Trevor Noah Accused Of Anti-Semitism & Sexism On Twitter, But Will This Hurt Him In The Long Run? — UPDATE
It looks like Trevor Noah is in some hot water. The South African comedian, who was just announced as Jon Stewart's replacement on The Daily Show, is facing some criticism for a few old jokes he made on Twitter. Specifically, Trevor Noah is being accused of anti-Semitism and sexism in said jokes by other Twitter users.
(Update March 31, 3:49 p.m.: Comedy Central released the following statement to The Wrap in regards to Trevor Noah: "Like many comedians, Trevor Noah pushes boundaries; he is provocative and spares no one, himself included. To judge him or his comedy based on a handful of jokes is unfair. Trevor is a talented comedian with a bright future at Comedy Central.”
(Update March 31, 6:10 p.m.: Trevor Noah tweeted in response to the controversy, "To reduce my views to a handful of jokes that didn’t land is not a true reflection of my character, nor my evolution as a comedian.)
Some of Noah's past tweets include jokes such as, "Behind every successful Rap Billionaire is a double as rich Jewish man. #BeatsByDreidel" and commentary while watching a soccer match, "Messi gets the ball and the real players try to foul him, but Messi doesn't go down easy, just like Jewish chicks. #ElClasico." Now, it is definitely worth mentioning that, according to the Daily Mail, Noah is a quarter Jewish, so it is not as if he is not part of that cultural group. As the son of a half-Jewish Xhosa mother and a Swiss father, Noah is speaking from the perspective of a multicultural man with intersectional identities. Noah has not replied to these claims on Twitter and has not yet responded to Bustle's request for comment.
That being said, his old tweets have also made jokes at women's expense, such as, "A hot white woman with ass is like a unicorn. Even if you do see one, you'll probably never get to ride it." The jokes, some dating back to 2009, have drawn criticism from both The Daily Show fans and people as well known as Roseanne Barr. It is hard to say if the jokes will give Noah a rocky start at this point. But, if anything, this backlash should serve as a reminder to be careful what you post online. As evidenced by this, it is far more easily accessible than you think it is.
So will this affect Noah's image in the long run? Well, the thing is, Noah is a comedian. Good comedy often includes pushing boundaries and yes, stepping on some toes in the meantime. And he has also received a blessing from none other than Jon Stewart himself (which is likely no easy feat). So only time will tell if the controversial tweets will help or hurt his entrance into The Daily Show host's shoes — pretty big shoes to fill.
But if you take one thing away from this, it is that if you post something that could be seen as controversial, be sure that you're OK with thousands of people reading it. Because who knows? They might.
Images: Trevor Noah/Instagram; Getty Images