Activists Call On Sitcom Producers To Reckon With Genre’s Ugly History Of Sarcasm

Illustration for article titled Activists Call On Sitcom Producers To Reckon With Genre’s Ugly History Of Sarcasm

LOS ANGELES—Demanding accountability from the entertainment industry for its role in promoting the outdated trope, activists issued a petition Tuesday calling on sitcom producers to reckon with the genre’s troubling history of sarcastic attitudes. “From Carla on Cheers to April on Parks And Recreation, these demeaning portrayals have gone unaddressed for too long, and it is time Hollywood reckoned with its dark legacy of sarcasm,” the petition read in part before going on to criticize sitcom showrunners who defend their work by arguing their use of sarcastic language is only meant as a joke. “With their casual mockery, these characters who roll their eyes and irreverently quip, ‘Whatever!’ or, ‘Yeah, right,’ perpetuate demeaning stereotypes. It needs to stop now before any more children get desensitized to sarcasm or, in the most disturbing cases, form their whole personality around it. They see actors doing it on TV and think it’s okay to be sarcastic in real life.” The petition ends with a call for casting directors to boycott Neil Patrick Harris for his careless and continual use of sarcasm throughout his career.