Saturday Night Live‘s first Latina cast member Melissa Villaseñor went on a curious Twitter purge that thankfully caught the attention of Grist writer, Aura Bogado. After the celebratory news went viral, Bogado, being the active tweeter she is, took to the social media platform to follow Villaseñor, only to find the comedian’s account locked. “Odd,” she thought, before requesting to follow her.
“I took a screenshot and it sort of sat on my desktop for a few days,” she told Buzzfeed. “then I went back to check a few days later and the account was still locked, but I noticed that she had deleted about 2,000 tweets.“
Villaseñor’s deleted tweets—none of which were actually funny, but all captured by #OscarsSoWhite creator April Reign—reeked of xenophobia and anti-blackness.
“For anybody to say something like, ‘The world doesn’t need Mexicans on bikes,’ it’s just not okay,” Bogado added. “If you’re trying to make a joke, I can try and critique the joke if I think that it merits a critique, but those kinds of statements are essentially saying, ‘I’m scared to go on a date with a black man.’ I don’t find it humorous and honestly, with some of those tweets, maybe not all of them, but those two in particular, I don’t think it was meant to be funny. I think she was just indicating her sentiment — her problematic sentiment.”
One Facebook page, Xicanisma, dedicated to “Dismantling oppressive isms through privileged tears,” released a poignant statement concerning the lack of visibility of Latinxs of color: “[SNL] only hires token PoC for “diversity” and to make them play stereotypical roles […] I will never be content with White Latinx being the only form of representation we have. Sorry, ain’t about it. I want Brown/Black visibility. People were all mad that some people were critiquing the latter. Saying we were “haters” and to shut up and be happy. Anyway, here’s your girl.”
Villaseñor’s people told VIBE VIVA she is not commenting at the moment.