Accuracy in Media

Live from New York on Saturday Night was a bout of antisemitism from SNL.

During the show’s Weekend Update segment, co-host Michael Che joked that “Israel is reporting that they’ve vaccinated half of their population. I’m going to guess it’s the Jewish half.”

As The Times of Israel reported, this is simply not true: “Israel has offered vaccinations to all of its citizens, Jews and Arabs alike, in addition to Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem.” Two-thirds of Israel’s Arab citizens over 60 have already been vaccinated.  

In addition to spreading misinformation, SNL is also promoting antisemitism to its wide audience. 4.2 million people tuned in on Saturday night. 

Israel’s acting consul general in New York, Israel Nitzan, tweeted at SNL: “Spreading antisemitic lies & misinformation is already a problem. Fanning the flames just to get a laugh is not only wrong, it’s irresponsible. Israel has made the vaccine available for its entire population equitably, regardless of gender, race or religion.”

The American Jewish Committee started a petition demanding that NBC retract its claim and apologize. The petition states that the joke isn’t just untrue, “It’s dangerous, a modern twist on a classic antisemitic trope that has inspired the mass murder of countless Jews throughout centuries.”

NBC had no comment when Fox News reached out for a statement about the petition. Similarly, Che has yet to publicly address the matter or apologize. 

Mainstream news organizations such as CNN, NBC News, and BuzzFeed have not covered the controversy at all. These outlets were more interested in reporting on the sketch that poked fun at Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) for his ill-timed trip to Cancun during Texas’s deep freeze. 

NBC News dedicated an entire article to the skit: “‘Saturday Night Live’ roasts Ted Cruz’s trip to Cancun amid Texas climate disaster.” The article glosses over the fact that Andrew Cuomo was criticized within the same sketch for his nursing home scandal.   

How can NBC News claim to be unbiased when it promulgates misinformation and antisemitism on its own network?  

 




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