In an effort to create “an inclusive work environment for all,” World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) announced today that it is tackling its longstanding problems with bullying and “toxic masculinity” by banning physical aggression of any kind.
“Quite frankly, the notion of a good guy versus bad guy in a physical battle is, quite frankly, passe,” says company chairman Vince McMahon in a rare, out-of-character video segment.
“We believe, quite frankly, that audiences are tired of the same old cliches of muscular powerhouses battling for supremacy in a ring,” McMahon continues. “From now on, all disputes and rivalries will be settled through respectful, mediated dialogue aimed at positive solutions.”
The announcement comes amid a week of controversy after the Gillette razor company released an advertisement that sparked widespread controversy for making the ludicrous suggestion that men should try not to be assholes.
Already being described by pundits as WWE’s “Inclusion Era,” this new direction for WWE will eschew hand-to-hand combat in favour of team-building exercises, trust games, drum circles, and something called “empathy exchanges.”
The announcement has been met with some criticism online from fans and journalists who feel the Inclusion Era represents yet another step for WWE down a slippery slope of political correctness and liberal pandering.
WWE Universal Champion Brock Lesnar, however, applauded the decision, telling one interviewer that he has “never enjoyed fighting anyway” and would “much rather engage in spirited but collegial debate on issues that truly matter.”