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Wednesday, August 15, 2018

After the France National Team won gold at the World Cup in Russia, Trevor Noah joked that 80% of Les Bleus 23-man roster was of African descent, smirking that “Africa won the World Cup.” The line got laughs, like just about everything the brilliant Daily Show anchor says to his audience. But the joke hasn’t sat so well with the government of France.

French Ambassador Gerard Araud addressed the comic harshly in a letter sent on Wednesday, charging that Noah’s racial humor has crossed a line into the type of rhetoric found on the French far-right. Some of the country’s citizens with African backgrounds have been called “not really French” by a loud minority of white supremacists.

In today’s emotionally-charged clip, Trevor denies Araud’s accusation that the joke challenges the French-ness of the athletes, and retaliates by questioning whether a “no hyphenated French” policy is the direction France’s culture should be moving in.

Is it just a matter of time before Trevor Noah is duking it out with Macron himself? Over the World Cup, no less?

Brief for the water cooler.