Diversity Done Wrong: How ‘SNL’ Mishandled Casting A Black Woman

Source: Andrew Wallenstein / Variety

NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” is being lauded this week for casting an African-American woman for the first time in many years.

But the hiring of Sasheer Zamata leaves as much to condemn as there is to commend.

Yes, there’s insufficient diversity of all kinds on TV. Anything that remedies that shortcoming deserves kudos. The prevailing whiteness of the medium even as the United States continues to be transformed by profound demographic trends is just plain ridiculous.

But there are right ways and wrong ways to fix the situation, and Zamata’s casting amounts to blatant tokenism. Not calling out “SNL” for its sin would only encourage other shows  to follow a bad example.

To read this article in its entirety visit Variety.

  • ms nessa

    so snl is damned if they do and damned if they don’t……people complained about not seeing any color on the show (female-wise), but as soon as they do, folks still have something else to complain about, smh. I didn’t really glean what the problem was from the article (please explain).

  • Talim LESSANE

    It will all blow over in a while…they should be a lot more diverse (e.g., I don’t think I’ve EVER seen an Asian cast member that I can recall) but the fact is, the writers tend to write for white guys. Seth Myers has been head writer for about 10 years. It’s a limited sense of humor and they get cast members who fit the mold.The difference btwn the SNL of yesteryear (75-95 or so) and now is there used to be a lot more risk-taking and variance (and creativity). So this sister will just end up being one more person generally not being watched…unless she writes her own material, It’s FUNNY….and her skits get airtime.

  • Talim LESSANE

    I thought the skit that Keenen, Jay Pharaoh and Kerry Washington did (What would it take) was pretty funny…but NOBODY was re-playing it in mainstream media the next day.