I base an enormous part of my identity on humor. Few things make me happier than seeing my friends laughing at one of my jokes or quirks. Several of my loved ones have suggested that I write a joke book, become a stand-up comedian, or get involved in some sort of improv. I find humor in many things, and I’m quick to laugh at myself. However, as a day-to-day entertainer, it’s important that I know what is and isn’t appropriate to joke about–because although I value humor immensely, I’d have to say that kindness and compassion are more important.
I never, ever make jokes about things like abuse, suicide, slavery, rape, and self-injury. While I believe most individuals kind of know where the line is drawn, there are still people ruthlessly making light of serious issues. It makes me sad, and it’s highly offensive to anyone who has experienced any of those horrible things.
I’m not saying that humor should be censored, really. There is endless beauty in irreverence, and even the mild misfortune of others–as in fail videos. I personally find it impossible to please everyone with meticulous political correctness (see Tumblr SJWs). Humor is a spontaneous creature who can’t thrive in a glass tube. But a basic level of human decency is required to be a kind and goodhearted comedian. Skilled humorists aim to inspire their audience, not hurt and offend them with inappropriate remarks. Great entertainers understand that some topics are reserved for serious discussions. So please, embrace your unique sense of humor, but for the love of God, know when and where to stop.