The National Federation of the Blind and N.Y. Governor David Paterson say that Saturday Night Live crossed the line this weekend with its sketch featuring Fred Armisen playing the blind governor in a segment for Weekend Update with Seth Meyers (clip below). “The governor is sure that Saturday Night Live,with all of its talent, can find a way to be funny without beingoffensive,” Paterson spokesman Errol Cockfield said in a statementSunday. The National Federation of the Blindspokesman Chris Danielsen said the skit portrayed the governor asbefuddled and disoriented and is “absolutelywrong.” At this point, I think we actually count on SNL to ruffle feathers — but it has GOT to be funny as well. The Armisen bit relied on dumb blind-joke cliches, like Armisen’s Paterson unknowingly holding up a chart upside down. What’s more, do people outside of New York’s tristate area know enough about Paterson as a public servant to take away anything beyond the show’s attempt to find comedy in the befuddled, disoriented portrayal the Federation of the Blind mentions? I don’t mind an offensive joke, but without the actual joke part, it’s just plain offensive.
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