December 10, 2018 at 9:06 am PDT | by Mariah Cooper
Michael Che defends Kevin Hart in Oscars controversy

Michael Che (Screenshot via YouTube)

Michael Che defended Kevin Hart amid the Oscars controversy during the “Weekend Update” segment on the latest episode of “Saturday Night Live.”

Hart was on board to host the Academy Awards in February but stepped down after old homophobic tweets and jokes resurfaced.

“I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past,” Hart apologized on Thursday. “I am evolving and want to continue to do so.”

Che kicked off his commentary by criticizing the Academy for nominating Mel Gibson for Best Director for “Hacksaw Ridge” despite Gibson’s track record of making antisemitic, homophobic and racist comments.

“Didn’t the Academy nominate Mel Gibson for an award just last year?” Che asks.”If Kevin Hart isn’t clean enough to host the Oscars, then no black comic is. The only black comic I know that’s cleaner than Kevin Hart is booked for the next three to 10 years.”

A photo of Bill Cosby appears on screen after the joke.

Che isn’t the only comedian to defend Hart. Nick Cannon posted old tweets from female comedians Chelsea Handler, Amy Schumer and Sarah Silverman which include the word “fag” or “faggot.”

“Interesting. I wonder if there was any backlash here,” Cannon tweeted.

DL Hughley also made it clear he stands by Hart in a series of tweets.

“Pose” star and transgender actress Indya Moore called out Hughley for defending Hart but Hughley stood firm on his viewpoint.

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