Humor often is used as an escape from the seriousness of real issues we face in the world today. At their best, successful jokes can ease the pain from hardship or tragedy. At their worst, well, we all saw what happened when Kathy Griffin made the decision to tweet a photo of herself holding Donald Trump’s bloody, severed head.
I am arguably one of the most lenient individuals in the world when it comes to whether a joke is appropriate or not. I am not here to tell people what they can or can’t joke about. Griffin’s attempt to make people laugh is different for a number of reasons.
First off, in order for something to be considered a joke, it has to be funny on some level. Or, at the very least, has potential to be funny. What is remotely humorous about our president’s head being severed?
I may be going out on a limb here, but if your head is severed from your body, you are probably going to die. I think. I will get back to everyone on that.
Regardless of how you feel about Trump, do you actually want him to die because you disagree with him on different issues?
There is a vast distinction between making a joke in real time, i.e. live-tweeting your reaction to a real-world event, responding to a reporter at a press conference, etc. versus what Kathy Griffin did.
Griffin conceivably planned the whole thing out. One day, she decided she was going to make this attempt at humor, then organized the photo shoot, reviewed all the photos and still thought, you know what, a picture of our president’s bloody and severed head would truly be captivating and awesome.
This was not an instance where she said something she didn't mean in a heated moment, or got her words tangled up. She had ample time to make the decision whether or not the tweet should be published.
Next, instead of putting out the fire, she poured gasoline on it.
Griffin, the same woman who publicly fantasized about murdering our president, held a press conference to announce that she is actually the victim in this situation.
“A sitting president of the United States and his grown children and the first lady are personally, I feel, trying to ruin my life forever,” Griffin said in the press conference.
She continued by saying she was being bullied, and that she believes her career is now over.
Don’t you just hate when people say you are being disrespectful for posing with an ISIS-like photograph of the president’s severed head?
I am going to be honest, I am at a loss for words on what to say. Is she actually being serious? The victim card has gotten really old.
In no way, shape or form is Griffin the victim here. She brought all of this hate upon herself. Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from the repercussions that may stem from comments of poor taste.
In the press conference, Griffin stated she would never hurt a child. This is contradictory to what she said in an interview with Vulture magazine in 2016.
“I’m happy to deliver beat down to Donald Trump — and also to Barron,” Griffin said in the interview with Vulture. “You know a lot of comics are going to go hard for Donald, my edge is that I’ll go direct for Barron. I’m going to get in ahead of the game.”
Her edge is to go after an 11-year-old boy? I am casting my ballot now, Kathy Griffin is heading to my Comedic Hall of Fame.
But, hey guys, maybe this was another one of her hilarious jokes.
Whether you're Trump’s biggest critic or his biggest supporter, I think we all realized something. Trump is still a human being. He has a family. He is the father to an 11-year-old boy.
Kathy Griffin absolutely deserved the backlash she received for this. She is no victim.
Jared Lenz is a junior from Andover studying journalism and finance.