If there's one thing the left most decidedly is not, it's funny.
But they sure seem to know what fits the definition of funny these days — and they definitely don't mind telling us what we're allowed to laugh about, and what we'd better not chuckle at. In fact, for some comedic utterances, they'd be happier with a frown, or better yet a boycott or a Twitter takedown. Or else.
A recent case-in-point is comedian Dave Chappelle's "Sticks and Stones" special, which TheBlaze's Lauren Chen said "received rave reviews from 95 percent of the audience, the exception being those left-wing journalists who pushed the outrage culture narrative."
One Chappelle riff they probably aren't giggling about in Planned Parenthood cafeterias? If men shouldn't tell women to not have abortions, it's only "fair" that men shouldn't have to pony up dough to take care of children, either: "My money, my choice."
Poking the 'Paper Tiger'
Now fellow comic Bill Burr is coming under scrutiny with his new special, "Paper Tiger" — and as with their reaction to Chappelle's latest work, left-wing critics are quick to judge what's politically correct about Burr's comedy, too.
And in the process, once again, they end up telling the rest of us what we're allowed to say and believe.
Take Kathryn VanArendonk's review in Vulture — which reads more like a cautionary tale of what's socially acceptable these days than comedy criticism.
Her main problem with "Paper Tiger" is the opening minutes during which Burr "flips quickly through complaints about the overanalysis of jokes, how white women are to blame for the current lamentable state of culture in the United States, and jokes about disabled characters being played by able-bodied actors."
But you can tell VanArendonk has a really big problem with Burr's next target: Michelle Obama.
Calling Burr's bit about the former first lady "his biggest and most convincingly risky swing," she says that Burr "in full character as angriest man in the world ... dares you to turn the special off in disgust." VanArendonk also characterizes the opening of Burr's special as "furious, resentful troll comedy that plays like a toddler yelling the only swear word they know, desperately begging for someone to punish them."
She also observes Burr's "sexist throat-clearing" and that at one point he uses "a stupid voice and mocks male feminists" and "makes fun of the idea that culture can be appropriated."
It's all tsk tsk tsk — until she says Burr shifts gears and more or less redeems himself.
Noting his riff about a woman touching him inappropriately before a show, VanArendonk gushes over Burr's underlying message that "sexual assault has nothing to do with sex and everything to do with power. It's so far from his opening lines about how #MeToo has robbed men of due process that it feels like the message could've come straight off an anti-Trump protest poster."
From this point she lauds Burr's "thoughtful, surprising, introspective" comedy while dropping in phrases such as "clueless white troll" and "MAGA provocateur."
Indeed VanArendonk — while explaining what's funny and not funny about Burr's comedy — appears to show us the way when it comes to what's politically correct and socially acceptable.
At least to those on the left.
Here's the "Paper Tiger" trailer. (Content warning: Language):
Bill Burr: Paper Tiger | Official Trailer | Netflix youtu.be