Sean Penn and Conan O’Brien Just Blasted ‘Soviet’ Cancel Culture, Praise Forgiveness

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Sean Penn and Conan O’Brien Just Blasted ‘Soviet’ Cancel Culture, Praise Forgiveness

By Movieguide® Staff

Y’all know the Left has gone too far when Sean Penn and Conan O’Brien have to say, “Wait a second, that’s a problem.”

OK, maybe they didn’t say that literally, but they did call out “soviet” cancel culture in a recent podcast.

Faithwire summed it up this way:

In the July 5 episode of O’Brien’s podcast, “Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend,” the retired late-night show host condemned cancel culture as “very Soviet.”

“Empathy is a very important word and also forgiveness,” argued O’Brien, who asked Penn his thoughts on the push to destroy people’s careers over their bygone mistakes. “We found that someone did something in 1979 that is now not appropriate. They’re dead to us.”

“What happened to ‘let’s talk about that now?’” he added. “People can also be forgiven if they even need to be forgiven. It feels very Soviet sometimes.”

Penn piped in, labeling the phenomenon “ludicrous.”

The “Mystic River” actor then referred to 27-year-old journalist Alexi McCammond, who was ousted from her role as editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue in March over anti-Asian tweets she posted as a teenager.

“When we’re destroying careers like that, what are we really achieving?” he asked. “Or you look at politicians — I give a big nod to anyone that’s willing to enter the public arena who is doing so because they give a [expletive].”

During the podcast, O’Brien praised Penn for his portrayal of the late LGBT activist Harvey Milk in the 2008 film “Milk.”

Penn, though, pointed out that — in today’s culture — he wouldn’t be permitted to play the role.

“Today, almost certainly, I would not be permitted to be cast in that role,” he said. “We’re living in a time when, if you’re playing a gay lead character, you’d have to be a gay man, or a trans character. And there have been these casting issues.”

“When you have a period of evolution that certainly has an opportunity for people who have had less opportunities to move forward,” Penn continued. “That has to be supported, and yet, in this pendulum swing society that we’re in, you wonder at some point if only Danish Princes can play Hamlet. It is, I believe, too restrictive. People are looking for gotcha moments and to criticize.”

While Penn may just be looking out for his own career, he has a valid point.

Take Chris Harrison as an example. Harrison has hosted THE BACHELOR and THE BACHELORETTE franchise since the dawn of time, or really just a few decades since its inception. When a contestant, who is now dating the guy she supposedly offended, had some photos resurface of her at an antebellum sorority party, Harrison asked for people to have grace for the girl.

Apparently that was an unacceptable answer, and he left the show.

“This historic season of ‘The Bachelor’ should not be marred or overshadowed by my mistakes or diminished by my actions,” Harrison said, referring to the show’s first black bachelor, Christian Matt James. “To that end, I have consulted with Warner Bros. and ABC and will be stepping aside for a period of time and will not join for the ‘After the Final Rose’ special.”

Also consider all this MANDALORIAN drama. Actresses Gina Carano and Sasha Banks are both under fire for their social media activity. Carano, ultimately fired from LucasFilms, called out Democratic responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. Banks, who fans are calling to be removed from the show, liked a tweet about concerns about the COVID-19 vaccine.

“Earlier on last year before ‘The Mandalorian’ came out, they wanted me to use their exact wording for an apology over pronoun usage,” Carano said of her time with LucasFilms. “I declined and offered a statement in my own words. I made clear I wanted nothing to do with mocking the transgender community and was just drawing attention to the abuse of the mob in forcing people to put pronouns in their bio.” 

Carano continued: “That was heartbreaking, but I didn’t want to take away from the hard work of everyone who worked on the project, so I said OK. That was the last time I was contacted about any type of public statement or apology from Lucasfilm. I found out through social media, like everyone else, that I had been fired.”

Their careers are on the line because they voiced (or liked) opinions different than what mainstream culture promotes.

We cannot just remove everything we dislike.

Yes, there are consequences for actions, especially for sin. However, it is not a sin to disagree with culture.

To remove any dissenters isn’t “progressive,” it’s communist.


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