NEW YORK – Top-rated American comedian, writer, producer, director, actor, media critic, Jon Stewart, has slammed America’s response to the mass shooting in an African-American South Carolina church, predicting that nothing would be done in the wake of a “terrorist attack” that left nine people dead.
In a sombre opening to his highly popular ‘Daily Show’, he promised it would contain no jokes, Stewart said some people were already working hard to discount the idea that racism was the motive behind the massacre.
Dylann Roof, a 21-year-old white man, is currently in custody in Charleston, South Carolina.
“I have one job, and it’s a pretty simple job. I come in in the morning, we look at the news, and I write jokes about it … but I didn’t do my job today,” Stewart said.
Prior to introducing his guest – the Pakistani Nobel peace prize-winner, Malala Yousafzai – Stewart told viewers: “I have nothing other than just sadness that once again we have to peer into the abyss of the depraved violence that we do to each other, and the nexus of a just gaping racial wound that will not heal but we pretend doesn’t exist.
“Our guest tonight is an incredible person who suffered unspeakable violence by extremists and her perseverance and determination through that to continue on is an incredible inspiration,” Stewart said. “And to be quite honest with you, I don’t think there’s anyone else in the world that I would rather talk to tonight.”
Malala told Stewart it’s important for regular people to speak up about injustice.
“Sometimes we wait for others, and think that Martin Luther (King) should rise among us, and Nelson Mandela should rise among us and speak up for us,” she said. “But we never realize that there are normal humans like us, and if we step forward, we can also bring change just like them.”
Malala’s life exemplifies that philosophy. She began to gain international attention in 2009, when she wrote a blog for the BBC about living under the influence of the Taliban. She subsequently became an international advocate for girls’ education.
The teen was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman in 2012 while riding a bus home from school. A group of men boarded the bus, asked for Malala specifically and shot her in the head. After her recovery, she founded the Malala Fund, a nonprofit dedicated to helping girls worldwide attend school. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014.