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The San Jose comedy club that hosted a Louis C.K. show on Wednesday night said in response to protests that erupted outside its doors, “we don’t censor artists.”
“We see comedy as the final frontier and we don’t censor artists. We want them to perform without scrutiny,” Improv Comedy Clubs, the owner of the San Jose Improv where C.K. performed, said in a statement. “We trust that our audiences can decide for themselves what their limits are. We understand that not everyone will agree with our decision and we respect their right to protest. We also respect Louis C.K.’s right to perform.”
Reporters outside the Improv on Wednesday night tweeted photos of organizers protesting the event, with signs saying “I stand with survivors” and “There is no greater threat to women than men.” San Francisco Chronicle reporter Peter Hartlaub said that protesters were shouting “Shame!” and “San Jose, not Man Jose,” as ticketholders walked into the venue. A sign from the Enough Is Enough Voter Project, whose chair, Michele Dauber, was also at the protest, is visible in some images.
Harlaub reported that one protester, a man who called himself “George Doe,” said he was punched in the face while protesting. Harlaub wrote that police arrived at the scene and took a statement. (The San Jose Police Department has not yet responded to a request for comment from The Hollywood Reporter.)
C.K.’s appearance at the San Jose Improv follows several appearances the comedian has made since he was first accused of sexual misconduct in November 2017. C.K. has performed several times at New York’s Comedy Cellar and done bits at New York’s West Side Comedy Club and Paris’ Le Theatre de L’Oeuvre.
C.K. is set to perform at the San Jose Improv again on Thursday night, according to the venue’s website.
One violent moment.
This man, who identified himself as “George Doe,” was in a second protest across the street, yelling at ticket-holders through a bullhorn. Another man walked across the street and punched him.
Police arrived and took a statement. pic.twitter.com/Q6xWpjhT0r
— Peter Hartlaub (@peterhartlaub) January 17, 2019
San Jose says NO to Louis CK and shame on ?@ImprovSanJose? More than 30 people, including many men, stood in the pouring rain for an hour to protest normalizing sexual harassers. ?@mercnews? ?@ekadvany? ?@JesseKTVU? ?@AzenithKTVU? ?@TigNotaro? pic.twitter.com/erUQkNZqX3
— Michele Dauber (@mldauber) January 17, 2019
— Azenith Smith (@AzenithKTVU) January 17, 2019
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