The rapier (no pun intended) wits at Saturday Night Live have finally taken note of the spate of prominent sexual harassment and assault accusations and firings in their own special way. In a lavish video production they call ‘Welcome to Hell’, they make the case that women are little more than targets for the predatory patriarchy…and have been, well, since forever.
After initially contorting themselves into various pretzel-like shapes in order to justify their silence on one of the biggest news stories of the year, it appears NBC’s too-long-in-the-tooth franchise finally felt they could no longer avoid the topic.
But even here, SNL’s “comics” managed to only obliquely allude to the last few months’ revelations without mentioning a single name amongst the score or so of prominent entertainment, media and government figures who have been shamed, banished, fired or simply hounded from public life. Instead, with resignation, they list some of the everyday activities that are no longer safe for the XX set (parking, walking, Uber, hotels, night time, bathrobes, drinking and, of course, men).
The dolled-up singers then reveal their own special strategies to avoid being victimized; traveling in packs, carrying their keys in their fists, acting insane and…wait!
It turns out there’s an app for pervy predatory behavior. One of the kewpie-like characters reveals that her father — obviously concerned for her safety — bought her a firearm!
My dad gave me a pink gun so…there’s a lot there.
We don’t think that means what she thinks it’s supposed to mean. If the number of women who report they’ve been sexually assaulted is accurate (almost 20%) armed self defense would seem to be an excellent deterrent strategy to ensure that the Harvey Weinsteins, Matt Lauers and Charlie Roses of the world keep their clammy hands (and other appendages) to themselves. Oh, and don’t think that women are the only victims, either.
The moral of the story: as another famous man of letters once wrote, an armed society is a polite society. One in which the creepers — even socially or politically prominent ones — feel less ability to assault weaker, more vulnerable subordinates and associates with impunity.
Not that anyone in the cast of Saturday Night Live will ever make that connection. Or, given where they live and work, be able to avail themselves of their right to keep and bear arms, even if they did.