A broad coalition of Latino groups delivered a petition with thousands of signatures to NBC’s headquarters at 30 Rock last night, calling on them to remove Donald Trump as this host of Saturday Night Live. The Congressional Hispanic Caucus is also pissed, as is a group promising $5,000 to anyone in the SNL audience who shouts “Trump is racist” or “Deport racism.”
The protest was organized by the League of United Latin American Citizens and backed by a number Latino rights and immigration reform organizations. They said their petition drew 522,080 signatures. The Congressional Hispanic Caucus released a statement Monday night calling Trump an inappropriate choice and saying his campign “demonizing Latinos and immigrants has created fear within these communities around the country, many of which are represented in Congress by members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.”
As you might remember, NBC promised to cut ties with Trump back in July, after his “Mexicans are criminals and rapists” remarks, before happily reversing themselves in October and announcing Trump would host SNL. That prompted an immediate condemnation letter from the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, which asked, reasonably, “How can SNL justify casting zero Latinas over 41 seasons and only 2 Latinos over the same period, while promoting Trump’s divisive speech toward Latinos?”
SNL has responded to the campaign with absolute silence, and by releasing promos of Trump joking around with cast members Sasheer Zamata, Jay Pharoah and Cecily Strong (whose portrayal of a deeply stereotypical Latina character named Marisol also drew outrage last year):
Another promo in which Trump called Ben Carson “a complete and total loser” was also posted and then quickly taken down.
One anti-Trump group, Deport Racism, released an ad of Latino kids born in the U.S. joyfully calling Trump a “dick” and a “motherfucker:”
The group is promising $5,000 to anyone in the studio audience who calls Trump racist during the live broadcast, writing, “Let’s show the world that attacking brown people is not the way to win the White House.”
Fox’s Greta Van Susteren urged protest groups to “give it a rest,” asking, “We all love entertainment, but shouldn’t we should love the First Amendment even more?”
Trump previously promised that “Hispanic scam groups” protesting him would only increase his ratings.
Screengrab via NBC/Saturday Night Live