Julia Louis-Dreyfus Says Complaining About Political Correctness Is a "Red Flag" Following Jerry Seinfeld's Viral Comments

She spoke to the New York Times about it.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus of 'Downhill' attends the IMDb Studio at Acura Festival Village on location at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival – Day 2 on January 25, 2020 in Park City, Utah.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Julia Louis-Dreyfus believes political correctness is a positive in comedy.

In a new interview with the New York Times, Louis-Dreyfus was asked to react to the new landscape of more politically correct comedy, and in particular to comments her Seinfeld costar Jerry Seinfeld made recently—which landed him in headlines far and wide.

"If you look back on comedy and drama both, let’s say 30 years ago, through the lens of today, you might find bits and pieces that don’t age well. And I think to have an antenna about sensitivities is not a bad thing," the actress said.

"It doesn’t mean that all comedy goes out the window as a result. When I hear people starting to complain about political correctness—and I understand why people might push back on it—but to me that’s a red flag, because it sometimes means something else. I believe being aware of certain sensitivities is not a bad thing. I don’t know how else to say it."

Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Jerry Seinfeld in 1998.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Jerry Seinfeld in 1998.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

In a recent interview with The New Yorker, Seinfeld said that people "always need" comedy, even (or especially) in dark times, and claimed that they're not getting it these days—that funny shows like Cheers or Mary Tyler Moore don't exist anymore.

"This is the result of the extreme left and P.C. crap, and people worrying so much about offending other people," Seinfeld said. "Now they’re going to see standup comics because we are not policed by anyone. The audience polices us. We know when we’re off track. We know instantly and we adjust to it instantly. But when you write a script and it goes into four or five different hands, committees, groups—'Here’s our thought about this joke.' Well, that’s the end of your comedy."

Later in her New York Times interview, Louis-Dreyfus added, "My feeling about all of it is that political correctness, insofar as it equates to tolerance, is obviously fantastic. And of course I reserve the right to boo anyone who says anything that offends me, while also respecting their right to free speech, right?"

She went on to explain that she feels the real "threat to art" these days isn't political correctness but "the consolidation of money and power" and the "siloing of studios and outlets and streamers and distributors."

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.