What do dashing Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and comedian Jerry Seinfeld have in common? Well, for one thing, they both have the same method for responding to hecklers.
It all began when a town hall being hosted by Trudeau was interrupted by determined hecklers.
So what did Trudeau do? He used what some have called “the Seinfeld approach.”
Another heckler in the crowd trying to speak over a young woman who was in the middle of asking a question at the Trudeau Town Hall. pic.twitter.com/DnC8B8qjeb
— myFM News (@myFM_News941) January 12, 2018
Trudeau artfully engaged his hecklers, at one point asking the audience to give applause to the heckler for sharing their thoughts.
Very early on in my career, I hit upon this idea of being the Heckle Therapist. So that when people would say something nasty I would immediately become very sympathetic to them, and try to help them with their problem, and try to work out what was upsetting them, and try to be very understanding with their anger. It opened up this whole fun avenue for me as a comedian, and no one had ever seen that before.
Seinfeld would say things like “‘You seem so upset, and I know that’s not what you wanted to have happen tonight. Let’s talk about your problem,'” to ease the outburst.
It seemed that others noticed as well.
It's gold Jerry, it's gold!!! https://t.co/ydKeTu09eb
— sarbour (@sarbour) January 23, 2018
Really thought this was going to be a “I don’t come to McDonalds and tell you how to do your job” thing. ¯_(ツ)_/¯
— TJGoff (@TJGoff) January 23, 2018
I work in customer service. Maybe I should use the Seinfeld approach as well!
— frank (@franco426) January 23, 2018
And as for the man himself, he excitedly shared the moment on Twitter.
TRUDEAU TURNS TO SEINFELD TACTICS TO TAME TOWN HALL HECKLERS https://t.co/VJkla5Ac11
Try throwing paper towels into the crowd.
— Jerry Seinfeld (@JerrySeinfeld) January 23, 2018