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SNL and the Susan B. Anthony skit: Did the writers intend to do that?


Elizabeth Scalia - published on 01/19/17

Saturday Night Live spot makes no compliment to modern women but did they know suffragette actually said that?

Did you see this skit? It’s not very good, and you have to watch it to the end, but then…surprise!

One wonders if the SNL writers know what they were doing with this bit, or if they meant to make modern women look like such insipid, shallow airheads.

They also make the great suffragette Susan B. Anthony look neurotic, shrill, and needy as she forces herself again and again into their whiny conversation, until — in a last ditch effort to get their attention — she blurts out, “And abortion is murder!”

That, of course, finally hit the mark and the modern women are stunned and offended. Fin.

It’s possible the piece has something smart to say about how we value our historic icons as grand ideas, rather than as people — and that’s certainly something worth exploring — but if that’s what SNL was going for, they didn’t quite hit the mark. The skit is so muddled, nothing is really clear, except that the writers don’t think much of women.

But did they know that Susan B. Anthony did describe abortion as “child murder”?

Very likely they know it now.

And “Susan B.” seems…unamused.

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