SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE is known for its funny skits, musical guests, and controversial approach to humor.
However, a sketch written by SNL cast member Michael Che that aired on Saturday, May 8, received backlash.
What SNL skit is being accused of cultural appropriation?
The skit Gen Z Hospital has been accused of cultural appropriation.
The skit, written by Che, starred Kate McKinnon, Mikey Day, Heidi Gardner, Ego Nwodim, Bowen Yang, and SNL host Elon Musk.
In the skit, the cast used words and phrases including bestie, no cap, go off, king, sis, gang gang, and it's the…. for me.
While the skit was meant to joke about the slang used in Gen. Z, many of those phrases are used in African American Vernacular English (AAVE). Many viewers believe that the use of those phrases is considered cultural appropriation.
One person tweeted "the appropriation of AAVE by white people is gross, the mislabeling of AAVE as a 'Gen Z phenomenon' is also gross, but on top of that, the SNL skit reads like they just pulled a list of terms from UrbanDictionary and sprinkled them in, not caring that AAVE has a defined grammar!"
"Love the relabelling of AAVE and a few assorted BLACK LGBTQ+ phrases as 'Gen Z speak," another wrote.
What was Michael Che's response to the SNL sketch accused of cultural appropriation?
The 37-year-old SNL writer came forward and released a statement following the backlash of the skit.
"I've been reading about how my 'gen z's sketch was misappropriating AAVE," Che said. "And I was stunned because what the f–k is 'AAVE'? I had to look it up. Turns out it's an acronym for 'African American Vernacular English.' You know, AAVE! That ol' saying that actual Black people use in conversation all the time…"
Che continued, "I meant no offense to the 'AAVE' community. I love AAVE. AAVE to the moon."
It appears the post has since been deleted.
What is AAVE?
AAVE stands for African-American Vernacular English, otherwise known as Black English.
Dating back to the 17th and 18th centuries, the AAVE language was established during the first century of the British colonization of America.
The language shares many features with Southern American English, it began by mixing West African languages with English to create a new means of communication.
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