Following a New Jersey mayor pressuring a venue to cancel one of his shows, comedian Josh Denny spoke up about “the America we wanna live in” and what happens after they “come for the comedians first.”
(Video: via Fox News )
On Nov. 10, Los Angeles-based Denny was preparing for the latest installment of the “Cognitive Dissidents Tour” with radio host Anthony Cumia and podcaster Gavin McInnes at The Williams Center in Rutherford, NJ when he learned it had become the fourth venue to get pressured into shutting down the appearance.
As previously reported, Fox News host Tucker Carlson addressed the matter and said, “Hundreds of Antifa-affiliated Twitter accounts started bombarding the venue…They also went after the chief of police of Rutherford…and they threatened violence,” leading the city to cave to demands.
However, Denny suggested there was more to the story the venue was seeking funds to revitalize and, “Essentially, the police chief at behest of the mayor told them if you don’t cancel this show then we can’t guarantee that your redevelopment funding isn’t gonna be pulled off the table on Monday,” which, the comedian explained, happened anyway.
Meanwhile, Mayor Frank Nunziato publicly claimed in a statement, “Unbeknownst to the Borough, an event was planned for this evening at the Williams Center, news of which quickly circulated through social media. Online intelligence led the Police Department to believe that the event had the potential for confrontation.”
Please see the following statement from Mayor Nunziato pic.twitter.com/BchVXfD937
— Borough of Rutherford (@Rutherford07070) November 10, 2022
“After discussions with the owner,” Nunziato phrased it, the event was canceled.
“We’ve gone from liberal activists convincing business owners not to host us all the way to city government officials essentially racketeering and threatening the venue owners if they’re willing to allow us to perform and speak,” Denny told Fox News.
Despite the claims from officials, the comedian said that of the nine shows performed since the tour began in June, there has never been any violence and what happened was merely an attack on free speech.
“The concept of hate speech is one of the worst marketings that we’ve allowed to happen in America because anybody can sort of label ideas they don’t like as hate speech,” he said, noting of the trend that has gone after the likes of comedian Dave Chappelle and others and that people “can just call free speech hate speech and have people’s civil rights removed.”
Not only were the men undeterred by the cancellation, but they have also announced that they will be suing the city of Rutherford for standing in the way of their constitutionally protected rights.
“This is not the America we wanna live in and if you’re not willing to be uncomfortable to fight for the America we want to live in,” Denny expressed, “I don’t have any time for you, and we are not on the same team.”
Cancel culture, he warned, will “come for the comedians first, and then everyone else is going to be at the mercy of people abusing their offices of power to excise their own political beliefs.”
Ultimately, he said, “This idea that you cannot be successful while telling the truth is something that we don’t believe in and we’re fighting heavily against.”
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