Dear cherished readers,
On this, our last issue as Editors of The Flipside, we would like to extend to you our utmost thanks, for our time editing The Flipside has made us extremely wealthy and famous. As we look down at our gold-plated laptops and shiny gold-plated pens, we weep, for we love being so rich. And not only rich — our new status has granted us access to the highest echelons of society, where we rub shoulders with big movie stars like Amy Adams and Dolph Lundgren, the star of Rocky IV.
Still, in between our beautiful-celebrity-only parties/orgies that are exclusively Great Gatsby themed, we have taken a moment to reflect on our humble beginnings as writers for a university satire paper and the role of humor at large.
Comedy has been an incredibly important force in our lives. Humor makes the darkest of situations lighter, from when Hillary Clinton went on Ellen to dab to when Hillary Clinton went on the View to whip and nae nae. Humor has the power to critique and incise. Humor can spotlight inequities that we observe around us.
But humor also has limits; sprinkling in a handful of jokes doesn’t make an argument right, or make an offensive statement inoffensive. And it definitely doesn’t make Donald Trump not the president, no matter how many times he gets roasted by “savage” internet memes.
Much like Donald Trump, humor is a powerful tool. However, recognizing what humor can and cannot do allows us to make room for genuine discourse and healthy criticism. Sometimes, making a silly joke about the alternative to Dance Marathon being “Dan’s Marathon” simply won’t do. Having the courage to expose ourselves to real conversations will lead to new ideas and shifts in perspective, which is, after all, where the best jokes come from. Sometimes, comedy’s limitations are necessary for us to explore our own humanity.
If all this is true, then what is humor, at its most basic level?
It’s simple, really.
Humor, above all else, is a pudgy bulldog riding a skateboard. How’d he get on there? Do you think he can do tricks? Is he going to get a contract with a skateboard company? The possibilities are endless and every single one of them is hilarious.
So go out there, make your own jokes, and please laugh at ours,
Flipside Senior Editorial Board, ‘17