Created By: acrobox on January 31, 2013 Last Edited By: acrobox on April 12, 2015

Less Power, More Venting

\'Abuse\' is okay when a with less social power does it to a person of privilege

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The underlying source of Double Standards that make some jokes okay, and some jokes that, are essentially the same, as bigotry and a Berserk Button to the people targeted.

This is why its okay for kids to hurt adults in slapstick humor but not the other way around. And why minorities can complain about the White Establishment but when reversed it reads as racism. Why a poor man can complain about the rich, but when the rich complain about the poor its insensitive. And why Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male exists.

Typically whoever holds the more power in general societal class terms can't make fun of someone with lesser social standing because it becomes abuse of power. This applies to age, sex, race, and even religion in some cases.
Community Feedback Replies: 5
  • June 1, 2014

    Could be a supertrope to Double Standard Abuse Female On Male.
  • July 22, 2014
    Bumping again. Thinking of this as either and exampleless index or Useful Notes, or maybe a place for general examples that don't have their own subtrope yet
  • July 22, 2014
  • April 12, 2015
  • April 12, 2015
    ^^ Agreed.

    ^ Not to all. Only to those tropes where the Double Standard works against the more privileged party. E.g. there are many Double Standard tropes which favor men compared to women.

    I'm not sure about the "why minorities can complain about the White Establishment" part. It's confusing whether they complain about the establishment (which is a people vs society type of thing), or about white people. I'd suggest maybe changing it to racial jokes (like White Dude Black Dude), or something like that.

    Also note that it's not necessarily about Bob himself holding more power than Alice. It's about Bob belonging to a group that in general has more privilege than the group Alice belongs to; and the narrative being framed that way that it's focused on this specific difference. E.g. Bob is a poor man, Alice is a rich woman. The narrative can focus on the gender difference (thus casting Bob as the "acceptable target"), or on the class difference (thus casting Alice as the "acceptable target").

    And I'd suggest a name change.