The PC craze behind the resignation of top Apple exec Tony Blevins

I have a movie date for Apple. It’s from a little Bill Murray movie called “Stripes.”

“Relax, Francis.”

The tech giant has Reportedly kicked out Tony Blevinsa top executive and one of 30 employees reporting directly to CEO Tim Cook, after he repeated a bawdy quote (albeit in his own style) from Dudley Moore’s 1981 classic “Arthur.”

To sum up this corporate criminalization of comedy: Blevins, Apple’s vice president of acquisitions, was at a California car show in August when TikToker Daniel Mac, known for asking people in fancy cars what they do for a living, he turned on his camera and asks Blevins.

“I have rich cars, I play golf and I fondle big-breasted women,” Blevins said as he got out of his expensive Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. “But I take weekends and vacations off.”

The woman who was with him, and presumably really knows him, was barely offended. She laughed as if she were in the presence of a reincarnated Richard Pryor.

the the video finally went viral and caught the attention of Apple bosses, who launched an internal investigation into the matter. Though they could have saved themselves the time and work and instead hunkered down for a Liza Minnelli movie marathon.

Apple exec Tony Blevins jokes about a movie quote
Apple executive Tony Blevins referred to a quote from the movie “Arthur” in Daniel Mac’s video that prompted him to leave the company.

Blevins, who joined the company in 2000, saw his 22-year tenure set alight by a seconds-long video. On his way out, he apologized and called it “my misguided attempt at humor.”

It would seem that the good folks who made my iPhone not only lack a general appreciation for good cinema, but are seriously lacking in the grace department.

Gross overreaction aside, canning top talent for an innocuous pop culture reference is a strange path to innovation for the world’s top tech company. according to a 2020 WSJ profile of Blevins, “will stop little by little to get a favorable deal. He has paraded manufacturers in front of their competitors in the Apple lobby and turned down a UPS contract by sending it to UPS executives via FedEx.”

Dudley Moore plays an exuberant rich man from the city in the 1981 film.
Dudley Moore plays an exuberant rich man from the city in the 1981 film “Arthur.”
©Orion Pictures Corp/Courtesy E

Clearly, the man has a unique gift for doing his job that has allowed him to rise to the top of his industry. Imagine an NFL team cutting a Pro Bowl cornerback during the playoffs because he uttered an off-color movie quote or song lyric.

You’re leading the league in interceptions, but you need to pack up your locker and go, son.

Blevins was clearly parodying an already scandalous fictional character, but that doesn’t matter. A nagging mentality has infested corporate America, turning us into gossips, PC bots more interested in uncovering microaggressions than doing effective work.

Perhaps it can be argued that Blevins’s big mistake was simply jumping in and playing. And maybe that’s true. But we get mixed messages from our cultural overlords about what is and is not kosher. On Apple TV+ “Brave” Hillary Clinton interviews rapper Megan Thee Stallion about her hole play “WAP” and gives her the deference she would give a head of state.

Tony Blevins, former vice president of Apple, speaks at an event.
Tony Blevins, former vice president of Apple, speaks at an event.
North Carolina State ISE

We praise libertines one day and yell at others to be prudes the next. Holding on to the pearl is schizophrenic at best.

Humor used to be an essential unifying force in our society, a balm that soothed our harsh differences. As the great Joan Rivers once said, “If we didn’t laugh, where the hell would we all be?”

Sadly, we have the answer in 2022: We’re infantilized adults living in a simulated romper room.

And as we increasingly capitulate to this mentality, we are also willingly crawling into the loser pack.

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