Sometimes Murder Is Funny…Right

Happy Birthday America! (Explored!)

A thousand years ago I was the Editor-in-Chief of my college newspaper. It wasn’t unusual for me to receive letters from people who had a problem with what we published because they didn’t like it.

The letters were written by students, faculty, administrators and random people who happened to pick up a copy. One of my favorites was a six page, single spaced essay about why Elvis was the greatest performer ever that included a rant about how he was portrayed in a story we wrote.

I used to read these letters and wonder why some people insisted on reading what we published because no matter what we wrote, it was wrong in their eyes. I saw it as being no different than the person who complained about Howard Stern being on the radio.

If you didn’t like him you could change the station or turn it off. No one was forcing you to listen.

Sometimes Murder Is Funny…Right

A thousand years removed from those days I find myself on the other side.


Well a while back someone started creating YouTube videos that are supposed to be funny. They always show Hitler ranting about something like”Hitler finds out that Google Reader is shutting down.”

These aren’t funny to me. I just don’t see it, can’t get behind using a mass murderer like this. It is not absurd enough for me to chuckle. I am not a fan and I have left a few comments about this.

Some people have been offended that I said I was offended.

I Won’t Apologize

I don’t go looking for these videos but from time to time when I have stumbled onto them I have left a comment and been told that I “just don’t get it” or that “I am uptight” and my favorite, “it is ok, I am Jewish.”

We won’t bother with the discussion about free speech being unlimited because that is not what this is about. But at the same time it is worth noting that your right to post tasteless videos doesn’t preclude me from posting a response saying their tasteless.

It doesn’t mean that I am not allowed to suggest you find other sources of humor. You are welcome to disagree with me, I am good with that but don’t expect me to ignore it or not point out that some people find it offensive.

I won’t apologize for that or for making you uncomfortable because that is just how it goes sometimes.

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  1. David Tucker June 18, 2013 at 6:40 am

    Totally agree with you that murder is never funny. Murderers either. Moreover, I’ve seen tens of these jokes about Hitler’s shock when something is closed. I really don’t get it how some people can find it funny or witty, or at least acceptable.

  2. Lisa Gerber June 17, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    Completely agree, Josh. And! Do you know the “Keep camp and carry on” slogan was originally from 1939 and used to boost morale during the mass bombings of WWII? That meme drives me crazy.

  3. Tim Bonner June 14, 2013 at 5:27 am

    I don’t get it either Josh; tasteless and childish.

    Sometimes it’s better to get things off your chest if you feel strongly about them and as Julie says they should be prepared for a response.

    • Josh June 15, 2013 at 7:46 pm

      Hi Tim,

      I hope that when you read my response you are thoroughly exhausted because a huge birthday celebration sucked all of the energy out of you. 😉

  4. Mary Stephenson June 13, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Hi Josh

    Wow, this can get quite controversial. There will always be tasteless sense of humor and we will all never agree on everything. I probably have less of a sense of humor than you, but giving power to them is rather pointless. It is like the violent shows on prime TV now. I no longer watch what makes me have nightmares. There power to advertise to me is now zero, since I am not watching their shows. I have my opinion of these shows, but I am one person only and I am sure there are others but, unfortunately there are many others that enjoy these shows, so they probably won’t quit. I could go on the rampage about that most of them are violence against women, but it will probably do nothing to change the filming. So I take away their power and watch other shows.

    It is the same concept as staying away from negative people, they are not worth the frustrations that they bring. Good point though.


    • Josh June 15, 2013 at 7:41 pm

      Hi Mary,

      Yeah, it really can get controversial, especially since we are all never going to agree what is tasteless and what isn’t and that is ok.

      I think you are point about not giving some people attention is smart and salient.

  5. Daddy Files June 13, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Damn Josh, you seem like you need a hug lately.

    It’s OK to not find it funny. It’s fine to post in the comments section that you don’t find it funny (that’s what it’s there for, right?). But you getting upset at the people getting upset about your upsettedness (hey look, a new word!) is a little silly. You have the right to post, they have the right to disagree with you. So beyond your complaint that you don’t find it funny, I’m not sure what more you’re complaining about since this is free speech at work. They have a video, you leave a comment, they respond, and so on. It’s working exactly as it’s supposed to work.

    You don’t feel you have to apologize for your comments, and they don’t feel they have to apologize for not catering to your sense of humor. And yes, I do find these pretty funny. I’m of the opinion there is nothing off limits when it comes to comedy. That’s why my favorite comedians are George Carlin and Louis CK I guess.

    But I think the patriots suck so what do I know.

    • Josh June 15, 2013 at 7:36 pm

      Hi Aaron,

      I am not upset about it. We can all disagree but if you come looking for me because of a comment I made and are upset well, that is your problem. If you post something online you have to deal with the consequences. I really don’t mind the follow up email from these people, but I am not going to apologize for telling them I disagree.

      I have a twisted sense of humor and it often veers into tasteless, but this is personal because the family he murdered weren’t faceless and nameless victims. Many of them were people who easily could have been part of my life, who could have easily lived long enough for us to met.

      And I think that some tasteless humor veers into a place where people stop recognizing some of these things could happen again and that concerns me. Again, I really don’t need everyone to think like I do, but I am never going to silence everything just because.

  6. Julie Barrett June 13, 2013 at 9:08 am

    It takes a lot, but every once in a while I have to put my 2 cents in, too. If you’re going to put it out there, you have to be prepared for a response, right?

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