Often, it’s debated whether comedy itself can actually make a difference in society. How effective a satirical joke mocking various societal establishments is nearly impossible to measure, but one Dick Gregory always made sure that he put action behind the truth that he spoke to power.
Fighting for Civil Rights in the 60s, protesting against the Vietnam War, standing for the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment, and going on hunger strikes for several different other causes are the sorts of things that Dick Gregory did in addition to being lauded as the first black comedian to successfully cross over to play for white audiences in the 60s.
Gregory’s activism and jokes always seem to go hand in hand and that proved true throughout his entire career, which stretched to his final days (Dick was still actively performing at venues throughout 2017).
Yesterday, Saturday, August 19th, Dick Gregory passed away.
So, go down a YouTube rabbit hole, read his books, read books about him, listen to his albums of which there are several, take note that he was on Wondershowzen of all shows, and do anything else to pay your respects to one of the true comedy legends and the sort of person that might have actually given you hope about America.