There’s nothing so terrible, pernicious, and downright shitty that we (mainly white) Americans can’t make worse by just being us. That’s the pandemic lesson Trevor Noah shared with us on Tuesday’s Daily Show, examining as he did the precipitous and predictable rise of racist violence against Asian people during this already woeful pandemic nightmare. Spurred on repeatedly and with soulless abandon by a former president and his Republican accomplices to the destruction of human decency continually referring to COVID-19 with a region-targeted racial slur, Noah noted that there have been over 3,000 reported anti-Asian hate crime incidents since the pandemic started, with his New York City spiking some 800 percent in that shameful category.
Oh, and in case any of the still-festering MAGA minions out there think that’s just Noah and his pinko, “cancel culture” media pals (hello) getting all sensitive, Noah showed a montage of genuinely hard-to-watch footage of, just to pick the most harrowing example, a 90-year-old Asian man being sucker-shoved violently to the pavement by some fist-pumping young white douchebag. Noting how Hollywood types like Lost and Flack star Daniel Dae Kim and Into The Badlands lead Daniel Wu have been warning people about this rash of dangerous scapegoating by all-American assholes (there’s a $25,000 reward if anyone can ID that Oakland old-man pusher), Noah brought in Daily Show correspondent Ronny Chieng for some additional perspective.
Chieng, after agreeing with Noah’s assessment that, yes, it is good that, speaking remotely as they were, people could see his full-face handsomeness, got down to business. (That’s sort of what Noah said.) Moving on from lower-face attractiveness to some productive ways people who aren’t racist, cowardly, easily-manipulated creeps can help stem this tide of anti-Asian violence, Chieng dutifully promoted some of the organizations working to combat it. Organizations working to do everything from providing escorts for elderly Asians afraid to walk in their own neighborhoods, to reporting the next red-capped, sneering sucker-puncher who attacks the first person they think might be Chinese, to simply educating yourself about how this sort of bigoted bullshit is a shameful national tradition inflamed at times of trouble by evil opportunists stoking the all-too-ready fears and hatred of white America for petty personal gain.
Chieng, after casting a suspicious eye at his boss for Noah’s ignorance of the uses of shrimp paste (c’mon, son), maintained his wonted correspondent’s ironic detachment throughout, including offering up just one piece of constructive criticism for those out there choosing to give vent to their pandemic frustration in decidedly un-constructive ways. “Don’t be a fucking racist asshole who attacks old Asian people!,” Chieng suggested helpfully, continuing, “I mean, what the fuck is wrong with you?! Shoving an old lady isn’t going to make your dick any bigger, okay? Just buy a convertible like everybody else.” Words to live by.