Saturday Night Live‘s cold open this weekend featured an imaginary panel discussion between four news anchors in Minnesota — two black, two white — in which all assumed that Derek Chauvin was guilty of murdering George Floyd, and merely disagreed about whether the state was racist enough for a jury to acquit him.
The joke: the white panelists presumed naïvely that Chauvin would be found guilty, while the black panelists were skeptical of the justice system, and of Minnesota itself.
All agreed Chauvin was guilty, and that the prosecution was solid.
“The video footage alone should tell you everything you need to know about what happened,” one of the white anchors said; the black anchors called Chauvin’s defense “deplorable,” saying that raising Floyd’s drug use was an “act of desperation.”
That may reflect the mainstream media consensus, but it does not reflect reality in the courtroom, where the defense spent all week poking holes in the prosecution’s arguments.
The sketch lampooned the supposed racial differences in outlook about the police and the justice system — even among the apparently liberal white journalists. At one point, the two sides turned to the black weatherman for his view, and he said that while, “obviously, it’s an open-and-shut case,” the fact that Chauvin is “a white cop in Minnesota” would be decisive.
One of the black anchors mocked one of her white colleagues throughout by referring to his surname, “Jorgensen.”
At one point, the white anchors suggested that non-violent protest was preferable to destroying property; the black panelists disagreed: “It’s just property”; “There’s insurance.”
All agreed that there is a “glaring discrepancy in the way black people are treated by police.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.