Humor needs to reveal a truth

If humor does not reveal a truth, if instead it is vile and bitter, it says more about the humorist than it does about its target. Bosell uses one of the Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim” format’s shows “Moral Orel” as an example in Shower after adult swim at Human Events Online.

Too much comedy today comes soaked in bile, oozing with cynicism, and when it unloads insults, it means them with a vengeance. Vicious mockery is so common on television today that it’s in danger of seeming blase. Mockery is sometimes so frenzied that the satire doesn’t even come close to resembling the target.

In other words, humor becomes a personal attack rather than constructive feedback. It reveals negative emotions – hatred, bigotry, intolerance – rather than clarifying truths. The humor is being used to elevate its producer over its targets rather than to elevate its target as human and worthy.

Imagine, if you can, the long stream of producers and actors and writers and artists and executives who work on the assembly line of a TV production like this. No one in this imposing chorus seems to have had a fleeting thought that this series of unfunny, wildly inaccurate smears crosses a line from good-natured ribbing to mean-spirited character assassination.

The ‘humor’ becomes narcistic propaganda. Its perpetrators are often unaware of what they are saying about themselves. In this vein it harms us all.

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