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Aasif Mandvi Mocks the Media in Brutal RTCA Dinner Speech


Like Stephen Colbert before him, Aasif Mandvi may have gotten a little too real last night at the 2015 Radio and Television Correspondents Association Dinner. His searing commentary on the state of the Washington media appeared to hit too close to home at times, and at least according to C-SPAN’s feed was met with awkward silence more than a few times.

But also like Colbert, the Daily Show correspondent pressed forward, making jokes about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress (“It took a black president to make Republicans finally wish for a Jewish one.”) and giving C-SPAN some advice on how it can provide more exciting Congressional coverage.

Mandvi said C-SPAN “needs to be more like CNN, and just forget about the news.” The only way to get Americans to care about the budget would be to make it suddenly disappear. Or, he said, they could go the Fox News route and “get the budget to shoot an unarmed black kid and then rush the budget’s defense.” Or perhaps, C-SPAN could cover the budget like MSNBC, “but their ratings are [already] so much better, it doesn’t even matter.”

“I don’t care how this goes tonight, because tomorrow it’s going to say ‘Muslim Bombs’ or ‘Muslim Kills,” Mandvi joked when one of his punchlines fell a little flat. “It’s bad for me either way.”

Much of the rest of his speech focused on what it’s like to be a Muslim in America today, including the subtle ways he messes with fellow airplane passengers by looking around suspiciously before putting his luggage in the overhead bin. “Look, I figure if people don’t want to make the distinction between a Muslims and a terrorist then why should I make a distinction between good, scared white people and racists?”

The host left the crowd with this inspiring message: “I know that you might feel like the Congressional dinner is the junior varsity of the White House Correspondents’ Dinner… But I don’t want you to fret, because there’s hope for you yet. I want you to remember the words of our president from last year when he said ISIS was the junior varsity of Al Qaeda. And look how well they’re doing now!”

“Remember Congressional correspondents, if ISIS can do it, so can you.”

Watch video below, via C-SPAN:

[Photo via screengrab]

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