"Howl" is in honor of all of Ginsberg's fallen comrades. He's listing everything, good and bad, that made them great. Whether it was being caught for sneaking drugs, being high and wild under the influence, having sex with "saintly motorcyclists", writing poetry that ends up being only "stanzas of gibberish", growing older and not evading time, Ginsberg is glorifying his friends in their youth, he's immortalizing them in his poetry, and he's honoring them, who fell victim to vices supplied by a rotten generation. Ginsberg even honors his mother, albeit privately, "with mother finally*******". He does all of this, and it's funny!
Ginsberg writes in "Howl" about his generation, as if the regular rules don't apply. In remembering his friends, he chooses to depict them as honestly as possible and yet, mythologizes them. The rules don't apply, because they made up their own rules--Ginsberg is making his own elegy for them. Who says it can't be funny. Perhaps it is so, because it is so definitely heartbreaking as well. Their highest reward is a promise that "their heads shall be crowned with laurel in oblivion".
I'm saying that "Howl" is Ginsberg's eulogy to his generation. His voice seems like it would support this notion, but it's not completely elevated. His tone changes throughout the poem, fluctuating sorrow with defiance, with boasts and regrets, always respectful. He is "putting down here what might be left to say in time come after death". Bad ass eulogy!