him their attention and he decided to go on some personal rant about something they not only were opposed to, but they wanted to laugh, and he decided to talk about something that wasn't funny at all. So what I'm saying is that Miller didn't really push anyone's buttons with his routine, he just made people feel taken advantage of. And they were - if I came into every thread and started advocating the Iraq War, regardless of the thread topic, people would get pretty angry at me.

    The only thing i found shocking about the clip was how much of a boring loser Richards has become. I'm all for shocking people, but I don't think it was what he said that shocked people. I think people knew exactly what he was thinking and any astonishment they had was from how sad of a person Richards was showing himself to be.
     
  22. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    just to clarify, miller was the host of the 2003 Golden Trailer awards. he was given space to do a short act up top, but the shame was that his "act", which was nothing more than an anti-arab and anti-liberal rant, ruined the entire awards ceremony, which was a shame. he lost his audience and never got them back.

    i was there because some friends of mine wrote the material for the show (not miller's act, but the rest of it), and none of it worked because of how the mood had become. the people who put together the ceremony were practically in tears because of what miller did. a real shame.

    iow, the audience wasn't there to be challenged by art (which is what i think *should* happen during standup), they were there to celebrate the accomplishments of their friends and colleagues.
     
  23. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    maybe i'm wrong, and richards was simply on a racist, gibson-like rant. if that's true, then none of what i was saying about challenging the audience applies -- it just makes richards a jerk.

    seems he'll just apologize and try to put it behind him (with a lot of damage done), but i would like to know truly what he trying to accomplish, if anything. seems i might never know.
     
  24. maxterpiece macrumors 6502a

    maxterpiece

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    he already apologized: http://us.video.aol.com/video.index.adp?mode=1&pmmsid=1773282
     
  25. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

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    I think he totally lost it and didn't know how to deal with the hecklers in a funny way. It seemed very awkward and you could sense him squirming.

    Like he was trying for something funny, profound and controversial but just came up blank when he needed to deliver. The repeating of "he's a ******!" seemed like it could have led into something to win the audience back but Richards was unable to shoot from the hip fast enough to make such a shocking outburst work as comedy.

    It kind of reminded me of this guy, except this guy was never famous and doesn't seem remotely funny at all.

    http://www.break.com/index/comedian_confronted_by_offended_woman.html
     

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