Chris Rock used to be a funny actor and stand-up comic. But in recent years he’s seems to have taken on the role of full-time apologist for President Obama, his failing policies and the ideology that informs them. The effect on Rock, as a Vulture Magazine interview reveals, isn’t funny. Bizarre and sad, but not funny.
1. He’s afraid of white people?
VULTURE: What is the worst audience you’ve ever played to?
I had a really bad show in Biloxi, Mississippi. That sounds so cliché. Last tour, Obama was running, and I was doing all my stuff, and it was hostile.
Was the audience black, white, mixed?
Probably more white than black. A few thousand seats. Playing a casino.
Always a problem, I suppose.
Especially on a Friday night. Friday-night second show’s the worst because they’ve been drinking since they got off work. We definitely were like, “Wow. Let’s drive to another town. We should not sleep here.”
In another Q&A, Rock reveals that he “drills” his kids after school each day to make sure they didn’t experience any comments that could be considered racist:
VULTURE: Your own kids are all girls, right?
All girls. I mean, I almost cry every day. I drop my kids off and watch them in the school with all these mostly white kids, and I got to tell you, I drill them every day: Did anything happen today? Did anybody say anything? They look at me like I am crazy.
2. White people need to own up to the racism of their ... parents?
VULTURE: It’s about white people adjusting to a new reality?
Owning their actions. Not even their actions. The actions of your dad. Yeah, it’s unfair that you can get judged by something you didn’t do, but it’s also unfair that you can inherit money that you didn’t work for.
Rock also revealed that he wanted to be a correspondent to Ferguson and unveil the racism of white people that “the press [just] accepts” so “never dug into it.”
3. Conservatives just can’t be funny
VULTURE: What about conservative comedians? You and Dennis Miller were on SNL together. Is it just because I don’t share his politics that I find him less funny, or is there something about conservative stand-up that just doesn’t work?
Yeah, he was there my first year. He used to bust my balls. He’d come into my office and say, “Hey, Rock, how’s that ‘next Eddie’ thing working out?” Oh, he’s definitely less funny. You know where he’s going. Smart as hell, but you know where he’s going. The middle’s where it’s at, comically. I mean, what do you got? Miller, Stewart, Maher.
Miller on the right, Stewart in the middle, Maher on the left?
And the most successful guy’s …
Stewart’s middle-to-left, but he’s still more in the middle.
In Miller’s case, do you think that identifying with those in power is an impediment to laughter?
I’ll say this. Poor people laugh harder than rich people. Especially black people, they laugh with their feet, too.
“Identifying with those in power?” Miller was a conservative when Democrats held Congress and Obama was going to heal the planet.
4. Poor people would ‘riot’ if they found out ‘how rich people’ live
VULTURE: For all the current conversation about income inequality, class is still sort of the elephant in the room.
Oh, people don’t even know. If poor people knew how rich rich people are, there would be riots in the streets. If the average person could see the Virgin Airlines first-class lounge, they’d go, “What? What? This is food, and it’s free, and they … what? Massage? Are you kidding me?”
5. George Bush was Fox, while Obama is NBC
“And the thing about George Bush is that the kid revolutionized the presidency. How? He was the first president who only served the people who voted for him. He literally operated like a cable network. You know what I mean?”
“He’s the first cable-television president, and the thing liberals don’t like about Obama is that he’s a network guy. He’s kind of Les Moonves. He’s trying to get everybody.”
Hmm, wonder if the “bitter clingers” have enjoyed the outreach. Or the elderly nuns springing for birth control. Or the entrepreneurs who “didn’t build that.” Or people who don’t think rewarding illegal immigration is a good idea. Or George Zimmerman or the Cambridge police. Or ...
6. “There’s an advantage that Bush had that Obama doesn’t have. People thinking you’re dumb is an advantage.”
Really? People thinking Bush was “dumb” didn’t really seem to do him any favors. The entertainment media portrayed him for years as the dumb cowboy, while the news media’s coverage of the president was always derogatory and uneven. Meanwhile the news media has fawned over the President, giving him softball interviews and even gushing over him like a teen hearthrob.
And perhaps the most hilarious of all….
7. Republicans want to play “victim”
VULTURE: We’ve just come through an election that was a triumph for Fox News and a fiasco for Obama. What do you make of it?
Jon Stewart has said the reason Fox News works better than CNN is because the people at Fox News figured out how to make themselves into victims.
So will it now be harder for Republicans to play victims?
They have no problem playing victims.
Even in victory?
Even in victory. America—not black America, but America as a whole—started in England and was ruled by kings and queens and had a class system. I’m almost of the mind that that’s what America wants at the end of the day. Maybe America wants monopolies.