Is It Just The Brits Who Make Jokes About Disasters?

by Englishman 15 Replies latest jw friends

  • Englishman

    The tsunami jokes have started already. Perfectly nice people listen to the latest disaster joke, clap their hands over their mouths as though they were aghast with horror, then bray with laughter before filing it to memory so that they can pass the joke on to their friends.

    Many say it is the British way of coping with adversity, if you laugh at disaster it has no power over you. So we make jokes about each and every disaster as a means of expressing ourselves.

    I don't know. Do other counties also make jokes about disasters? Is it a healthy thing to do?


  • jgnat


    Canadians do it. Hey, it's our winter, and we can play if we want to.

    Hungarians do it. My honey brayed at the submarine maintenance crew at our massive Mall/Amusement complex if they had done the maintenance on the submarine we sank. The staff looked baffled, and my honey roared with laughter. My daughter disowned him on the spot. I whacked him. The sub that sank we bought from the British, by the way.

  • Xena

    I think it's a coping mechanism for some people. For others it's just poor taste.

    Probably how you view it depends on your perspective and how close you were to people involved. But we do it here too...I remember a spade of jokes making the rounds after the spaceshuttle exploded.

  • Low-Key Lysmith
    Low-Key Lysmith

    I think anything that makes you laugh is healthy. Laughing is good for you. Jokes are all about context.

  • under74

    I do it...and I'm American. Sometimes it's easier or more of a release to deal with devistation through laughter than it is to deal with it through crying...sometimes it's not always appropriate but I know when I'm going through something tough it's good to be able to laugh about it. It's a thin line though and sometimes people cross it without realizing how bad it looks to others.

  • JustTickledPink

    I think that yes, you can find humor in about anything and that includes tragedy. Is it appropriate, probably not, but what is the alternative? Sitting around just crying all day about it?

    I was in emergency services for many years, as a 911 dispatcher and also working on an ambulance and in the hospital for a bit. You'd be surprised when you are at a fatal car crash how the workers might be laughing about it the next day, or after an especially tragic 911 call where someone has been beat, there might be light banter about it. Does it make the people insensitive? Maybe, if you want to be politically correct, HOWEVER, there is no way you can immerse yourself in that job, surround yourself with tragedy and not lighten up. If you sympathize with every unconscious patient that is dying, you will crack emotionally. You don't want a Doctor that is too emotially attached to patients or else they won't make rational choices and decisions.

    I remember speaking to a lady who was being shot at by her son... he ended up killing her while she was on the phone with me. Yes, it was tragic, yes it was horrid, but if I had spent time crying about it I wouldn't have been able to take the next call. It was the one and only time someone died while I was in charge of helping them. I remember the next day talking about it and having to surpress giggles, I don't think I found it funny, but I think sometime giggles or laughter is more an outlet, like a pressure valve, something is going to bust, so you let off steam, you let off emotion, and laughter is the only accepted emotion when you have a job to do. If you cry about it, you will be sent to a councelor to "deal" with it. We are emotional but we can't allow ourselves to be overwhelmed with sadness or we will have a nervous breakdown.

  • undercover

    Nope, Americans do it too, though in the last few years PCness has taken the edge off of it some.

    I remember jokes about the shuttle disasters, hurricanes, celebrity deaths, natural disasters in third world countries, etc. I haven't heard any tsunami jokes yet, but I haven't been to the bar this week. I'm sure they're already in circulation.

  • Brummie

    I know I might sound like a prude, and I am guilty of laughing at a warped veiw of tragedy in the past, but Tsunami? I cant laugh, I cant joke about it, when I see those pictures that have constantly plauged my mind and then I look at my kids and realise it could have been them washed away had we have been geographically placed, the only thing I can come up with is anxiety, when I think of what those parents saw and those kids suffered! I hope I get to the stage that I can laugh because I am sure it is a coping stratedgy, but for now, I could still sit and cry about it. Infact, it drains me totally and I feel a knot in my chest when ever I hear word "Tsunami" or even walk past the sea front here because I still see the images.

    Perhaps this is just an emotional year for me and I'm being highly sensitive, but I find the jokes offensive, but I can understand if its needed for a coping stratedgy. I'm not attacking anyone for having a different view, I'm just stating mine.


  • Doubtfully Yours
    Doubtfully Yours

    I notice here in the States, they make jokes about disasters but only until some time has passed and problems resolved.

    I seriously think disasters are nature's way of effective population control.

    Sorry. I know it sounds terrible.


  • stillajwexelder

    Didnt a British Politician make a joke about Chinese over the Morecambe Bay cockling tragedy? So if politicians make jokes what chance is there for the rest of the british public?

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