In his own words, Ricky Gervais makes himself the butt of his jokes. He’s the silly white man who gets things wrong. But he wasn’t the first to practice self-deprecating comedy. Stars like John Cleese (Fawlty Towers) or Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean) preceded him. Being able to laugh at oneself is certainly a confidence-boosting trait—until it becomes anti-white racism. Has comedy that makes white men look stupid gone too far?