By Christopher Canadeo
Last week’s episode of “Saturday Night Live” touched upon an array of topics ranging from gun control in response to the Las Vegas shooting, a tribute to the late great Tom Petty and several wacky skits thrown in for good measure. “SNL” is celebrating its 43rd season and is no stranger to writing spoofs on current events topics and spinning them into satirical messages—that’s what’s been the driving force of their show since season one.
However, when one of the biggest stories of the year, the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment scandal, hit the news, “SNL” decided to completely ignore the matter and not mention Weinstein in any part of the show.
Surprising? No. Extremely hypocritical? Yes.
When asked about why Weinstein was left off the list, “SNL” creator Lorne Michaels responded, “because he’s from New York.” News Flash: Donald Trump is also from New York; I wonder if he’s been on the show before.
Ignoring Harvey Weinstein and just how awful and ongoing the scandal is only makes “SNL” look bad in its futile attempt to shield Weinstein from justified mockery. As if we did not know already, the luxurious Hollywood is a dirty, ugly place and this is just another example of leftist actors blindly supporting and defending criminal acts done by famous figures who funded (or even led) the Democratic party. Furthermore, leaving Weinstein off the list of names deserving to be called out only shows how untouchable Weinstein is by Hollywood, even after the surfacing of this scandal. Obviously, “SNL” has its own agenda and has the right to joke about who they feel like joking about, but protecting Weinstein by completely ignoring his situation just further highlights the hypocrisy of Hollywood and how one sided it is when it comes to supporting or scrutinizing famous figures.
After all, the scandal itself only lasted for so long because those in Hollywood actively sought to cover up the blemishes of the situation in order to keep the Weinstein name clean for as long as possible. That is how one person can sexually harass or violate 13 actresses and employees over the span of two decades (according to The New York Post). This was no one-time stint, this was no Lewinski, this was a working, well-known system in place that was just recently uncovered after years of operating behind closed doors. This dirty secret is now a secret no more, and while other media sources are unraveling this story, “SNL” is busy hiding itself behind more Trump satire and oval office impersonations.
Even John Oliver, host of “Last Week Tonight,” a show known for bashing Trump as much as any other, felt it was only fair to dedicate a few minutes of the show to expose just how awful the Harvey Weinstein situation was and how terribly he treated those actresses. Weinstein was even fired from his own company, The Weinstein Company, but “SNL” doesn’t feel the need to comment? Weinstein’s own wife also plans on leaving him, according to The New York Post, yet his relationship with “SNL” has not missed a beat.
It is also worth noting that “SNL” chose to ignore this issue not because sexual harassment is an issue too sensitive for them to focus on. The “Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary Special” featured actor Keenan Thompson playing the role of Bill Cosby, discussing his favorite cocktails on “Celebrity Jeopardy.”
The only real solution to this is to stop watching “Saturday Night Live” until they finally talk about scandals by figures on both sides of the political spectrum.
Regardless of who you voted for in the last election, if you are against sexual harassment, you have to be upset with the deliberate ignorance of “SNL” towards this major issue and should not watch their show in the foreseeable future.
If we continue to watch “SNL,” we are the real losers in this situation and the actresses who were wronged by Harvey Weinstein will not find justice.
Not punishing “SNL” through poor viewership in the upcoming weeks is almost as bad as supporting the show and its defense of sexist Harvey Weinstein.
Christopher Canadeo, GSB ’19, is a marketing major from Long Island, New York.