We seem to have forgotten that comedy can play an important role in deflecting from the stressors of life and bringing us together. There’s nothing wrong with taking a temporary break from politics, if only for a minute or two, to crack a corny dad joke. There’s a certain power in letting our guard down: We need calmness and clarity to have effective political discourse.
I became a comedy writer to entertain people, not to divide them. I try to write jokes that appeal to as wide an audience as possible. It’s discouraging to see so much discord over content that we consciously write and have control over, unlike political events. My goal is to offer hope and help people cope with everyday challenges. I’d rather find commonality among many than contribute to a toxic political environment that divides us.
There’s room for both scathing political satire and jokes about a trip to Ikea or a nightmare family gathering at the holidays. To encourage a balance doesn’t undermine the importance and urgency of political issues. It just means we can give ourselves permission to briefly opt out by pressing the “Skip Politics” button. We all might get a better night’s rest.