Andrew Klavan has a way with words:
I’m very fond of the human race. Too fond of them, I sometimes think. And when you see how small we are, how brief our lives are, what gifts of creation these fingersnaps of consciousness are in God’s great scheme… and then you see what we do to one another: the holocausts and the little cruelties, the elaborate lies and self-deceptions… gassing a child to death because his name ends in itz instead of er, betraying and abusing the spouses who love us, hurting our own kids, all the ways we spend our little moment when we could be loving each other and making funny faces…. well, it’s absurd, isn’t it? And the absurdity either makes your heart explode with pity, or you have to laugh. Or both. For me, it’s both.
I used to ask my father why he would laugh at inappropriate moments. His response (actually my mother’s explanation but he didn’t disagree) was that he had to laugh or cry–he had to do one or the other. And, since he came from the generation where men didn’t really have liberty to cry, laughing was how he handled it.