This wasn’t what I had in mind to write, but then I was on a twitch stream today and someone mentioned that they were glad that the particular host – who I enjoyed – was understanding of the fact that this person was a troll and shouldn’t be taken to heart. It was a locker room atmosphere and they felt like they could just be bruhs and laugh.
Mind, the streamer was super tactful and graceful and firm in his response
What is wrong with us?
Seriously, what is our problem?
I get that we grew up on the tasty forbidden fruit of things like Andrew Dice Clay, Sam Kinison, and so many others that we laughed at because they were irreverent. Disrespectful. Nothing was sacred.
Humor, right? We should all just be OK with things because we need to just understand that things in the world can, and should, be laughed at. Every single thing in the world.
Then we reached 2014. 2016. 2017. Like, at one point, we used to laugh at things like racist stereotypes, but I spend five minutes on twitter and that laughter cuts like glass. We used to laugh at crazy dictators. Now we practically have one. We used to do so many things, but then empathy.
But then compassion.
But then, I had to stop laughing long enough to understand other people’s tears for a time. I can still laugh. I can still make someone laugh. Somehow, all of this, while being mindful of what the cost of that joke is.
Some days, I get a discount from life and the laugh costs me nothing. These days, however, that same laugh at the wrong time can cost us lifelong friends. Is that worth our freedom to laugh at whomever and whatever we want? Do we try to imagine an in-between? Do we make a change to an acquired taste for shock value?
Maybe we should.