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Jon Stewart on the liberal “hypocrisy” after Donald Trump’s election

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After stepping down from The Daily Show desk last year, we’ve had to make sense of an increasingly bizarre political landscape without the constant reassuring insight and analysis of Jon Stewart.

So it’s a relief to have Stewart back in our lives, a week after Donald Trump’s election, as he sat down with Charlie Rose on CBS This Morning to give his opinions on the state of America.

Talking about the exhausting campaign process, Stewart said he found it baffling that “nobody asked Donald Trump: what is it that makes America ‘great’?” Stewart’s best guess was that Trump assessed the metrics as a “competition”, as crude America vs. the world relativism, and that Trump’s “candidacy has animated the thought that a multi-cultural democracy is impossible … but that’s what America, by it’s founding and constitution is!”

Stewart also warned that, though he “felt Donald Trump disqualified himself at numerous points,” there is now a tendency for commentators to define Trump supporters “by the worst of his rhetoric. There are guys in my neighbourhood – that I love, that I respect, that I think have incredible qualities – who are not afraid of Mexicans, not afraid of Muslims, not afraid of blacks. They’re afraid of their insurance premiums.”

He went on to criticise liberals’ double standards, whereby they both hold the idea that it’s “ignorance” to think minority communities could be defined as a “monolith” whole and not as individuals, while still believing “everyone who voted for Trump is a monolith, is a racist. That hypocrisy is all real in this country.”

“This is the fight that we wage against ourselves and each other, because America is not natural,” Stewart finished. “Natural is tribal. We're fighting against thousands of years of human behaviour and history to create something that no one's ever- that's what's exceptional about America. And this ain't easy.”

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