Chris Rock on racism, protests: ‘Humanity isn’t progress’

Actor and comedian Chris Rock opens up on racism, working on 'Fargo' and more in a new interview.

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With a new show debuting soon during a pandemic, national uprisings and an presidential election, Chris Rock talks about the current state of himself and the world.

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During an interview with the New York Times, the comedian shares how the pandemic has impacted both his comedy and acting. Back in July, Rock traveled to Yellow Springs, Ohio to perform at an event organized by Dave Chappelle. He describes doing stand-up for an audience who came out to watch his show despite the threat of coronavirus.

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“When you’re in the clubs, you learn the rain crowd is the best crowd. Any time it’s raining, they really want to be there. The pandemic crowd is really good. ‘Dude, not only do we want to be here, there is nothing else to do. There’s nothing else to watch. Thank you,’” he remarks.

The 55-year-old actor also shares his experience completing the fiulmining for the upocoming television sries Fargo during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s weird, quarantine when you’re acting. Acting can be isolating, anyway, and then you throw quarantine into that. You’re in solitary confinement with Netflix and Uber Eats,” says Rock.

“But let’s not get it too twisted. Somebody that’s in solitary is like, shut the [expletive] up. And then to actually act and get tested every other day, and wear a mask whenever you’re not saying your lines. And be cognizant of which zone you’re in. Because for Zone A, everyone’s been tested, but in Zone B, not everyone’s been tested. Zone C is just, everyone’s got Covid.”

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The I Think I Love My Wife star also shared his opinion on race relations in the United States. According to Rock, racism and discriminatory practices are not going away and the concept of progress being beneficial for White people, not the Black people making the landmark moves.

“It’s real. It’s not going away. I said this before, but Obama becoming the president, it’s progress for white people. It’s not progress for Black people. It’s the Jackie Robinson thing. It’s written like he broke a barrier, as if there weren’t Black people that could play before him. And that’s how white people have learned about racism,” he remarks in the feature story.

“Humanity isn’t progress — it’s only progress for the person that’s taking your humanity. If a woman’s in an abusive relationship and her husband stops beating her, you wouldn’t say she’s made progress, right? But that’s what we do with Black people. We’re constantly told that we’re making progress.”

People's Choice Awards 2018 - Arrivals
SANTA MONICA, CA – NOVEMBER 11: Jimmy Fallon attends the People’s Choice Awards 2018 at Barker Hangar on November 11, 2018 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images)

Rock also spoke on his Hollywood peer and friend Jimmy Fallon and his recent blackface scandal. theGrio reported, The Tonight Show host apologized back in May for a resurfaced Saturday Night Live skit from 2000 where he wore dark makeup on his face to impersonate Rock for a skit. His actions were defended by Jamie Foxx who according to theGrio called the outrage a stretch.

Rock told the Times he was not offended by the blackface.

“I’m friends with Jimmy. Jimmy’s a great guy. And he didn’t mean anything. A lot of people want to say intention doesn’t matter, but it does. And I don’t think Jimmy Fallon intended to hurt me. And he didn’t.”

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