Legendary actor John Cleese has long spoken about his disdain for cancel culture. Now, he’s walking the talk and canceling himself, proving a solid point about selective silencing.
Recently, a Cambridge University debating society banned future appearances by art historian Andrew Graham-Dixon after he impersonated Adolf Hitler to make a point about whether or not “good taste” exists. The Cambridge Union President Keir Bradwell addressed the issue online, saying Graham-Dixon offended members.
“We will create a blacklist of speakers never to be invited back, and we will share it with other unions too. Andrew will be on that list,” Bradwell said.
Cleese, a Cambridge alumnus, was due to appear at the university as part of his Cancel Me documentary series, in which he interviews victims of cancel culture. He said he pulled out because he’d impersonated Hitler earlier in his career.
“I was looking forward to talking to students at the Cambridge Union this Friday, but I hear that someone there has been blacklisted for doing an impersonation of Hitler,” Cleese said. “I regret that I did the same on a Monty Python show, so I am blacklisting myself before someone else does.”
Later, Bradwell claimed he misspoke and said future guests “may say what they wish in our chamber.” But not before Cleese took to social media again to say, “I apologize to anyone at Cambridge who was hoping to talk with me, but perhaps some of you can find a venue where woke rules do not apply.”