Tuesday’s new Daily Show sees Jon Stewart tackling the war on Christmas, discussing a controversial tweet and interviewing Jared Leto.
A host on the FOX News morning show Fox & Friends has been criticized for overreacting to what’s essentially a pointless story. A YMCA in Minneapolis has a new swimming program coached by two Muslim girls, which required small changes like a one-hour closure of the men’s locker room, etc. The FOX correspondent, almost predictably, deemed it as “sharia law is changing everything.”
Stewart noted the harshness of the attack, saying religious tension always increases around the holidays. Stewart focused on two people who are taking the defense in the war on Christmas. The first, Sarah Palin, has a new book out about the meaning of Christmas, the mere mention of which elicited laughs from the audience. In an interview, Palin said she teaches her kids about all religions and leaves a menorah out for all of December. Hanukkah is, of course, only eight days long. Stewart also said that putting candles on the antlers of a moose head does not count as a menorah.
Bill O’Reilly has been taking issue with some semantics this year. He said on his show that he was uncomfortable with Santa bringing “holiday” presents to Macy’s, since Santa already constitutes Christmas. But Stewart pointed out the historical context of St. Nicholas, who originally had no bearing on Christmas.
Palin and O’Reilly both praised the commercialization of Christmas, with Palin saying it brings joy. This puts them at odds with Pope Francis, who recently criticized commercialism. “When will the Pope end his war on Christmas?” Stewart asked.
The second segment rolled right through with more criticism of the right. The RNC put up a tweet on Sunday about remembering Rosa Parks’ “bold stand in ending racism.” The tweet came under fire immediately, as people did not take too kindly to old white people declaring that racism was over. Stewart pulled out a textbook about racism from 1955-present, that was entirely empty. The RNC later tweeted that they should have said that they remember her role in “fighting to end racism.” The segment, called “Parks and Recognition,” ended with Stewart coming up with more apology tweets, with the RNC correcting that she didn’t ‘stand’ against anything, and then that ‘they remember’ isn’t right because they never forgot her, and finally panicking and talking about how great “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” was.