Sarah Silverman frequently makes jokes about her Jewish heritage, and this week on Conan she took things to a whole new level.
The 45-year-old comedian showed up dressed in a Hitler outfit to discuss, of all things, comparisons made between presidential candidate Donald Trump and Adolf Hitler. In a brief interview with Conan O'Brien, Silverman-as-Hitler pretended to be grievously offended by his comparison to Trump.
"It bums me out," Silverman said. "Sometimes I watch him and I'm like, 'is that how people see me?'"
While the skit drew lots of laughs from the crowd, plenty of people weren't pleased. The Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC), a major Jewish organization, took both Silverman and the media to task for invoking Hitler and Nazi imagery in 2016.
Silverman's skit was meant to poke fun at the comparisons between the two, but it's also a good reminder at how ridiculous the whole thing is. Regardless of political affiliation, comparing someone to Hitler seems to become more and more popular and less and less impactful every day — and our electoral process and our presidential candidates are worth having impactful conversations about.
"You want to mock Drumpf, ok, he's fair game. Take him on in every venue, including comedy," SWC Associate Dean Rabbi Abraham Cooper told The Algemeiner. "Denounce any statement he makes. But inserting history's greatest criminal — who launched a world war that left 55 million people dead and who mass-murdered 6 million Jews — as a political prop in the 2016 campaign is beyond the pale. It demeans Hitler's victims and debases history."
For now, we'd all be wise to use this skit as a reminder to leave the Hitler comparisons behind. Silverman's right — the shoe doesn't quite fit.