REBECCA REINGOLD ’17
Political figures are elected into office in order to represent a professional and appropriate view of the United States. A former Celebrity Star Apprentice and a veteran of hosting Saturday Night Live, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is no stranger to the limelight. After declaring his place in the presidential election, he has been trying to advocate his political agenda to the American public. A constant target of mockery in the comedic realm, it is hard to make a statement on the appropriateness of his agreement to self-deprecation. As a political figure, especially one trying to become President of the United States of America, it is relatively unprofessional of Donald Trump to present himself as a joke. That should be left to the comedians, whose job is to make fun of important figures.
Throughout the forty years that Saturday Night Live has been broadcasted on television, they have had countless politicians make guest appearances on their show. However, to legitimately host the show in the midst of political tension is simply unprofessional. Political bias aside, no important figure that may end up representing our country should be spending their time hosting a comedy show. Saturday Night Live is notorious for its political impact on viewers. When Trump hosted the show in 2004, he was not hosting as a political candidate. He was hosting as Donald Trump: Celebrity Apprentice. Other important political figures have hosted Saturday Night Live, but new presidential candidates have followed through with their participation. Interestingly enough, the presidential candidates that did host Saturday Night Live ended up not winning the presidential elections. By no means do I blame Saturday Night Live for why these presidential candidates did not win—Saturday Night Live is one of the greatest live television shows the world has ever seen, in my opinion. I do, however, blame the unprofessional decision of these political officials. Making a cameo is one thing, which I still believe to be mildly unprofessional pending the sketch they appear in, but hosting is another.
Saturday Night Live is one of the hardest comedic jobs out there; the comedians and writers on the show have one full week to think of countless fresh and new sketches in order to please viewers. This position is incredibly time consuming and very exhausting to cast members and writers. With that said, it is concerning that a presidential candidate who should be spending his time proving his legitimacy to the country chose to spend an entire week focused on hosting a comedic television show. Had Trump wanted to be in the limelight to prove to the country that he’s laidback and can take a joke, a simple cameo would have sufficed.
Contrarily, some could argue that his decision to host the show could help him succeed in connecting to younger voters and proving to the public that he is actually a “cool guy.” But a president is a president. By mocking himself and spending his very valuable time on a comedy television show not only makes him look unprofessional, but it makes him look weak. Our concern for electing our next President of the United States should not be that he is able to “lighten up” and be “chill.” The reputation of our president should be that he is calm under pressure, makes good political choices, and devotes his time to bettering the country. Trump makes a lot of important points regarding politics during his political interviews on how he believes we should better the country. Unfortunately, many Americans take him as a joke and speculate that his presidential candidacy is a political move on the part of the Clinton campaign to earn Hillary Clinton more votes. Trump has been rising in the polls because he has been successful in staying true to his honest demeanor. Yes, Trump came into the presidential election with the reputation of an angry reality star with an unimaginable amount of money. However, he has proved his mental and political strength to the country and gained many political advantages as a result. Unfortunately, his decision to host the show seems to be two steps back. Trump is a businessman; running for president is a business. It is a political business. Since Trump has an incredible amount of experience in the business world, it is relatively confusing that he made such a silly mistake in hosting the show.
Recently, Hillary Clinton made a cameo on Saturday Night Live as well. Yes, the sketch on which she appeared was funny, but it made her look extremely unprofessional. They mocked her reputation and she jumped in to mock a very serious concern amongst Americans: her “deleted” e-mails. This made her look unprofessional and even dishonest. Trump, someone who is proving himself to the public more and more, should have looked at Hillary Clinton’s mistake and been smarter with his decision to host.