T Q&A 

Lewis Black

Lewis Black

Lewis Black's rant is overdue. It's been four years since the 65-year-old best-selling author, actor, playwright and comedian brought his act to the Southwest. You might have seen Black on The Daily Show or heard his voiceover work on Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or The Penguins of Madagascar. Black is going to play the angry voice in Amy Poehler's head in the upcoming Disney/Pixar animated film Joy. The social commentator will be back in Tucson at 8 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 27, at the Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave.

How can you justify coming to a state where the superintendent of public instruction would suggest parents send their kids to private schools?

Somebody has to come and talk some sense to you people before you give up and drift away completely. I don't know if it's the sun that's gotten too close to you or what. I don't know if it's the heat. A lot of that stuff is occurring all around the country. There are pockets where given the shot, stupid people go for it.

Where does the blame fall most? Is it the lawmakers or the voters?

I don't tend to blame the people unless you're in South Dakota where there are 300,000 of you. A lot of people this affects are working two jobs, and they don't have the time to look into this. They are struggling to keep food on the table and keep a roof over their houses. But with a city like Phoenix, you have to wonder what the fuck is going on. There are some things I like about John McCain but I think he listened to too many idiots in his party. But he shouldn't be twittering. None of them should be tweeting.

Why not?

They just shouldn't do it. Just move on. Senators and congressman don't have time for this. There's too much work to be done to be telling me your reaction to whatever. They aren't there that much of the year, so use it. You want to Twitter when you're wandering around with your campaign, fine. Oh, you loved the game today? Rooting for the Seahawks? Fuck you!

A federal judge recently overturned Virginia's ban on same-sex marriage. When do you think civil equality will be accepted in the United States and all over the world?

It's a matter a time. I don't know what the time is, but it won't be long. It's astonishing considering where we were 10 years ago. A lot of it has to do with kids, and kids get it. My generation is unbelievable. It's like, really? Have you learned nothing over the course of time? Anyone living under the age of 25 is living in a different world. We are going from one age to another and a lot of the leaders are ill-equipped to deal with it. We are moving at the speed of fucking light and these idiots are tourists.

Considering the state of planet Earth as a whole, are you hopeful for the future?

I'm hopeful in the sense that I don't know how much leeway we have for it to get worse. The only way we've got to go—even by accident—is the right direction. You can only go backwards for so long. I always have faith in people. I think that through whatever drawbacks your generation may have, there are a lot of steps you've got in the right direction ... if you can keep your eye on the ball, ignore the feeling of being entitled and realize the most important thing in the world isn't money. I'm hoping your generation doesn't become as greedy as mine.

When did you first perform stand-up?

I was at a club where friends of mine used to play music. They said, "Why don't you do some comedy?" I did it because I always wanted to try it. It was horrific.

Who are your favorite comedians? Any up-and-comers to watch for?

I really like Ted Alexandro. He has a new comedy special out. Alexandro is very smart and he's great. I like Eugene Mirman a lot, and he's doing great work. From the beginning, I liked Demetri Martin. There's a whole realm of comics coming along with fresh voices.


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