Sean Strickland claims his recent homophobic tweets were just a big wind-up | Jasmin Frank, USA Today Sports

Sean Strickland’s recent tweets were insulting, degrading, dehumanizing, and unspeakably vile.

And I’m not even talking about the homophobia. That went so far beyond the pale that it snuck up on the pale from behind and placed it in a guillotine chokehold until the pale tapped out.

Instead, I’m referring to the way Strickland justified his repugnant words, falling back on the most hackneyed “comeback” from every ignorant bully who’s ever been called out on their awfulness…

“All can’t take a joke.”

First off, I know better than to go to a UFC fighter like Strickland for lessons on proper sentence construction but it’s still worth noting: I’ve never seen anyone so committed to his hatred of pronouns that he avoids the word “you.”

However, I can’t help but notice that Strickland’s tweets also include “and” and “but.” It should be interesting to hear his response after someone points out that these are transition words. Strickland has been speaking English his whole life and now it’s joined the woke mob!

Give it a week and his feed will consist of nothing but Kid Rock lyrics.

More importantly, the “anyone who’s offended by my clearly offensive bigotry is someone who can’t take a joke” response is incredibly tired and insulting to the intelligence of anyone who has actually told one successful joke in their lives.

To state the obvious, Strickland’s words resemble jokes about as much as they resemble the Magna Carta. These are the kind of “jokes” uttered by someone who thinks the definition of a punchline is “the line I say before I punch you in the face.”

Strickland’s hatespeech is repugnant enough. But to insist that it was actually a joke and that the fault is ours for not getting it is what’s truly an affront.

To paraphrase an exchange from Seinfeld

“And this offends you as a gay man?”

No, it offends me as a comedian.

As anyone who’s ever tried to develop a joke can tell you, it’s a laborious process fraught with peril and rejection. The only way to learn the craft of comedy is to fail over and over until you gradually get a sense of what doesn’t suck.

In that sense, it’s a bit like emotional MMA. Because of that, everybody who works at it develops a genuine respect for good jokes and their ability to crush a crowd.

So when a troglodyte like Strickland tries to relabel his hatespeech as jokes, it’s infuriating.

If Strickland is so insistent that it’s our fault that we got mad about his bigotry because “all can’t take a joke,” I have a proposition for him.

Go onstage at a comedy show and try unloading your thoughts before an audience. Any venue — comedy club, bar show, even an open mic. Feel the visceral disgust of the crowd response and see if you can dig yourself out of that hole.

Everybody who’s ever tried to tell jokes has had to do that at some point. If you want to claim that’s what you’re tweeting, you should be able to do it too.

And no, you can’t weasel out on a technicality by doing a spot for Joe Rogan. I said it had to be a comedy show.

No matter what missteps I make for the rest of my life, I will never claim to be an MMA fighter because there’s no way on earth I could ever do that unless the UFC makes it legal to make your opponent submit through passive resistance.

All it takes to admit that is a base level of self-awareness. If Strickland ever develops that quality, maybe at that point he’ll learn enough to stay out of my dojo.

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