On Thursday night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart revisited the annual Fox News counterattack in the War on Christmas. But since the last time he talked about this epic battle — last week — things have gotten even stranger. Stewart started out by noting Fox host Gretchen Carlson's declaration of a war of her own — against the Seinfeld-inspired holiday Festivus — and then turned to the topic that no doubt inspired the whole segment: Megyn Kelly's unequivocal assertion that, like Jesus, Santa Claus is a white man.
Stewart's reaction was about what you'd expect: Incredulity followed by a bit of debunking and then a pointed question: What sophisticated-yet-naive-yet-racist children is Kelly talking to here? The statement, by one of Kelly's guests, that "you can't take facts and try to make them fit some sort of a political agenda, or some sort of sensitivity agenda," was too much for Stewart, coming from a Fox News pundit. "There's so much crazy going on here," he said.
Stewart then turned the show over to Senior Christmas Historical Accuracy Correspondent Jessica Williams to talk about why Santa can't be black, even though historically the inspiration for the jolly man in red was a swarthy bishop in modern-day Turkey. Of course Santa has to be white, just like rock 'n' roll had to be from Elvis, not Little Richard, Williams said.
That's how cultural appropriation works, she explained, before getting a bit personal. "Sorry, Santa's not black just because some blogger wishes he was, just like Megyn's not black just because she spells her name creatively." Besides, she added, if Santa were a black man, there'd be less "ho ho ho" when he came down the chimney with his sack and more "stand your ground" gun-violence cases.
Stewart followed up the War on Christmas stuff with comedian Lewis Black and his recurring "Back in Black" grudge match against the news. On Thursday night, Black complained about how the future he was promised as a kid hasn't lived up to America's 1950s imagination. Instead of flying cars and ubiquitous jet packs we have twerking robots and other useless technology. Black did find one new piece of technology he might have a use for, though. Watch:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why is the Pentagon stuffing caves in Norway full of tanks?
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- The one thing the New Atheists get right about religion
- The U.S. government is actually trouncing Ebola. When will it get credit?
- Syrian women know how to defeat ISIS
- Gamergate has backfired spectacularly on its nincompoop perpetrators
- 3 horrific inaccuracies in Homeland's depiction of Islamabad
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- Why America needs more billionaires
Subscribe to the Week