It looks stupid but is in fact smart. It seems cruel but is secretly compassionate. Mostly, it is very, very funny. Laugh-out-loud funny. At its finest moments, cackling-in-the-basement-while-huffing-glue funny…as scurvy as the show’s gags can get, “Always Sunny” is not a nihilistic series…Binge-watch episodes, and a gonzo compassion begins to seep up through the filthy surface…the show addresses, with pride and self-loathing, its own unwillingness to be easily loved. It’s not as if dark shows can’t be popular: “Seinfeld” was a hit, after all. Yet, as impressive as “Seinfeld” was, it had no muck in it. It was icy and calculated, with its anger banked. In part, this was because of who the members of the “Seinfeld” gang were: educated Manhattanites with safety nets. In contrast, the “Always Sunny” characters are gutter punks—mostly Irish-Catholic drunks, although the twins grew up rich, with a Nazi grandfather—with no skills, intractable addictions, terrible families, and little capacity to get anywhere except the Jersey Shore, where they end up fighting over a “rum ham.” They’re not fun drunks: they’re scary, sad ones. As tightly constructed as the show’s jokes can be, the best bits of “Always Sunny” have a serrated aggression, and an air of strangeness and risk.
"This is what’s different: Now, I’m not getting any negativity. In fact, teenage boys come up to me on the street and want to get their pictures taken with me, want to give me a hug, tell me that Big Boo’s their favorite character. That means a lot to me. Because I’m winning the hearts and minds of people that are young and are going to grow up and control the world.” - Lea DeLaria
But let’s get something straight: a community pushing back against a murderous police force that is terrorizing them is not a “riot”. It’s an uprising. It’s a rebellion. It’s a community saying We can’t take this anymore. We won’t take it. It’s people who have been dehumanized to the point of rightful rage. And it happens all over the world. Uprisings and rebellions are necessary and inevitable, locally and globally. This is not to say that actual riots don’t happen. White folks riot at sporting events, for example. Riots happen. But people rising up in righteous anger and rage in the face of oppression should not be dismissed as simply a “riot”.
Don’t be distracted by terms like “rioting”. Whether you’re for or against uprising and rebellion (side-eye if you’re against it, though), it’s a tool, not the issue itself. The issue is yet another Black teenager murdered by police. His name was Mike Brown.