Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Tyler, the Creator vs. Lars Von Trier: Offensiveness Smackdown

First things first. You know racism, sexism, homophobia and all that? Yeah, well, those things all suck. They're just bad, no ifs, ands or buts. And when I say "bad", I mean the bad kind of bad, not the good kind. And when I said "bad" that time, I mean the same thing.

However, this does not necessarily mean that saying racist, sexist and homophobic things is inherently bad. For instance, there's this song called "Springtime for Hitler", which is incredibly anti-Semitic, but is, nonetheless hilarious. This is not to say, as post-modernists do, that art must be judged purely on its artistic value and not it's political value. If a work of art talks about racial issues, than it's a political work of art, and the politics must also be judged. But, things do get a bit more complicated.

You have ironic racists and you have people who use irony as a cover for genuine racism. You have crazy harmless people and you have crazy dangerous people. You have art that is meant to shock, and you have art that is meant to convert. And you have those Andy Kaufman types who are to obtuse that you can't quite tell what they're trying to do. And in those instances, you have controversies.