Leslie Jones Under Fire for Making Joke About Slavery, Her Dating Life

Image: Leslie Jones Under Fire for Making Joke About Slavery, Her Dating Life

Tuesday, 06 May 2014 03:01 PM

By Michael Mullins

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Leslie Jones, a comedian turned writer for "Saturday Night Live," triggered a firestorm this weekend after she appeared to make light of the American slave experience by comparing it to her lackluster dating life in her sketch called "No. 1 Slave Draft Pick."

While appearing on SNL's news-show parody "Weekend Update," Jones, who is black, complained that she had difficulty finding a man because of her physique.

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"See, I’m single right now, but back in the slave days, I would have never been single. I’m 6 feet tall and I’m strong," she said.

"I’m just saying that back in the slave days, my love life would have been way better. Massah would have hooked me up with the best brotha on the plantation. And every nine months I'd be in the corner having a super baby," Jones continued. "I would be the No. 1 slave draft pick!"

The controversial skit was immediately attacked by Ebony.com editor Jamilah Lemieux, who expressed her disgust on Twitter.




Lemieux is referring to the fact that in the skit Jones compared herself to "12 Years a Slave" star Lupita Nyong'o, who has a thin frame and was recently named the "Most Beautiful Woman" by People Magazine.

Jones fired back at Lemieux and other online critics.

"Y’all so busy trying to be self righteous you miss what the joke really is. Very sad I have to defend myself to black people," she wrote on Twitter.

Jones said that if black male comedians made a similar skit, the public's reaction would be very different.

"Now I’m betting if Chris Rock or Dave (Chappelle) did that joke or Jay Z or Kanye put it in a rap they would be called brilliant," she wrote. "Cause they all do this type of material. Just cause it came from a strong black woman who ain’t afraid to be real y’all mad."

SNL has yet to release a statement on the issue, the New York Daily News reported.

Jones was recently hired by SNL along with two other black females, in an attempt to diversify its staff. Some have criticized the show for its predominantly white staff.





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