Louis C.K., Dad Moments, and the Shifting of Power

Nappoholics Anonymous is a weekly column featuring twelve random thoughts by actor Tony Nappo. Some are funny, some are poignant, some bother him, and some make him weep from sadness while others make him weep for joy. Here are his thoughts: unfiltered, uncensored, and only occasionally unsafe for work.

1. When people were saying Louis C.K. was HANDS DOWN the funniest comedian around, I bet even they didn’t have a fucking clue how accurate they were being.

2. They also said that baptisms were the ideal place to drown unwanted babies “by accident.”

3. Top 5 American Versions of Canadian Plays

5- Dry Lips Oughtta Move Back to Wherever the Hell They Came From

4- Little Mercy’s First Mass Murder

3- For the Pleasure of Seeing Her Lose

2- White Biting Everyone

1- Between the Tweets

4. It certainly would be if careers could have wills.

5. A new YouTube channel called encore+ is about to be launched and it is going to feature only “decades of Canadian film and TV gold” programming which, in my mind, can only mean one thing for certain: Art Hindle and Barry Flatman are about to become billionaires.

6.

7. Took Ella makeup shopping at Sephora for her birthday. I really enjoy dancing in the store to embarrass her a bit. She very discreetly and politely (I’m paying) says to me, “Dad, can you please stop?”

Me- You know, one day when I am dead, you’ll look back on these moments—

Ella- Yeah. I’ll look back on these moments and think…

(She stops herself)

Me- Thank God he’s dead?

Silent smile.

8. Guest Post of the Week:

9. If you look up Scarborough 1985 in the dictionary…

10. Before Bad Blood aired and I saw a streetcar coming with a giant ad for the show all over the side of it, I used to get all tingly inside and think, “Here comes my big break!!!” Now that it has aired and been a huge success, when one of them goes by me, I just kind of stare at it with glazed eyes and watch it fade away into the distance and think, “So long, Big Break. Hope to see you again someday.”

11. Classic Aidan Devine.

12. It’s a very hard time for a lot of people right now. A time of anger. A time of judgment. A time for demanding justice that is long overdue. As we all know, there have been many recent revelations about some people—heroes to many—who have created a lot of brilliant work over the years. These people have been able to keep their skeletons hidden for years or even decades. But the day of reckoning has arrived.

I have spoken to many victims recently regarding their stories, and what they have told me, in every single case, is that they want their offenders to be stopped and punished. The system, it would seem, before now has protected the offenders and not the victims, the James Toback case being an obvious local example. What happened there was literally criminal—a director masturbating in front of actors on set, and, in one case we know of, actually ejaculating ON an actor in rehearsal. Why wasn’t he stopped? There were seventy-two written complaints to the union about his behaviour.

I spoke to one woman who took her complaint about another man to ACTRA, our union, and they arranged a settlement with her where they suggested an (unwritten) apology by the man who harassed her in exchange for her silence about the incident. This is a union that likes to send out press releases with things like #silentnomore and #zerotolerance. And, not only is the offender in this case a repeat offender (I have been told firsthand about him by more than a couple of other women), but he works very closely with the leaders and members of ACTRA on a regular basis, and ACTRA fully knows about the complaints. It’s great that ACTRA is offering counselling and roundtable talks in safe places, but offenders need to be stopped; repeat offenders even more so. Still, at the end of the day, the union is not responsible for the actions of the guilty. They are just part of a bigger system that has enabled them and miserably failed the victims.

The stones that are being virtually cast right now are primarily being cast at those who have abused their power, which, to a large degree, has been afforded to them by simply being born male and by their status as celebrities, to whatever degree. These stones are being thrown in such great numbers and with such velocity because of the decades of frustration victims have felt, without justice, even though, as it has been said many times now, “everyone has always known.”

The abuse of power is doubled in most cases after the initial offence by the threat hanging over the head of any victim who dares report such an offence, whether it be stated outright or implied. The perpetrators and/or their teams have spent time hiding their offences through anything from denial/dismissal/discrediting to outright threats or bullying. So the victims are being victimized twice. The second time, by attempting to turn them into “offenders” themselves for threatening to endanger or end the career of any given celebrity by simply telling the truth.

Here is my point. I see the current purge and cleanse movement as a new line being drawn—whether intentionally or not—which has always been implied but never clearly defined. One that says basic human decency supersedes talent. One that says you can’t do whatever the fuck you want to whomever you choose just because you are famous or well-connected. One that says—and this, I believe, is key—WE gave you celebrity status and all of the power that accompanies it, but we also retain the power to take it back, any fucking time we choose to. And THAT is something to be celebrated, that shift in the balance of power. We are taking back OUR power and owning it and using it for the greater good.

I don’t think it is any coincidence that this is all happening while Trump makes a mockery of the most powerful office in the free world, daily. A time when denying rights to women, Muslims, African-Americans and -Canadians, Indigenous Peoples, and the LGBTQ community is no longer even news. A time when people stateside have the right to carry automatic weapons and there are weekly mass murders.

These occurrences of harassment we are reading about hourly and casting stones at are, ultimately, not about sex, although I think that is an element that many people are responding to in many of the comments I have read. The offences are all about power in a time when people in North America are frustrated by a social and political climate that makes us all feel so powerless.

The one power we are discovering that we do have, collectively, is the power to rescind the privilege that we have awarded, by demanding a higher standard of conduct. And that this is happening now gives me faith that change can happen. It is, in fact, already happening. I believe that this change will be a real and lasting one. This is just the beginning. I believe that it will continue to happen in other areas of society besides entertainment, as the masses collectively reassess and seek to redefine what is and is not an acceptable way to treat any human being in 2017, because it is long past the time now for this abuse of power to end. At the absolute least, it’s time to stop covering it up and enabling it.

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Written By

Tony is Italian, he’s from Scarborough, he’s an actor, he’s a father, he’s a really good house painter, and he doesn’t believe that most things matter, ultimately, at all.


One response to “Louis C.K., Dad Moments, and the Shifting of Power”

  1. Yes! Thanks for your last entry. As to #11, I’ve tried to sleep through auditions… but I snore and that’s taken as over acting.

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