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All hail to Trevor Noah: A new South African Hero

Once again a South African, this time the formidable Trevor Noah, has made his mark on the international stage. Noah has been appointed by Comedy Central to replace the veteran and well loved Jon Stewart as host of the legendary The Daily Show in the United States. This is no small achievement. The show is watched by millions of people in the USA and Canada Mondays through Thursdays each week and it has won no less that eighteen prime time Emmy awards! The show is described as a news satire television program and it focuses on news of the day, but with an angle that focus on comedy and satire.

Who is this man Trevor Noah?

If there is one man that can confidently claim  that he has overcome tremendous obstacles to reach the pinnacle of success then it must be Trevor Noah. He was born on 20 February 1984 from a Xhosa mother and a white, Swiss-German father. Don’t forget: this was a time when Apartheid ruled supreme in South Africa. Inter-racial relationships  were illegal and indeed, his mother was jailed and fined. The fact that his mother also had a Jewish heritage didn’t help, of course. What were the chances of such a boy, growing up in the tense and repressed township of Soweto to ever achieve anything worthwhile, never mind achieve his fondest ambitions? But he did. And we salute you, Trevor Noah!

The controversy around Trevor Noah 

Trevor Noah is no stranger to controversy. He has honed his skills on using his unique background to create comedy. Never forget: he knows all about being at the receiving end of prejudice, racism and hatred. So when he is criticized about saying “South Africans are as keen about recycling as the Israelis are about keeping peace” he is trying to be a honest commentator. He has many detractors that say that he is racist, anti-Semitic and chauvinistic. But these are the hallmarks of truly great comedians and satirists. They spare nobody and no subject is sacrosanct. Just ask Zapiro!

Trevor Noah will have his job cut out to make America laugh. In the meantime, however, he will certainly be laughing all the way to the bank!

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