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Navy SEAL fires back at SNL after skit making fun of him losing an eye

Navy SEAL Lieutenant Commander Dan Crenshaw. (Dan Crenshaw for U.S. Congress/Released)
November 05, 2018

A Navy SEAL veteran and congressional candidate has responded after comedian Pete Davidson mocked his appearance in a “Saturday Night Live” skit over the weekend, when SNL showed a photo of Dan Crenshaw wearing an eye patch.

Crenshaw was injured and blinded in an IED explosion in Afghanistan in 2012.

Davidson saw the photo of Crenshaw during the show’s “Weekend Update” segment, and he commented, “You may be surprised to hear he’s a Congressional candidate from Texas and not a hit man in a porno movie. […] I’m sorry, I know he lost his eye in war, or whatever. Whatever.”

Crenshaw tweeted Sunday afternoon, “Good rule in life: I try hard not to offend; I try harder not to be offended. That being said, I hope @nbcsnl recognizes that vets don’t deserve to see their wounds used as punchlines for bad jokes.”

Crenshaw appeared on Fox & Friends on Monday morning where he again commented on the skit.

“I have thick skin. In the SEAL teams, we poke fun at each other all the time. But I have certain rules for when my friends poke fun of me,” Crenshaw said. “It has to be original, it has to be witty, and it has to be actually funny. And this wasn’t funny.”

In the skit, Davidson singled out all but one Republican candidate to give his “first impressions,” which entailed a one-by-one mockery of each candidate’s appearance alongside their photo. Florida Gov. Rick Scott and Rep. Peter King were among the line-up.

When he arrived at Crenshaw’s photo, Davidson and the audience began laughing at his visible eyepatch.

“You may be surprised to hear he’s a Congressional candidate from Texas and not a hit man in a porno movie,” Davidson said of Crenshaw, eliciting more laughter from the audience.

“I’m sorry, I know he lost his eye in war, or whatever. Whatever,” Davidson added.

Watch the skit below:

Crenshaw is currently running for the 2nd Congressional District in Texas, which is also his hometown, according to his website.

In 2012, Crenshaw was serving on his third deployment in Afghanistan’s Helmand province when a 15-pound IED exploded before him, killing his interpreter. He was left injured and blinded, and his treatment included a five-day medically-induced coma. When he awoke, his right eye was gone, and doctors weren’t sure he’d regain the sight in his left eye.

Numerous surgeries helped Crenshaw regain his eyesight, and he later deployed again to the Middle East in 2014 and to South Korea in 2016.

Crenshaw medically retired in 2016 after serving 10 years in the Navy SEALs and achieving the rank of lieutenant commander. He has received two Bronze Stars, a Purple Heart, a Navy Commendation Medal with Valor and several other recognitions.

Former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, a Navy Reserve officer himself, also spoke out against the skit.

“Dan Crenshaw is a Navy seal who lost an eye on the battlefield, and ‘Saturday Night Live’ mocked him for that,” he said, according to USA Today. “This isn’t just Pete Davidson that did this, they are continuing to promote this video.”

“He approved of it; he watched it happen,” Spicer said. “That entire ‘anchor’ desk of… Weekend Update was laughing at it, and then they continue to promote it on YouTube.

“This is not apologetic,” Spicer continued. “These people mocked a combat veteran, and this is what they think is funny these days? Lorne Michael should be fired.”

However, Crenshaw isn’t seeking retribution or an apology.

“We don’t need to be outwardly outraged. I don’t need to demand apologies from them. They can do whatever they want,” Crenshaw told TMZ. “They’re feeling the heat from around the country right now, and that’s fine.”