After four decades on the air, Saturday Night Live producer Lorne Michaels has earned an unparalleled reputation in Hollywood. In a recent interview, he discussed various aspects of his storied career, offering surprisingly frank responses to a number of questions.
Among the most enlightening revelations was his admission that the show is easier on leftists because of their notoriously thin skin.
“Republicans are easier for us than Democrats,” he explained. “Democrats tend to take it personally; Republicans think it’s funny.”
Michaels also touched on the increased prevalence of politically correct ideology over the course of the show. He said certain segments popular in SNL’s early days, including the Weekend Update skit ‘News for the Hard of Hearing,’ would be impossible to air in today’s political climate.
“If a culture doesn’t allow you to laugh at the leaders or at things that your eyes and ears tell you are actually happening, that’s not good,” he said. “I do get into trouble every now and then, because we’re at that level where we’re being defined as if we’re a government institution.”
He transitioned into a recent manufactured scandal over the show’s perceived lack of diversity. Instead of hiring cast members who were best suited for the job, many on the left pressured Michaels to hire a black woman based entirely on physical traits. After some consideration, Michaels conducted a special audition specifically geared toward the addition of such an individual.
With four male cast members leaving the show, Michaels explained that his biggest focus was on “finding guys.” Unfortunately, too many leftists look only at skin color or gender while projecting their own behavior on those with whom they disagree.
“We’re about talent,” Michaels said of the show, explaining he wanted to hire the individuals best suited for the weekly comedy.
Michaels revealed he is a registered Independent and commented on the perceived glut of show veterans with conservative viewpoints.
“Theoretically,” he said, “whoever is in power, we’re against them.”
Though his show has always had a noticeable leftward slant, Michaels distanced himself from the blatant partisanship of other comedic hosts like Jon Stewart of “The Daily Show.”
Instead, he seems to subscribe to a sentiment expressed countless times by conservatives. Leftists, while fully capable of mercilessly disparaging their political opponents, are inherently unable to absorb any criticism they receive in return.
–B. Christopher Agee
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