Scott Robinson (quadhome) wrote,
Scott Robinson

A late follow-up.

Clearly, there was a bit of a disconnect. This happens. Especially, though, when I say a lot in a little space. Let me try another route.

There exists a school of thought teaching that only members of a demographic should engage in self-referential stereotypical lampoon. An arguably reactionary school exists, which believes everyone should grow tougher skins and feel free to carry on with potentially sensitive humour. I've met many who purport to subscribe to one or the other doctrine. But, in the safety of ones' own home, offensiveness becomes a continuum.

Even the most sensitive knock out a few ridiculous prejudices. And, it's the rare self-proclaimed jerk who will say the word "nigger" when I call them out.

Stuff White People Like is funny because it's well written. Not because of who wrote it, their irrelevant skin colour, and their very relevant cultural grounding. People have made well reasoned arguments for the author belonging to all genders and coming from a variety of insider and outsider perspectives.

Stuff Educated Black People Like isn't funny because it's a badly written me-too.

Akin to conservatism versus liberalism, neither school is right. Tasteful humour is an ongoing balancing act. I like The Internet because it's an excellent blend of both parties.

Most of us stand in the "troll harder" school of thought. Thus, I gave my hypothetical "Stuff That Poor People Like" as a thought experiment. I hoped the non-whimsical nature of my suggestions would demonstrate how offensive the above blogs are to some people. And, I chose "poor" people as I felt it was a telling converse to whom the first blog is really about.

"White people", "black people" or even "educated black people" are woefully inadequate terms. If we're going to move past them, though, we need better words for areas on the cultural gradient. One extremist has provided a few.

Anyone else?

Tags: pretentious
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