Actor LeVar Burton (“Star Trek,” “Roots”) believes that the phrase “cancel culture” is a misnomer and that a perfectly appropriate “consequence culture” has erupted in America by holding people accountable for past sins.
Speaking with co-host Meghan McCain on “The View,” Burton was asked about the controversy surrounding Dr. Seuss and his estate’s decision to discontinue six of his books for racist imagery.
“What do you think of that decision and about the cancel culture surrounding works of art or artists that are controversial?” McCain asked.
“You know what, it’s interesting because I just, for the Seuss foundation, did a voiceover for a video they have put together to remind us that Dr. Seuss is more than simply a company that decided to put a couple of books on the shelf, to take them out of that rotation,” Burton said. “That man, Theodor Geisel, is responsible for generations of wholesome, healthy, wonderful, creative content for children of all ages. So, I think we need to put things in perspective.”
Burton even said that there are “good signs” happening in the culture right now.
“In terms of cancel culture, I think it’s misnamed. That’s a misnomer,” he said. “I think we have a consequence culture, and that consequences are finally encompassing everybody in the society, whereas they haven’t been ever in this country. I think there are good signs that are happening in the culture right now. I think it has everything to do with a new awareness on people who were simply unaware of the real nature of life in this country for people who have been othered since this nation began.”
— Justice Dominguez (@justicedeveraux) April 26, 2021
Burton’s rejection of cancel culture as something to be feared follows Marvel actor Don Cheadle recently saying that cancel culture is “not really real.”
“I guess it’s real to the degree that you listen to that noise. I don’t know that people are purely canceled because … I don’t know that there are any pure irredeemable situations unless it’s been deemed, not that you have said something off, but that you are that way and that there is stuff in your past that is consistent with that thing that you said, that one-off thing that looked like a one-off moment,” Cheadle told Fox News earlier this year.
Cheadle added that the nature of social media has created a “live by the sword, die by the sword” environment and that people who often participate in it are dismayed when the system comes back to bite them.
“I think if you live by the sword, you die by the sword… I think that cancel culture, a lot of that is just a fabrication,” he said. “It’s not really real. I don’t think a lot of people who are crying about being canceled are really ‘canceled.’ I think they just don’t enjoy the spot that they had before. And they’ve gotten flack and blowback. Now they want to talk about it in terms of something that is untoward or unfair.”
John Cleese, Ricky Gervais, Bryan Cranston, Rowan Atkinson, Ethan Hawke and many others have all denounced cancel culture in one facet or another.
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