Saturday night’s (April 30) White House Correspondent’s Association Dinner has everybody talking the day after, but the discussions are far from positive.
As you may or may not have heard, Comedy Central’s Larry Wilmore, host of The Nightly Show, ended the speech by calling President Barack Obama the N-word. Really. This is how he ended his speech, which itself has received mixed reviews.
“Mr. President, I’m going to keep it a hundred. Yo’ Barry, you did it, my n****!”
While President Obama seemed to take Larry Wilmore’s N-word use in stride, laughing and tapping his chest before shaking Wilmore’s hand, at least one of those in attendance had a problem with Wilmore’s use of the N-word. Among the detractors is none other than civil rights activist and MSNBC weekend host Rev. Al Sharpton.
In a story in the Los Angeles Times, Sharpton said he found the use of the word to the nation’s first African-American president to be in “bad taste.”
“‘Many of us are against using the N-word period,’ Sharpton said at MSNBC‘s after party that followed the event at the Washington Hilton. ‘But to say that to the President of the United States in front of the top people in media was at best in poor taste.'”
While Sharpton had come out against Larry Wilmore’s use of the N-word at Saturday’s White House Correspondent’s Association Dinner, he saved perhaps his sharpest criticism for his MSNBC show, which aired Sunday (May 1), not quite 12 hours after the incident in question. The Daily Caller quotes Sharpton as saying, “I was offended by Larry Wilmore just referring to him with the N-word, I’ve got to say that again.”
“I just thought that was so inappropriate, that the stature the president has, and I wouldn’t use the N-word anyway, I just thought that was a bit much,” he added.
Wilmore was not only criticized for his use of the N-word to President Obama, but also for the rest of his material the entire evening. The comedian, whose show focuses on race in media and society, took a several shots at those in attendance, though he refrained from using any other racially-charged words.
One instance in particular was picked up on camera, with Wilmore naming several journalists in attendance before shifting to calling CNN‘s Don Lemon an “alleged journalist.” Wilmore’s sharp jab at Lemon was greeted with a middle finger by the CNN host, Mediaite reported. But, the media news site says it appears both hosts made up after the dinner concluded and they met at an after party, with Wilmore and Lemon posing for a photo with Lemon clearly flipping the bird again.
President Obama kept it one hundred, though he did not use any charged language like Wilmore during his standup routine. The Inquisitr reports on the president’s remarks before he literally said “Obama out” and dropped the mic on his last White House Correspondent’s Association Dinner.
“President Obama also leveled some jokes at Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton at the famous dinner. Mr. Obama praised Sanders’ ‘Feel the Bern’ slogan that fired up younger people, but joked about trudging up the hill with ‘Aunt Hillary,’ likening Clinton to a relative who just joined Facebook. Sending a Facebook poke to America and trying to figure out if things were showing up on the wall were the antics President Obama ascribed to Hillary’s campaign.”
Give us your feedback in the comments section below. Was Larry Wilmore’s use of the N-word in bad taste? And was his speech funny? Did President Obama bring the laughs with his last speech at the Nerd prom?
[Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images]