. . . Indeed, anyone who's spent any time at all around soldiers (and I imagine doctors & nurses too) can probably attest that nothing is sacrosanct or "too serious to joke about."
Doctors in particular are well-known for their morbid sense of humor
Gov Kodos wrote:
Like Blazing Saddles and the N word, it's about context. One way can be funny, another irredeemably offensive.
It's also about time and distance. For example, hardly anyone today would object to "hole in the head" jokes about John F. Kennedy -- and certainly not about Abraham Lincoln.
OTOH, jokes about recent tragedies can be funny precisely because of the social taboo factor. I'm sure a lot of us remember the jokes about the Ethiopian famine, the space shuttle Challenger
explosion, Princess Diana's death, etc.
Guy Gardener wrote:
. . . A woman in a desperate panic rings the police station and screams down the phone line: "HELP ME! HELP ME! I'm being REAPED!!!!" ...The policeman answering the call replies "I'm sorry ma'am, but don't you mean "raped"?" "Oh no" She says, "He's using a Scythe."
See, now I don't find that funny at all. Not because it's offensive, but because it's DUMB.