Pressure continues to mount on NBC as Saturday Night Live prepares to provide a platform for Donald Trump’s hateful attacks on Latinos and immigrants.
Last week, America’s Voice wrote extensively about how Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric has real life consequences – and added that reputable programs like Saturday Night Live should abstain from further mainstreaming the Trump Effect.
I launched a petition via MoveOn.org asking NBC’s Matt Bond, Chairman of Content Distribution for NBC Universal, and Lorne Michaels, producer and creator of Saturday Night Live, to revoke Donald Trump’s invitation to host the popular program because I do not find humor in Trump’s mass deportation plan or the way his supporters harass Latinos.
With over 125,000 signatures as of this morning, the outcry regarding Trump’s role as host continues to grow louder by the hour. And it is not just loyal viewers of Saturday Night Live who are asking NBC to remove Trump from SNL, as comedians and national organizations have also voiced their opposition to Trump’s appearance in the program.
Here is a snapshot of what some comedians have said about Trump’s role within Saturday Night Live:
— Margaret Cho (@margaretcho) October 16, 2015
— John Leguizamo (@JohnLeguizamo) October 17, 2015
— Al Madrigal (@almadrigal) October 18, 2015
— Eugenio Derbez (@EugenioDerbez) October 19, 2015
Already, National Council of La Raza has called Trump’s involvement in Saturday Night Live “a slap in the face“ to Latino audiences, while the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda has issued a letter to NBC CEO Stephen Burke and Saturday Night Live’s executive producer Lorne Michaels stating that Trump’s invitation is nothing more than “ratings ploy.”
Back in June, NBC used strong language when it ended its relationship with Trump over his insulting remarks about Mexican immigrants:
At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values.
Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBCUniversal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump.
In response, Trump called NBC “weak” and “foolish.” Now, NBC is disregarding its earlier position, a move demonstrates NBC’s willingness to cave to the #TrumpEffect in order to boost its programming and ratings.
There is an opportunity for Latinos, immigrants, and those who oppose giving a free pass to Donald Trump’s blatant racism, to united and demand change from NBC and Saturday Night Live.
Lorne Michaels, Matt Bond, and the rest of NBC should not be shrugging off the demands from its viewers to cancel Trump’s appearance on SNL, and instead understand that hate and racism should not be passed as comedy.
While the response to Trump’s anti-immigrant remarks may have united celebrities, communities, and individuals across the country in an effort to stand up to hate, there is more work to be to done.
This is not the time to stand on the sidelines. Comedians who choose to not comment on this situation, specifically Latino comedians like George Lopez, need to recognize their role in this very important discussion about the intersection of speech and comedy, and speak out on it!
It is time that we remain united, continue to raise voices, and demand that Donald Trump’s hatred and intolerance is not passed as humor.