Last Tuesday, Jimmy Kimmel made a joke about the Easter Egg Roll, which is traditionally put on by the First Lady. On his show, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, he joked that the only thing Melania Trump planned for the event was an escape.
He went further to show a clip of Trump reading a book to the children in which her accent leads her to saying “dees and dat” instead of “this and that” – a mistake in which Kimmel goes on to joke about as she continues to read.
Although the joke was meant to be seemingly harmless, Sean Hannity, a host on Fox News, took to Twitter to call Kimmel a pervert for attacking Trump’s accent. Kimmel appears to be an odd target considering Saturday Night Live’s long-running sketches leading up to the 2016 presidential election often mocked the entire Trump family. Similarly, Stephen Colbert interviewed “Melania Trump” after the State of the Union in a sketch that also mocks her accent and behaviours.
The feud went on for days as Hannity shared clips of an old The Man Show sketch — Kimmel's former comedy show — about women feeling his pants to guess what's inside. Hannity compared the act of the scripted series to the acts of Harvey Weinstein, diminishing the severity of what Weinstein did to so many women in Hollywood off-script.
Kimmel continued by tweeting:
Hannity claimed this comment was homophobic.
In an effort to diminish hate from the right due to a misinterpreted comedy sketch, Kimmel took to Twitter to apologise.
It’s unfortunate that a joke about Trump’s accent roped in comments of homophobia, racism, and sexual assault, mainly because of the irony. The right, under the Trump administration, is infamous for barking at “sensitive liberal millennials” and actively pushing a divisive agenda that has allowed homophobia, racism, and sexual assault to breed. Meanwhile Hannity fully supported Alabama Senator Roy Moore, who was accused of having a sexual encounter with a young teenage girl.
Kimmel’s joke were in bad taste; however, Hannity’s previous jokes about Michelle Obama —including teasing her for a rap video encouraging kids to attend college — were entirely too serious for a network dedicated to news.
As Kimmel says in his apology, he hopes Hannity will “continue his newly-found advocacy for women, immigrants and First Ladies and that he will triumph in his heroic battle against sexual harassment and perversion,” a rebuke of the failures of the Trump administration.
Hannity said he'll respond on Monday.
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