And Gendered Politics

1770 WordsDec 14, 20168 Pages
SNL and Gendered Politics “Here you have this serious presidential campaign, and all of us had to go on these comedy shows like Saturday Night Live, because that was the only way we could have more than a soundbite and reach a large audience, ” Ralph Nader said in an interview regarding his 2000 bid for president. A 2004 study done by Pew research found that 20% of Americans between the ages of 18 to 24 regularly get their news from late night television shows, like Saturday Night Live. With satirical outlets as a legitimate and consistent source of information, their representation of politicians becomes a crucial part of how that politician is perceived by the general electorate. Political satire is certainly not a new concept, but its emergence as a viable news source has come as a result of our polarized political climate, and intertwinement of news with the entertainment industry. According to a poll conducted by Gallup in September of 2016, only 32% of Americans had a”great deal,” or “fair amount,” of trust that mass media would report news “fully, accurately, and fairly,” an all time low. Traditional media outlets are disliked and distrusted, and satirical presentations like Saturday Night Live (SNL) have never been more popular, especially amongst young voters. “For Americans under 30, these shows are now mentioned almost as frequently as newspapers and evening network news shows as regular sources for election news.” (Pew, 2004) Political satire is a vehicle
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