wrestling / Columns

Cancel Jim Cornette? Nah, Just Ignore Him!

November 21, 2019 | Posted by Steve Cook
Jim Cornette

One of peoples’ favorite things to complain about these days is the idea of “cancel culture”. Basically, what happens is that a celebrity says or does something questionable, and a certain portion of the public (usually social media users) decides that nothing the celebrity has done prior has ever mattered & they should not be allowed to do anything productive again. Depending on the level of backlash, the celebrity’s current employers may feel the need to sever ties in order to protect their company’s brand. The celebrity, in effect, has been cancelled.

Some feel this isn’t fair, and serves as yet another example of how political correctness has overtaken all sense of reason. I feel they have a point. Just because a person has made an error in judgement doesn’t mean that they should never be able to make a living or have their opinions heard again. Our airwaves would eventually become barren, which, now that I think about it, might be an argument in favor of cancel culture. Nevertheless, the idea that somebody should lose their job based off of one mistake, especially if it’s an uninformed or non-woke opinion, isn’t one I can get behind.

However, should one continually stick their foot in their mouth while on the airwaves, or on the stream, I get it. I can understand feeling angst towards the individual that never learns. Some people are just like that. They’re set in their ways, and if you don’t agree with them they really don’t give a damn. If they keep making the same errors in judgment, at some point it’s on their employer to take action.

Billy Corgan & Dave Lagana should have seen this coming.

If you’ve been watching NWA Powerrr on YouTube, you know that the show, on purpose, has a very 1980s feel to it. The stuido they tape in bears a strong resemblance to the old Techwood Drive studio that Georgia/World Championship Wrestling used to tape shows in. The logos, graphics & music all scream 80s. The format of the show is very similar to studio wrestling shows from the 1980s. Lots of squash matches, occasional matches with stars against stars, interviews at a podium. The NWA Champion, Nick Aldis, conducts himself in a style very similar to the persona of Ric Flair back in the day. His “insurance policy” Kamille talks as much as the womenfolk were allowed to talk back then.

We’ve seen Austin Idol & Tony Falk doing commercials. The Rock N’ Roll Express has appeared. And, of course, Jim Cornette has been on commentary. If you’re going to do a wrestling show that’s an ode to the 1980s, Cornette is a great guy to have talking during the matches. He’s rarely at a loss for words and his wrestling mindset has always been old school.

The only problem? As much as one might love the 1980s, some things have evolved in certain ways. Bobby Heenan & Jesse Ventura said all kinds of things on WWF commentary back then that wouldn’t fly today. We’ll never know for sure, but one thinks that they could have found a way to evolve. Maybe. Cornette hasn’t. He’s still out here using the same jokes that he used in the 1980s, the last time they were topical.

Some people will feel compelled to tell you that Cornette’s joke wasn’t racist in any way, as they’re experts on these things. We’ve had this discussion fairly recently during the Jordan Myles/ACH fiasco. I don’t get to tell you what’s racist and what isn’t. All I know is that Fuzzy Zoeller (another Louisville guy, by the way) was cancelled twenty years ago when he made a reference to fried chicken while talking about Tiger Woods. Personally, I love fried chicken and I think most right-thinking people do as well, but for some reason racists like using it for attempts at humor.

Won’t somebody think of the chicken?

Cancel culture means well in some ways. The hope, I assume, is that people will change their ways and become better as human beings. The issue is that most of the “cancelled” folk don’t learn anything. What are the odds of Jim Cornette learning anything here?

Not great. We all know where this is going. We’ve seen it pretty recently in the sports world, as a matter of fact.

Cornette’s Corner

Another broadcaster recently in the news has a lot in common with Jim Cornette. Don Cherry became well-known as a hockey coach and later became a broadcast journalist, much like Cornette transitioning from managing to announcing. Cherry is an outspoken individual that’s stuck in his ways, and none of us would deny that describes Jim Cornette to a T. Both men made it as far as they have by being loud and straddling the line of decency.

Cherry also recently crossed the line on television and lost his gig. Like with Cornette, it was only a matter of time before it finally happened. Like Cornette, Cherry didn’t apologize for anything and has moved on to podcasting.

Now, Cherry had a bit bigger of a fall. Appearing on Hockey Night in Canada on CBC is several steps ahead of appearing on NWA on YouTube. But it’s tough to say that any of this has affected his popularity with his fans. People already liked him or didn’t. This didn’t change anybody’s mind. Cherry still has his dedicated followers that liked him precisely because of the things he said that eventually got him fired.

The same applies for Cornette. His Cult, as he calls it, will support him no matter what. One thing’s for sure, they’re not going to abandon ship over Cornette saying something offensive. Hell, saying offensive things is what got Corny over in the first place.

You can’t cancel Jim Cornette.

The guy’s going to keep doing his thing for the rest of his life. If you’re expecting some kind of an apology coming from him, you’ll be waiting a long time. As far as he’s concerned, he’s in the right and all the complainers are special snowflakes that don’t get his unique brand of comedy. He’s happy he won’t have to drive to Atlanta anymore.

You can try to cancel Cornette, but guys like him never really get cancelled. The best thing to do if you feel strongly about your disdain towards him? Ignore him! Don’t listen to his podcast. Don’t click on his tweets. Lord knows there’s plenty of other people in wrestling worth paying attention to, and most of them aren’t quite as toxic.

Take a look at Kenny Bolin. He cut ties with Cornette a couple of years back after they were best friends for longer than most of us have been alive. Dude just couldn’t handle the nonsense any more. Since then, he’s lost a couple hundred pounds and seems to have a new lease on life. If somebody or something is causing you that much grief, it’s ok to put it on the ignore list.

People like me that have to keep up with this stuff for the sake of having writing material will keep you informed.

article topics :

Jim Cornette, NWA, Steve Cook