If laughter is indeed the best medicine, it makes perfect sense for an increasing number of comedians to lead the fight against America’s societal sickness. The pens and microphones of the clever become instruments of health, not to treat the coronavirus, but the ludicrous culture of entitlement, “wokeness” and the enabling the dysfunction du jour.
Using absurdity to mock the absurd is what comedians do best, and America can expect more to take the stage and surgically excise the cancer eating away our country. Lowbrow jokes, silliness and pratfalls remain only a tiny subset of comedy, but satire and wit dominate the humor landscape — and political correctness repulses both.
Wittiness exists in the DNA of this country, but the virus of political correctness demands masks and lockdowns that rival those of COVID-19 while also commanding compliance in ways that would make White House Chief Medical Adviser Anthony Fauci flinch. In the diseased culture of socialism, propaganda replaces parody, and wit becomes a sacrifice on the altar of appeasement.
Yet into America’s sick culture strides the unlikeliest health care providers: the comedians. Out of right field, Greg Gutfeld pushed back on the propped-up network late-night hosts and, with Moe Howard precision, poked two fingers into the eyes of the “hoity-toity.” With a towering intellect, Dave Chappelle strode fearlessly to a microphone and educated a country by calling strikes — and balls. Joe Rogan, Adam Carolla, Dennis Miller and a growing line behind them threw down the rubber chicken and picked up the gauntlet. While they all possess a funny bone, they also bring fierce intelligence.
Contrary to the famous joke, timing is not the only key to comedy. Most comedians affirm that cleverness combined with a willingness to call out the absurdity in any form remains paramount to comedy, and America’s fields of comedy crops stand ripe with material.
Although many groan at the left’s daily march to drive our country into ruins, Americans can take heart in the rising of a new warrior class. The call to action is not political but instead beckons to our innate desire to join with the first brave soul stating that the Emperor has no clothes.
A U.S. Marine turned comedian, Greg Hahn, once stated, “Marines make great comedians — some of the most hilarious things I ever witnessed were in the Corps.”
Comedians, it seems, can also make excellent fighters. Their battlefield and weapons might be different, but their skill and courage can help win a cultural war.
“The left wants to transform America away from founding ideals, and this is it. And they know it. And they’re doing everything they, and they’ve got the media helping them and so forth. I think one of the ways of exposing ’em is to ridicule ’em. I mean, laughter is the simplest way to humiliate somebody. Laugh at them; it shrinks them,” said Rush Limbaugh.
Others now stand in the place where Limbaugh once stood alone, and the rest of us can lend our voices to theirs. Satire is not simply making fun of something, it is educating others while deflating a balloon that seeks to occupy the entire space. The self-righteous cloak themselves in noble intentions, yet one glaring vulnerability remains. When mocked and laughed at, they crumble.
Many of today’s conventional comedians exchange humor for applause and bask in the HOV lane provided by the media and academia. Yet American comedians come with a lengthy history of resisting overreaching authority. Drunk with power, the left staggers while more jokes about them land with precision. As the comedic pendulum appears to be swinging right, those wrapped in delusional sanctimony might not get the joke, but they’re increasingly serving as the punchline.
• Peter Rosenberger hosts the nationally syndicated radio program “Hope for the Caregiver.”