As the Food and Drug Administration moves closer to approving the first coronavirus vaccine, Saturday Night Live comedian Michael Che has expressed concerns about it.
On the Dec. 5 installment of the Weekend Update, Che shared his doubts about the vaccine, and whether Black people will be given the “real one.”
“I got mixed feelings on this vaccine,” the SNL comic said. “On the one hand, I’m Black, so naturally I don’t trust it. But, on the other hand, I’m on a White TV show, so I might actually get the real one.”
While Che was joking, we think, a new survey by the Pew Research Center found that just 42 percent of African Americans say they plan to get a COVID-19 vaccine once it becomes available to the public. That’s compared to 63 percent of Hispanics and 61 percent of White adults.
As of Saturday, COVID-19 had claimed more than 281,000 lives in the U.S., the New York Times reported.
Black people have been disproportionately affected by the virus, yet it’s no surprise that skepticism about the vaccine is high in the Black community.
Many people cite the notorious Tuskegee experiment. The study titled “Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male” was conducted by the U.S. government, starting in the 1930s. It involved hundreds of Black men over a 40-year period who were misled to believe they were being treated for “bad blood,” when in fact many received no medications at all and were allowed to die of syphilis.
Amid concerns about the safety of the fast-tracked coronavirus vaccine, former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton have all said they’re willing to get the vaccine on camera, to convince people that it’s safe.
Maybe that will change Che’s mind. Watch the SNL segment below.