This might be my third or fourth post on censorship on MAM. At MAM, we are fairly clearly that art needs no censorship and we have expressed our support to Kamal Hassan and Vijay via our site.
In a country like ours the problem is everyone wants to laugh at others, but not at themselves. The reason being we are insecure pricks. We do not feel ashamed to laugh at jokes which makes fun of brown or black colour, even though most Indians are brown themselves.
Heck, we know a singer has been apologising to a Bollywood star, because the star could not take a comment sportively and move on. Now we all know that we are currently facing one of the worst droughts in recent times, growing unemployment, our farmers are committing suicide and yet none of these bothers us, what boils our blood is a Snapchat video.
Now what sensible people would do is ignore the video or comment on why the art (Snapchat Video) does not work for them or make a counter video. But then when a situation like this comes along we see that there aren’t too many sensible people around. Now we have Bollywood actors tweeting, stars who are tongue tied usually have advice to give to lesser mortals.
Like Anupam Kher first stressed that he is a 9 times comedy actor award winner, now I do not know which awards is he referring to considering we have them like a dime a dozen. Did any one appoint Anupam as minister of humour to decide what humour is or not?
Riteish was shocked and now I am considering homophobic jokes in Kya Cool Hai Hum were pretty normal, since we are one of the few nations which refuse to even debate on the illegality of 377 A.
Celina went one step ahead, saying Tanmay Bhatt should apologize, because she was not amused. Neither were we amused when one of her films Jawani Diwani emphasized that if you sleep with someone the girl needs to marry that guy.
I understand people may like some works of art, while some may not like it for various reasons which includes our personal preferences and our exposure.
But does that mean we have right a to shut down an artist, ask him to apologise just because it does not suit our taste? Who are these people in the first place, the self-appointed guardians of humour or culture who will decide what an artist should create or what people should watch.
The truth is that the video has been enjoyed by more people than by those who are outraged by it. The proof of that is Tanmay’s Snapchat or Twitter followers are still there, or I may be wrong if most of these followers are from a xenophobic party which is waiting for his next video so that they can file an FIR against him, meanwhile farmers be damned.
The reaction to the video has been downright nasty, while people claim that they are fans of icons and they are disturbed by the video which in the first place no one is forced to watch unlike Swatch Bharat Cess, which all of us have to pay without a choice. All comments have been targeting the physicality of Tanmay, in fact that is my greatest fear,if we an ban artist like Tanmay, we would end up with comedians who only to know poke fun at physicality of people.
Humour is one of the greatest virtues in a successful democracy and we need to safeguard it.
In the end, all I have to say if anything does not entertain you, ignore it. If you want to get offended, go ahead get offended and get angry at your own sense of insecurity and your inability to laugh at a joke.