Rapper Megan Thee Stallion made her debut performance on the Season 46 premiere of “Saturday Night Live” (SNL) on Oct. 3, where she raised awareness for the Black Lives Matter movement and the protection of Black men and women.
The return of SNL struck the interest of many people.
Ellis Mitchell, a senior sports management major, said he is a huge fan of SNL and is “excited the show is back in Studio 8H,” after it was forced to finish its last season virtually as a result of the pandemic.
Mitchell said he was curious how the show would address Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis and felt it was smart to have a disclaimer to begin. He added that he felt the audience of first responders was a “nice gesture” and that “[SNL] is really taking the precautions seriously.”
Emma Boeninghaus, a sophomore financial technology major, shared similar sentiments.
“I was really satisfied with the return of SNL and can’t wait for another episode,” Boeninghaus said.
Some viewers said they were astounded by Megan’s Black Lives Matter tribute, which began with the sounds of imitated gunshots and a quote from Malcolm X: “The most disrespected, unprotected, neglected person in America is the Black woman.”
Megan’s performance came just a week after Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron spoke at a news conference in the Breonna Taylor case presented to the grand jury. Cameron began by expressing his condolences toward Taylor’s family and then said that “[officers] were justified in the return of deadly fire” in Taylor’s case.
“We need to protect our Black women and love our Black women,” Megan said during her performance. “Because at the end of the day, we need our Black women. We need to protect our Black men and stand up for our Black men, because at the end of the day, we’re tired of seeing hashtags about Black men.”
Later in her performance, Megan included a quote from activist Tamika Mallory, who said, “Daniel Cameron is no different than the sellout negroes that sold our people into slavery.”
Many students expressed support for Megan including a statement about Taylor’s case and Black Lives Matter throughout her performance.
“Megan has always stood for what’s right and hearing her message about protecting Black women and touching on the ruling of Breonna Taylor was a wakeup call for those who are unaware or not being conducive to helping solve the problem,” Tro’vonta Burgess, a junior marketing and IT management major, said.
Burgess said Megan “brought up significant issues that need to be addressed in front of the whole world.”
Shardai Smith, a junior political science and creative writing major, said she also agreed with Megan.
“Black women are the most vilified group in America,” Smith said. “Black women are never able to take a break from the hard realities of the world.”
Cameron responded to Megan’s performance while on “Fox and Friends,” where he said, “The fact that someone would get on national television and make disparaging comments about me because I’m simply doing my job is disgusting.”
Despite Cameron’s comments, many still stand in support of SNL and Megan’s choice to bring awareness to Black lives and the encouragement of protecting Black men and women.
“As a society facing so many issues around civil and equal rights,” Burgess said, “If you are not an advocate for change or helping the cause, then you are indirectly harming [it].”
Tierra Boyd can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.