Samantha Bee Responds To Michelle Wolf’s WHCD & Explains How To Tell A "Non-Offensive" Joke
Michelle Wolf's comedy set at the White House Correspondents' Dinner drew outrage from Washington conservatives and some in the media, too. But her fellow comedians have largely stood by her in response to the large amount of criticism on Twitter and cable news. Samantha Bee's response to Wolf's WHCD set exactly what she thinks about everyone who is outraged by the comedian's jokes.
Bee took to Twitter to give advice to Wolf. "See @michelleisawolf, this is how you tell a non-offensive joke that everyone likes," Bee wrote from the Full Frontal Twitter account.
Attached as a photo were headlines from several articles detailing so-called "jokes" that President Trump has said, both during the presidential campaign and since taking office.
The first, from August 2016, reads, "Trump Wonders If Gun Owners Could Stop Hillary Clinton." The sub headline continues, "During a rally in Wilmington, North Carolina, on Tuesday, the Republican nominee made an apparent joke about the assassination of his rival." Bee highlighted "an apparent joke."
The other two came after he was sworn in as president. "Spicer: Trump was 'joking' when he asked Russia to hack Clinton," read one from June 2017. The other, from February, is titled, "Trump was 'joking' when he accused Democrats of treason, White House says."
All of the times Trump "joked" about things like murder, treason, or hacking a presidential election were not during a standup comedy routine. The first joke about gunning down Clinton was given at a campaign rally. The treason "joke" was part of a serious speech at a manufacturing plant. The "joke" about the hacking was acknowledged as a joke a year after he said it.
And even though these "jokes" were public at the time, none of them were met with the outrage that was expressed over Wolf's comedic set. And Trump either was president of the United States or was running to be president when he said them, as Bee pointed out.
Others made similar observations to Bee's. Ana Navarro, the CNN commentator, wrote, "We’re supposed to take a comedian seriously, and attacks from POTUS as jokes." She further explored the situation, writing "@Michelle Wolf did what nobody else has been able to do: get Trump supporters to stand up against offensive attacks on women. What about @Rosie, @morningmika, @CarlyFiorina, @megynkelly, Heidi Cruz...?"
Seth Meyers also pointed out the difference between Wolf and Trump on Late Night. He said:
Now, Michelle Wolf doesn’t need anyone to defend her. But she is our friend. So just know, when you call her filthy, you are right. She is filthy. And she is mean, which is what we love about her. Because those are wonderful qualities for comedians and terrible qualities for free world leaders.
On The Late Show, Stephen Colbert explored another aspect of the charges against Wolf — particularly the response from journalists who were at a dinner celebrating the First Amendment.
"This is the Correspondents’ Dinner celebrating the freedom of speech, you can’t just say whatever you want!" Colbert joked. "You don’t go to a funeral and say exactly what you thought of the person, and what is the annual Correspondents’ Dinner but a funeral for the independent press?”
As for the comedian, Wolf doesn't regret what she said. "I mean, I’m honestly — I wouldn’t change a single word that I said," Wolf told NPR in an interview that will air on Tuesday. "I’m very happy with what I said, and I’m glad I stuck to my guns.”
Wolf wasn't shy about defending herself, but now she's being joined by some of her most talented colleagues.