Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer and not ScoopWhoop.
Let me start by saying, "No. We aren't!"
I don't think we're a country for jokes, because we don't appreciate jokes, we don't respect jokes, and in fact we don't even acknowledge jokes as a form of expression.
The recent times have seen a boom in the comedy industry, both online, and at events/shows. The industry has witnessed an exponential growth. But all it takes to be called an Anti-National is one joke on the government. If you joke about a particular community, you might get death threats.
We need to understand that 'cracking a joke' isn't 'demeaning' or 'disrespectful'. A joke is a form of expression, just like any other art form, and if we're going to see a guy on stage/YouTube, we need to give him the liberty to speak what's on his or her mind, and not judge them as soon as they speak a word that we don't approve of.
But no, why do we do it, when we have a better solution?
...like a defamation case?
Or even better, death threats?
These are some of the messages that Kunal Kamra received as a feedback to his videos, and it makes me very, very sad. Do the people who're earning their bread by making people laugh, deserve the amount of hate we shower them with?
Another incident that occurred recently was, when Abijit Ganguly came out about how one of his jokes has been lifted by The Kapil Sharma Show, and he had to face a lot of hate and trolling over twitter, because Kapil Sharma fans didn't see anything wrong in lifting a joke, because it's meant to spread smiles, and it's not intellectual property. (Pfft!)
We all remember, AIB Knockout, right?
Or when Tanmay Bhat made a snapchat story about Sachin Tendulkar and Lata Mangeshkar?
I can talk about countless incidents like these, where comedians/creators received immense amount of hate or landed into legal trouble because of one joke or act that people didn't agree with.
Here's the truth. We're intolerant. Let's accept that. We don't deserve these people who keep on writing to seek our approval and make us laugh. With every hate comment, every threat, every FIR, we discourage them to continue. We give them reasons to stop writing. We disappoint them, on a daily basis.
A joke has the power to question the system, to change things. Jokes are too noble for us to handle. And, I'm sorry, but we don't deserve jokes.