Controversial and widely divisive gaming personality Phillip “Darksydephil” Burnell, perhaps better known by the abbreviation DSP, recently tried to explain his stance on the subjectivity of pointed jokes after he received a question from a donating viewer. The viewer sent Phil $1 along with a question that challenged the streamer on their alleged hypocrisy over the fact that they believe people are overly “sensitive” about racist jokes, yet he finds it upsetting when people poke fun at his gout.
Firstly: Gout is a form of arthritis that’s said to cause swelling, stiffness, and pain in the sufferer’s joints. While it’s understandable that DSP wouldn’t appreciate being made fun of for suffering from an unpleasant medical condition, many on Reddit have criticized his somewhat rambling justification for why that brand of potentially offensive comedy isn’t all right, but by comparison, casual racism is.
Burnell states that generalized racist jokes are just “silly” and as a result are “okay.” He gives an example by saying that making fun of Chinese people isn’t “meant necessarily to be malicious, it’s meant more to be like observational comedy.” He goes on to claim, however, that jokes based on observations about his medical condition are “f***ed up” due to being directed at him specifically.
He acknowledges that a sense of humor is a “subjective thing,” though goes on to opine that the difference here is that his gout is “hereditary” and as such he “can’t help that [he] has it.” The main issue with that train of thought is that it’s actually a direct similarity between the two cases, as sarcastically pointed out by u/ArabianAftershock who wrote: “Gout is apparently more hereditary than your race???”
Others have taken issue with the tacit assertion that race doesn’t cause people pain and suffering, noting that placing them as the subject of racist jokes is just one (arguably minor, looking at the history of racial persecution) example of just that. Whatever your stance on the eligibility and morality of dark humor, it’s clear that people don’t believe DSP made a relevant case in this instance.