Dave Chappelle in SNL monologue delivers biting commentary on Trump, COVID and race
The legendary comedian's appearance on Saturday Night Live comes four years after his post-2016 election performance
Four years ago, comedian Dave Chappelle was the first guest on NBC’s Saturday Night Live after the 2016 election.
It was fate that the three-time Grammy winner hosted Saturday’s episode, the first show after the 2020 election.
While the electricity of the evening was high following news of Joe Biden’s win, Chappelle’s opening monologue still contained much biting commentary on race relations and a health crisis that are plaguing the country. He made fun of the irony of how the pandemic has stopped mass shootings in America.
“You guys remember what life was like before COVID?” Chappelle said. “I do. A mass shooting every week. Anyone remember that? Thank God for COVID. Someone had to lock these murderous whites up, keep them in the house.”
He also comically condemned white people who refuse to wear masks during the pandemic. There are several documented cases of white Americans refusing to wear protective masks inside airplanes and stores.
“I don’t know why poor white people don’t like wearing masks. What is the problem,” Chappelle said. “You wear masks to the Klan rally, wear it to Walmart too!”
He continued by commenting on how Black Americans, who have dealt with centuries-long atrocities in the U.S., are well equipped to deal with today’s turmoil. White citizens, by contrast, are reacting to being in unfamiliar territory, he suggested.
“You don’t even want to wear your mask because it’s oppressive? Try wearing the mask I’ve been wearing all these years!” Chappelle said. “I can’t even tell something true unless it has a punchline behind it. You guys aren’t ready.”
Chappelle even turned his attention to Trump, who is the loudest opponent of masks, and his bout with the coronavirus after months of haranguing against the pandemic. Trump was hospitalized for days before returning to the campaign trail and speaking before large audiences.
Chappelle quipped that after Trump received high-priority treatment, the president returned to the White House, took off his mask “and killed four more people.” He joked about the hypocrisy and tone-deafness of Trump telling the public not to worry about COVID while receiving care for it.
“It would be like me going to a homeless shelter with a bag full of hamburgers, and saying ‘These is mines!’ And just started eating in front of the homeless.”
While proceeding to mime eating the burgers, he jokingly said: “Don’t let hunger dictate your life.”
Chappelle also took aim at Trump in 2016 after he was declared the winner of the presidential election that year. In his monologue, the legendary comedian took the temperature of a country in shock saying: “we elected an internet troll as our president.”
During his monologue he took the temperature of a country in shock, saying of then President-elect Donald Trump, “we elected an internet troll as our president.” It was fate that the three-time Grammy winner was the host for the first episode after the 2020 election.
Have you subscribed to theGrio’s podcast “Dear Culture”? Download our newest episodes now!
TheGrio is now on Apple TV, Amazon Fire, and Roku. Download theGrio today!