” Comedy makes fun of people—that is its nature.
Thus the people who condemn South Park today for being offensive need to be reminded that comedy is by its very nature offensive.It derives its energy from its transgressive power, its ability to break taboos, to speak the unspeakable. Comedians are always pushing the envelope, probing to see how much they can get away with in violating the speech codes of their day. Comedy is a social safety valve. We laugh precisely because comedians momentarily liberate us from the restrictions that conventional society imposes on us. We applaud comedians because they say right out in front of an audience what, supposedly, nobody is allowed to say in public. Paradoxically, then, the more permissive American society has become, the harder it has become to write comedy. As censorship laws have been relaxed and people have been allowed to say and show almost anything in movies and television—above all, to deal with formerly taboo sexual material—comedy writers, such as the creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, must have begun to wonder if there is any way left to offend audiences.
The genius of Parker and Stone was to see that in our day a new frontier of comic transgression has opened up because of the phenomenon known as political correctness.”