Three years ago, famed comedian Jerry Seinfeld, laid into a campus culture that has instituted ‘safe’ zones that routinely ban or aggressively silence free speech. Other noted performers such as Chris Rock have also distanced themselves from campuses over the worrying climate that continues to demand silence on topics that university officials deem unsavory.
On Tuesday night, star comedian Hannibal Buress’s microphone was silenced by Loyola Chicago officials after he maligned a conditional agreement he had to sign when he showed up to perform. As part of the agreement, Buress wasn’t allowed to speak about rape, sexual assault, race, or sexual orientation.
Naturally, Buress burned an unmistakable hole in the paper the second he walked on stage. He began the set at the by showing the contract on a projected screen behind his performance. While joking about the history of sexual abuse at the hands of the Catholic church, Buress’s microphone was silenced by school administrators who said that he was in violation of the contractual agreements.
The crowd booed at the censorship with some audience members turning to popular social media outlets to express their displeasure:
Buress attempted to continue on without a microphone but his voice was drowned out by loud background music funneled into the auditorium. After taking a 20-minute break, the shock comedian returned to stage and finished his set by yelling from the stage. He received a standing ovation.
A well-known provocateur throughout the comedy world, many have questioned why the heavily religious university would have invited him in the first place. A quick viewing of his work as co-host on the Eric Andre Show should have warned off school administrators with a dislike for controversial comedy.
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