Politics

Jon Stewart Calls out All the 'Blue Lives Matter' Politicians

Jon Stewart is mad as hell and isn't going to take any more hypocrisy from politicians who he feels are exploiting the Blue Lives Matter slogan for political gain.

The former host of "The Daily Show" made a surprise appearance on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" Thursday to deliver a passionate diatribe against Donald Trump and the faction of the Republican Party that supports him.

Stewart was perhaps at this most passionate when he tore into those who feel they "own" the issue of protecting police and firefighters.

"[...] You just want that person to give you your country back, because you feel that you are this country’s rightful owner. The only problem with that: this country isn’t yours. You don’t own it. It never was. There is no 'real' America. You don’t own it. You don’t own patriotism. You don’t own Christianity. You sure as hell don’t own respect for the bravery and sacrifice for military, police, and firefighters. Trust me!

I saw a lot of people on the convention floor with their 'Blue Lives Matter' rhetoric who either remained silent or actively fought against the 9/11 first responders’ bill reauthorization. So I see you, and I see your bullshit."

Stewart has a history of being a strong supporter of 9/11 First Responders Bill.

The bill, formally known as the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, sought to provide free medical relief and treatment to firefighters and rescue workers who became ill as a result of breathing in toxic fumes in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. It was named after NYPD officer James Zadroga who died in 2006 of a respiratory disease he contracted from saving others at ground zero.

Amazingly, the bill failed to pass when it was first introduced in December of 2010, due to a Republican filibuster. It needed 60 to pass and was blocked at 57 to 42, with 41 Republicans voting no.

It went on to pass later that month.

The bill expired in October of 2015, leaving many wondering if they were going to lose their health care. Supporters of the bill accused Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky of stalling the legislation in order to gain concession on American oil exports. 

Congress finally renewed the bill in December of 2015.

It's Easy to Understand Why Stewart is So Angry

While Jon Stewart didn't name any names, we can infer who he was referring to by taking a look at those Trump supports who previously played a role in killing or stalling the bill. While voting "No" against the bill is not definitive proof that someone hates police officers or firefighters, it is a sign of the greater hypocrisy Stewart was pointing to: you cannot claim ownership of the issue of police safety while having a history of voting against it.

voted no for 9-11 health care bill

Some of Trump's key supporters are the very same who worked so hard to prevent the bill from being passed. Take Jeff Sessions (R-AL), for example, he's now one of Trump's most vocal supporters, and he recently co-authored the "Blue Lives Matter Act," which seeks to impose harsher punishments on convicted cop killers (it's also been criticized for being overly broad and unconstitutional). However, Sessions also voted against the 9/11 First Responders Bill back in 2010, and was reportedly among a group of Senators who attempted to run out the clock on the bill so it couldn't be voted on during the Senate's lame duck session.

Does this mean Sessions is a hypocrite who hates cops? Of course not. However, it does call into question if Trump and his supporters are truly committed to police safety, and not just embracing the issue because it's politically convenient.

And you can see Jon Stewart's entire Late Show appearance below.