The Off Button Is So Much Simpler

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The great thing about life in Canada is that we have the ability to choose.  Choices we make are covered by the Constitution as one of the fundamental rights and freedoms that we, as Canadians, have.  Blood was shed in world wars for our rights to have freedom of expression, freedom of association and freedom of religion, to name a few.

We used to be harmonious.  Growing up, we didn’t comment a lot publically about the things we did not like, because we chose to ignore, or turn the switch to off and pay it no mind.  When I was growing up, there weren’t a lot of things we considered offensive.  They may have been outrageous, controversial and in bad taste, but we all had the option to say no, or turn the switch to off.

I am not sure how it started, but some time ago, people around my age started taking offence on behalf of others, and rather loudly.  They made a big spectacle trying to trumpet the causes for those who are of a different race, gender or ethnicity.

Andrew Dice Clay and Howard Stern were two of the biggest entertainment figures in the 80s and early 90s that rose to superstardom.  Both were crude and offensive, but we didn’t see them in that light.  Our radios had multiple stations, and the television sets had an off button.  We changed the channel or station, or we listened or watched.  It was our choice.

Nowadays you have women dressing and looking like guys, and vice versa.  Gun violence is everywhere in America, the abortion debate is stronger than ever before with one side in particular using fear, rhetoric and delivering their message louder than people would talk in a bar.  Even the world of comedy cannot escape this new reality.

Being a clean comedian doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you won’t be offensive.  It simply means that people of a certain political slant will listen more intently to see if there is something you say that they will take offence on behalf of somebody else for.  These types of people are all over the place now, a walking offence just waiting to stand on their soapbox and shout to the rafters to anybody who will listen.  Unfortunately, instead of tuning these people out, they listen and join in the rhetoric and misinformation.

Todays generation are ill equipped to deal with the pressures of life.  If you don’t believe me, just take a look at the biographies of many famous people.  Before they made it big, when they hit hard times, they didn’t change their gender, didn’t commit crimes, didn’t even spread rhetoric or hate.  Instead, they simply did what normal people do.  They turned to their church, leaned on family and friends or simply forged it alone and saw their struggles through to the end.  Nowadays, because of the pressure of the world, due in part to social media and the panic of millenials, it’s as if nobody knows how to deal with life when things get hard.  They turn to violence, drugs, alcohol or self-harm.

The interesting part about the people I described above have one glaring omission from their lives, and that’s a lack of God.  Have you ever sat down with one of these people and ask them about church?  They get loud and defensive and come up with a million excuses to justify where they are.  It’s as if they are afraid to try, because if God did help them, their friends and family would disown them.  Instead, they are simply enablers to a three ring circus that has no intention of stopping.  It seems like people today want to take the easy way out to solve their problems, through drugs, alcohol or violence and blame it on everything around them.  Although I have to admit that actually makes sense, because going to church and letting God be a part of the solution takes humility, sacrifice, commitment and hard work.

Offending people even when you are a clean comedian is a pretty sad state of affairs, isn’t it?  The good thing about a clean comic is that the majority of people will side with you and support you, because the majority of people enjoy clean humour, plus it takes having an actual work ethic to create clean material.

The majority of people that support you as a comedian with your clean material don’t have to shout down their opposition.  They also don’t engage in rhetoric or threats.  They just stand on solid ground and know what is right and what is wrong.  Those are the best kind of people to have in your corner.  The two or three people that get offended get drown out and swept out to sea, left to drown in their own self pity and anxiety.

It’s sad the way the world is leaning these days, and hopefully it is cyclical and will eventually subside and see common sense and morals prevail once again.  In the end, clean comedy and morals and values will always triumph.  Now, if it doesn’t seem that way to you, then you aren’t surrounding yourself with the right people.  If you don’t want to surround yourself with the right people; well, thay says a lot about who you are, and about who you aren’t.

Remember, the off button doesn’t come with a microphone, just an off button.

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