To be honest, the only Daily Show episode I’ve seen with Trevor Noah was his debut. I thought he did an OK job (a little nervous, but whatever).
I really liked Jon Stewart back in the day. I was a lot more liberal then, but Stewart was the model of a decent liberal who approaches issues with rationality and humor to me.
Looking at the interview Noah did with Blaze TV’s Tomi Lahren, the show has undergone a dramatic shift. Noah is much more social justice warrior than Stewart, and there seems to be a much stiffer rapport between him and the his conservative guests.
I guess it’s unfair to compare him to Stewart, but you can also tell he’s mimicking Jon’s style. There was always a moment where Stewart would pick out something someone said and take it to an absurd degree. The result would be genuine humor between him and the person he interviewed. Trevor does that in a much more nasty way, but we’ll get to that.
Something else that has dramatically changed is The Daily Show’s audience. Apparently now they’re just Bill Maher’s audience but with Red Bull and cocaine being injected directly into their veins before the show.
Tomi was nervous, but whenever she said something reaching a conservative point there would be a cavalcade of hisses and boos from the audience. At least Maher knows when to tell his people to stfu. Trevor apparently doesn’t.
So they keep talking for a while, and it’s pretty petty stuff. Tomi makes weak, nervous arguments and Trevor comes back with a lame point that could be refuted by a more seasoned hand. Tomi’s just too nervous; this is probably the biggest interview she’s ever done. Trevor also used this tone of voice that reminds me of a shrink combined with your childhood friend’s super strict parents. In other words, smuuug.
But here’s a really shitty thing Trevor did that lost me. They start talking about how Tomi has called Black Lives Matter the new KKK and this happens:
Trevor: Do you really believe you’re criticizing and you’re not malintentioned when you say things like Black Lives Matter is the new KKK? Because you realize Black Lives Matter can’t be the new KKK, the KKK is still around. They have not vacated their premises, and most importantly, to say Black Lives Matter is the new KKK is to really, really minimize what the KKK did and what they stand for, that is not the same thing. Surely you understand the incendiary feeling of your comments.
Tomi: It’s controversial, but I think there are some things that need to be said. When the Black Lives Matter movement is going out with signs saying “Fry Em’ Like Bacon” or “F the Police” when they’re going out saying when you see a white person, target them. That is happening, Trevor, that happened in Milwaukee not too long ago. So when that becomes the narrative and your starting to loot, burn, and riot, what did the KKK do?
Trevor: That is not…look…we’ll go around in circles…did you say “What did the KKK do?” (laughter) Wow.
I had to pause and smoke a cigarette after that last part. It was such a disingenuous, cowardly joke that he knew would get cheap laughter from his liberal audience who will all go to sleep at night feeling good that they’ve done their civic duty by applauding Trevor for implying Tomi Lahren likes the KKK.
Technically, Tomi’s point was essentially correct. Both the KKK and BLM have had advocates who have used violence and hate speech in the name of the organization. There’s an actual argument to be had about whether these are outliers or not, but Trevor does the exact opposite by using the “racist” card.
Also, come on. Nobody takes the KKK seriously anymore, not even the alt-right. Even if they technically exist with nine guys doesn’t mean they’re having any sort of actual impact on the country.
But I don’t even care about that. Trevor made a shitty joke to frame Tomi as a KKK supporter and then has the gall to attack her for being angry. Angry, racist white girl is Liberal 101 these days, and it’s really unfortunate. The Daily Show is now part of the reason people in this country can’t have a decent conversation about politics in this country.