Presumably you’ve heard all about Daniel Tosh’s recent hilarious take on rape. A woman in the audience yelled out that rape jokes aren’t funny and…
From Cookies For Breakfast:
After I called out to him, Tosh paused for a moment. Then, he says, “Wouldn’t it be funny if that girl got raped by like, 5 guys right now? Like right now? What if a bunch of guys just raped her…” and I, completely stunned and finding it hard to process what was happening but knowing i needed to get out of there, immediately nudged my friend, who was also completely stunned, and we high-tailed it out of there. It was humiliating, of course, especially as the audience guffawed in response to Tosh, their eyes following us as we made our way out of there. I didn’t hear the rest of what he said about me.
A good comedian can joke about anything. But the thing is, you have to be an actual good comedian. Comedian is a noble profession. The comedian can/should use his power to challenge the powerful and the oppressor, and/or help the powerless get through another shitty day. The Jester mocks the king. A comedian who abuses his power is like a police officer who abuses his. They’re entrusted with the power to help the powerless, and it’s a gross violation when they turn around and use that power to prey on the weak.
Done right, you have Jeff Foxworthy helping his fellow rednecks laugh at their plight in life and keep on plugging. Done wrong, you’re Michael Richards. Or Tosh.
To be fair, Tosh is pretty objectively good at comedy. This was just an exception.