In addition to being a funny actor, comedian, and overall cool dude, it’s becoming more of a widely known fact that Aziz Ansari is an outspoken feminist. In his new special out on Netflix, Aziz Ansari: Live at Madison Square Garden, he delves into more mature subjects than he’s done in the past, focusing a lot of his material on dating, relationships, and marriage, as well as feminism and the messed up sh*t women have to put up with on an everyday basis.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard this kind of rhetoric from Ansari. Last fall, he appeared on the Late Show with Dave Letterman, where he generalized feminism (in a good way) to demonstrate why men and women should almost universally consider themselves feminists.
However, as is often the case with sensitive subject matter, there was some backlash to his statements with certain groups accusing him on generalizing feminism (in the bad way) by making it seem to be much less complicated than it is.
Cosmopolitan recently spoke to Ansari on the subject:
Well, it’s a 30-second snippet from a talk show, and I’m talking to David Letterman and an audience of men and women, so that kind of eliminates the mansplaining aspect of it. We just live in this world where people are ready to talk down people on blogs or Twitter or whatever, but to me the test is — let’s say you’re someone who criticizes things that I said on Letterman. I would just want to sit down and say, “OK, did you really think that I had ill intentions in my heart? Don’t you think that what I was trying to say was a positive thing? Did it really seem like I was trying to talk down to women? Did it really seem like that was my intention? Don’t you think that, deep down in my heart, I was trying to say something interesting and positive — and funny? Do you really have to write some mean thing? Isn’t there much worse sh*t going on? Am I really the target? Is that really where you want to aim?” I don’t know, that’s just where I’m at with that.
You tell ’em, Aziz. I don’t really get the rationale of someone who criticizes a person putting out a positive message for a cause they believe in, just because the message isn’t the same as the listener’s. Chalk it up to “the internet,” I guess.
In case you missed it, Aziz Ansari’s original bit on Letterman below: