I've really just about had it with Jon Stewart:
After facing criticism for his recent Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear in Washington, D.C., Jon Stewart has come up with the perfect solution to keep everyone happy: Another rally.Oh my aching sides.
On last night's episode of "The Daily Show," Stewart aired the grievances of left-leaning critics, including "Real Time" host Bill Maher, who claimed the rally was about nothing, and Keith Olbermann, who said Stewart created a "false equivalence" between the services of MSNBC and Fox News.
Stewart then joked that he will hold another event on November 13 to make it right, calling the occasion "the Rally to Determine Precisely the Percentage of Blame to Be Doled Out to the Left and the Right for Our Problems Because We All Know That the Only Thing That Matters Is That the Other Guys Are Worse Than We Are and/or Fear."
The thing that Jon Stewart is really, really, really missing here is underlined by the fact that it's three white, straight, thin, wealthy men (who publicly present as cis and able-bodied) with their own vast media platforms who are arguing about this shit, when the material, practical, demonstrable effects of the differences between the Left and the Right are not most evident among the most privileged of USians.
It is marginalized people who most feel, in all aspects of their lives, the difference between the Left and the Right (monikers which are, btw, distinct from the Democrats and the Republicans, who are generally center-right and extreme right).
Women's bodily autonomy, right to value her own life over a fetus, right to be childless by choice, freedom from marginalizing bullying, harassment, and legislation, and access to legal medical procedures, rape kits, emergency contraception, equal pay, equal opportunity, and equal rights are not (generally) under attack from the Left.
Gay, lesbian, bisexual, and queer people's basic equality, fundamental rights of marriage, parenting, employment, housing, healthcare, inheritance, etc., freedom from marginalizing bullying, harassment, and legislation, and personal safety are not (generally) under attack from the Left.
People of color do not (generally) find their basic equality, fundamental rights of access and opportunity, freedom from marginalizing bullying, harassment, and legislation, and personal safety under attack from the Left.
Trans people's employment rights, healthcare equity, and personal safety are not (generally) under attack from the Left.
The social programs on which poor people depend to keep them from falling off the edge—foodstamps, housing programs, healthcare assistance—the things that can make the difference between homelessness and a roof over one's head, eating and starving, life and death, are not under attack from the Left.
Undocumented immigrants are (generally) not demonized and scapegoated and spoken about with the most vicious eliminationist language, while simultaneously being exploited in horrendous working conditions, by the Left.
People with physical and/or psychological disabilities do not (generally) find their basic equality, fundamental rights of access and opportunity, freedom from marginalizing bullying, harassment, and legislation, and personal safety under attack from the Left.
When women and their allies and their abortion providers are targeted for violence, it is by rightwingers. Dr. George Tiller was not killed by a leftist. When gay/bi women and men, people of color, trans people, people with disabilities are targeted for violence, victimized by hate crimes, it is not progressives who wield the weapons.
The most vulnerable people in our society, whose actual lives are at risk because of virulent, violent, unconstrained hatred, are not being targeted by the Left.
That fucking matters.
And it matters not because I'm interested in bickering about "Precisely the Percentage of Blame to Be Doled Out to the Left and the Right for Our Problems," but because to gloss over that reality is to aid and abet with indifferent silence the extreme elements who would not merely see marginalized people indefinitely interred in their marginalization, but would see them FUCKING DEAD, given half the chance.
That's why Fred Phelps carrying "God Hates Fags" signs and my using vulgar language and an indelicate tone to vociferously defend gay equality is not the bloody same. And, let's be honest: I wouldn't be screaming my fool head off all the time in defense of gay equality if assholes like Fred Phelps didn't go on the offensive against my family, friends, and fellow citizens.
You're goddamn right I yell. But it's because I HAVE TO.
People die because of this hatred. I'm not going to be made to feel guilty because I don't respond to deadly antipathy with moderation.
The shame belongs to someone so fucking privileged that he doesn't feel obliged to yell, too.
Jon Stewart responded to criticism by "intercutting clips of Maher and other detractors of Stewart's recent D.C. rally (Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow) with a parody of Martin Scorsese's boxing classic Raging Bull featuring Stewart taking a slow-motion beating."
Hilarious. What a comedy fucking genius.
You know, Jon, there are people in this country who REALLY GET ATTACKED AND BEATEN because of who they are and/or what they believe. And the fact that you can equate criticism with violence is precisely the reason why you deserve the criticism you're getting.
For someone whose business is irony, you ought to appreciate that. Asshole.