(Update February 11: The protest has been postponed. Due to Olympic programming, Saturday Night Live is on a brief hiatus. Yellow Peril Faction announced the protest will be held when live taping of SNL returns, likely March 1. YPF also announced that the New York City Asian American Student Conference and Fascinasians will join the protest.)
A protest has been scheduled before the next live taping of Saturday Night Live in New York City in response to the February 1 yellowface episode.
A group calling itself Yellow Peril Faction along with Not Your Asian Sidekick are joining together to organize the demonstration.
The groups are demanding that Saturday Night Live apologize for 39 years of yellowface on the program and promise never to do it again.
They also want race and cultural sensitivity training for all staff that works on the show.
The sketch this past Saturday involved a “kung fu master” portrayed by a white actor in yellowface and an Asian accent.
In a written statement, the groups said:
“Asian people across the world are fed up with being portrayed in
degrading and delegitimizing ways. Racism and cultural appropriation for
the sake of comedy is not comedy. Our cultures are not for people to
appropriate and butcher at their convenience for the purpose of
“cultural appreciation.” Our images are not for the face of our
oppressor to wear as a costume. Our voices are not for native English
speakers to imitate and mock—they are ours and we will be heard.”
The sketch on the line running program came just more than two weeks after the creators of How I Met Your Mother were forced to apologize for using yellowface make up in a show that was intended to be a homage to kung fu.
Saturday Night Live has a long history of yellowface characters beginning with John Belushi’s samarai in 1975.
The protest is scheduled for 10 pm on February 15 at NBC studios at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York.