As I’m sure most sapient beings know, Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars, likely instantly boosting viewership by five million or so. People who have only a tenuous connection with reality are shocked, shocked! Why, it’s just like Russia invading Ukraine, or Pearl Harbor, or 9-11, oh, the humanity! It’s symbolic of this or that woke narrative, it’s white supremacy (you knew that was inevitable, didn’t you?)! One dimwit even managed to blame Donald Trump (you knew that was inevitable too, didn’t you?). Now, more than a week past the earth-shattering event, allow me please, gentle readers, to present two among many viewpoints. Ben Dreyfus explains reality:
Last night at the Oscars, Chris Rock told a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith and then her husband, Will Smith, walked on stage and slapped him.
The natural response to this was confusion and laughter. People didn’t know if it was a bit or not and the whole thing was very surreal and I can totally see how if you were in the room at the Oscars it would be very uncomfortable. But I was not in the room at the Oscars. Like you and everyone else, I was watching it on TV. And LOL.
One famous comedian told a joke about a famous movie star and then her even more famous movie star husband slapped him with an open hand on live TV. All three of these famous people are friends and have known each other for decades.
Moments later, Chris Rock was apologizing and Denzel Washington was calming Will Smith down and it was all just absolute chaos. LOLOLOLOL.
Indeed. Smith didn’t shoot Rock. He didn’t beat him to a pulp. He didn’t invade a neighboring nation.
Immediately, people decided that it was a very very serious deal. People called the LAPD to report it! You have to imagine how these phone calls went. ‘9-1-1? Are you watching the Oscars? I think you better turn ‘em on.’
Some people said it was a sign of toxic masculinity. Other people said it showed the Hollywood’s woke agenda is a sham. Some people said it explained Trump? Other people blamed Black Lives Matter. Some people said drama as an art was a mistake. Other people said it meant Chris Rock isn’t good at jiujitsu? Some wondered if it would be ok for Will Smith to assault a female comedian.
No, it wouldn’t, and that wouldn’t happen, as I’ll shortly explain.
Others said Will Smith was acting like Putin? Some said that it meant that random lunatics were now empowered to assault every comedian they see! None of these things are what happened of course. Because what happened is a total non-thing.
One man made a mean joke about his friend’s wife and that man then slapped him. Neither of the people involved in this incident wanted to turn it into anything else. It was over. The only reason this is notable at all is because they’re movie stars and this was at the Oscars but that doesn’t make it some terribly serious thing we all need to freak out about. It just makes it funny. Celebrities: they’re just like us! LOL.
The second this happened, Chris Rock immediately made it clear that he was not interested in pressing charges or escalating this. At that point it became a victimless crime. Just a funny weird thing that happened! But that is not acceptable if you are all in on “This is outrageous!!” So there was lots of nonsense about how the real victims are the children. Oh the poor children! The impressionable youths watching the Oscars who were until this nightmarish moment completely unfamiliar with casual violence.
Yeah, I’m sure there were plenty of children watching the Oscars to see which film they’ve never heard of or seen is going to win.
Here’s a dose of real reality for the reality challenged: insult another man’s wife in the company of Normal Americans, you’re likely to get more than a theatrical slap. This is the norm, the code, among civilized human beings. This is so because they know what women are, and knowing that, loving and cherishing women who give us all life, they feel protective toward them. They do this because they, unlike those living in woke narrative irreality, know what a woman is. They also know what a man is, and understand the differences and strengths. To them, women are precious, not indefinable meat puppets to be used and manipulated for fame, fortune and political advantage.
Normal Americans also live in the real world where violence is not carefully choreographed and/or done by stunt doubles, where wounds are not the result of skillful makeup and computer graphics. One can get seriously injured or dead if they engage in a fight, so most just don’t do it. They will even walk away from an insult, where they can, to avoid a fight. But hurt a man’s children or pet, insult his wife, particularly in the presence of others—ten or more million others–and sweet reason may instantly desert him as his protective instinct, the instinct that preserves civilization, kicks in.
I’ve recently observed a man who will not protect women is no man at all. Nor is a man who insults a woman. This is Flyover Country reality. In fact, it’s the reality in much of the world, only out there, an insult of that type can lead to instant and violent death. There’s a biological, hard-wired reason for that.
America has reached the pinnacle—and begun to descend—of civilization because we have until recently lived in the real world. If a civilization does not protect its women, those who give birth to everyone—and no, men can’t do it no matter how they identify–it does not survive. By that, I don’t mean merely protect with violence, but take lesser steps to convince everyone that steps over the line means they’ll be facing violence. This, in human affairs, is called deterrence, a concept about which Joe Biden and his handlers know nothing, but occasionally pretend to embrace until they walk it back again. Deterrence makes predators wary and keeps everyone polite.
Disclaimer: Part of being a man, of being an adult, is being willing to accept the consequences of one’s actions. Were Smith’s actions rude? Inappropriate to the occasion? Certainly.
Why did Chris Rock decide not to press charges? Perhaps because not only was he not hurt, but because he knew his alligator comedian mouth overrode his decency; it crossed the line. That happens sometimes, particularly with comedians. He realized that and apologized. Normal Americans would say Smith acted like a man, and Rock took it like a man. Smith did the right thing, or at least the understandable thing, right away. Rock did the wrong thing, but made it right. This is masculinity, which is only toxic in woke narratives, which thinks the slap was Pearl Harbor.
I don’t put a great deal of faith in polls, but this one is interesting:
In the poll, conducted among 2162 adults with no margin of error reported, men backed Rock over Smith, while women sided with Smith. So, too, did respondents under 65 years old and earning less than $100,000 per year, as well as those without a college degree. Trump voters also tended to support Smith over Rock, while Biden voters were marginally more likely to support Rock over Smith. Black, Hispanic, and Native American respondents more strongly favored Smith.
Thus, while Smith did not do what was legally right, and the Academy belatedly condemned his use of violence, some Americans analyzed the event through a more traditional set of mores: if you insult a man’s wife, expect to be slapped.
No one living in the real world should be surprised by these results, though I am a bit disappointed in the “men” responding to the survey. Of course, we have no idea what proportion of pajama boys, as opposed to actual men, were surveyed…
But violence never solves anything! Don’t know much about his-to-ry–or human nature–do yah, sport?
On the other hand, Will Smith may be a not-too-bright, entitled actor with impulse control problems. I report; you decide. What is certain is far too many people are taking this far too seriously, and to them I suggest only: get a life! One guy slapped another. It happens, and it’s not symbolic of anything other than that one guy slapped another.
People who live in the real world can forgive. They can also laugh, at themselves and others. That’s what living in reality means. That’s what it requires. That, along with not obsessing endlessly over trivia, is what preserves everything.
And that, gentle readers, is all I’m going to have to say about Will Smith’s slap heard ’round the world. How about you?