“Maybe it’s time to get uncomfortable,” said “Late Night” writer Amber Ruffin on Monday.
“Late Night with Seth Meyers” was on hiatus last week as protests raged across the country in response to the death of George Floyd, a Black man who died after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck. As the show resumed this week, “Late Night” started its episodes on Monday and Tuesday with Ruffin explaining scary encounters she’s had with police.
During Monday’s show, Ruffin recalled her horrifying experience as a teenage driver, being singled out and screamed at by a police officer as she listened to Busta Rhymes.
“I think, ‘This is how I die. This man is going to kill me.’ And I start crying. I am bawling, because I am 100% sure that this man is going to drag me out of my car, beat me to death. And tomorrow on the news everyone will be like, ‘She didn’t seem angry, but who knows?’” Ruffin said.
In another story on Tuesday, Ruffin described how an officer pulled a gun on her just for skipping down an alleyway near a police station.
“He goes, ‘Put your hands on the hood of the car! Put your hands on the hood!’ This man is furious. I comply, and his partner pats me down. Now, this man is livid. It makes no sense. His anger level towards me is insane. I am a young, adorable, delight literally skipping down the street, and I’ve infuriated him,” Ruffin recalled.
The “Late Night” comedian said it’s crazy Black people don’t tell stories like hers all the time, but there’s an unspoken rule that they’re supposed to “take it in stride.”
“Can you imagine having someone pull a gun on you and being expected to take it in stride? Now imagine a bunch of incidents like that over one lifetime, multiply that by 43 million African Americans, and that is why things are like this right now. That is why people are angry.”
She concluded: “And if you’re not angry ... why not?”