Jon Stewart under fire for displaying 'super-woke' views in moments with Cory Booker, Andrew Sullivan

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Comedian and former “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart is facing increasing scrutiny following multiple instances of displaying “super-woke” views in conversations about race on his Apple TV+ show “The Problem with Jon Stewart.” 

Critics honed in on two March episodes of Stewart’s program, one in which he accused British-American author Andrew Sullivan of appearing racist for criticizing “anti-White extremism,” and another where he was corrected by Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., after claiming “White resentment” led White people to feel upset over legislation aimed at providing financial help to Black farmers.  

Host Jon Stewart performs his intro at the 78th annual Academy Awards in Hollywood, March 5, 2006. REUTERS/Gary Hershorn

Host Jon Stewart performs his intro at the 78th annual Academy Awards in Hollywood, March 5, 2006. REUTERS/Gary Hershorn
(REUTERS/Gary Hershorn)

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The episode involving Stewart’s clash with Sullivan featured a panel of White individuals that included, in addition to Sullivan, La Salle University sociology professor Charles Gallagher and Lisa Bond of Race2Dinner, a far-left organization seeking the “dismantling of whiteness and white supremacy” through dinner conversations with White women.

During the episode, Sullivan asserted that claiming America’s systems and institutions were built on White supremacy was “minimizing actual White supremacy,” and that most Americans didn’t support the viewpoint of the existence of perpetual White supremacy.

He argued because of that, “anti-White extremism” was “losing popular support.”

This led Bond to declare that she didn’t come on the show “to argue with another White man,” and that “every single White person upholds these systems and structures of White supremacy.”

“If I could finger snap, I would finger snap right now,” Stewart said, agreeing with Bond. Sullivan jumped in, arguing that by finger snapping, Stewart would be agreeing with Bond that he was a racist. 

“You’ve been doing a pretty good job with it yourself there,” Stewart said, as the audience laughed.

Andrew Sullivan appears on "The Problem With Jon Stewart," alongside Lisa Bond, Charles Gallagher and Jon Stewart in March 2022. (Screenshot/Apple TV+)

Andrew Sullivan appears on “The Problem With Jon Stewart,” alongside Lisa Bond, Charles Gallagher and Jon Stewart in March 2022. (Screenshot/Apple TV+)
(Screenshot/Apple TV+)

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The clash set off a firestorm of criticism towards Stewart, as well as support for Sullivan.

Indian immigrant and former Vice-Chairwoman of the California Republican Party Harmeet Dhillon appeared on Fox News’ “The Ingraham Angle” to address the incident, accusing Stewart of engaging in “race hucksterism” and “demagoguing White people.”

“It’s not ok for Americans to engage in this racial demagoguery — at the workplace, on television, in reparations legislation, or otherwise. It’s divisive and un-American!” she tweeted following her appearance.

Fox News contributor Lisa Boothe blasted Stewart’s attempt to be funny at Sullivan’s expense.

“If Jon Stewart wants to hate himself because he’s White, go for it. I’m happy to pile on too. He’s not funny and unoriginal. No one should have to apologize or feel guilty because of the color of their skin. We live in a clown world,” she told Fox News digital.

Author and columnist Niall Ferguson tweeted that Stewart was a “bad-faith interviewer” and that a subsequent Substack post written by Sullivan about his experience on the show “confirmed” his view that he “was never a fan” of the left-wing comedian.

Indian immigrant and former Vice-Chair of the California Republican Party Harmeet Dhillon criticized comedian Jon Stewart for engaging in "racial demagoguery" in an April 5, 2022 tweet. (Screenshot/Twitter)

Indian immigrant and former Vice-Chair of the California Republican Party Harmeet Dhillon criticized comedian Jon Stewart for engaging in “racial demagoguery” in an April 5, 2022 tweet. (Screenshot/Twitter)

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In his tweet, Ferguson included a link to Sullivan’s Substack, in which the latter slammed Stewart for the way he was “ambushed” by the conversation and panelists during his appearance on the show.

Sullivan wrote that he was falsely led to believe by the show’s booker that he would be appearing alone with Stewart and that it would be a conversation on race rather than a debate in front of a live studio audience. 

He then detailed how Stewart used his “passionate anti-Whiteness” to paint a narrative that all Black people held the same views and all White people refused to listen to them, as well as that “White supremacy” was the only thing that could explain racial inequality in the present day.

“How painfully, cringingly super-woke must a comedian get to stay relevant?” Sullivan questioned.

In a subsequent episode of his show titled, “Dismantling Racism is Patriotic,” Stewart sat down with Booker for a lengthy conversation on race, but was corrected by the latter after claiming “White resentment” was the cause of a court blocking legislation aimed at providing financial help to Black farmers.

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., appears on "The Problem With Jon Stewart" in March 2022. (Screenshot/Apple TV+)

Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., appears on “The Problem With Jon Stewart” in March 2022. (Screenshot/Apple TV+)
(Screenshot/Apple TV+)

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“It got stopped because of White resentment. White farmers felt like resources were being taken away from them and given to people who didn’t –, ” Stewart claimed before Booker interrupted him.

“No, no … When you say White farmers if I’m a White farmer listening to this in Iowa I’m thinking to myself, ‘Jon Stewart’s calling me – Jon Stewart’s blaming me for stopping Booker’s legislation.’ That’s not true,” Booker said.

Stewart doubled down, arguing that legal challenges to the legislation were coming from a “place of resentment” because somebody of another race would be getting support from the federal government when those who were White wouldn’t.

Critics took to social media to blast Stewart, with some accusing him of “grifting off anti-white hatred,” and others arguing that no farmer of any race was to blame for the nation’s political problems.

“What happened to Jon Stewart?” tweeted British journalist Paul Joseph Watson. “Has he realised grifting off of anti-white hatred is his only way back into the spotlight?”

Writer Ryan James Girdusky criticized comedian Jon Stewart for claiming "White resentment" was to blame for a piece of legislation sponsored by Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., being blocked by a court in an April 4, 2022 tweet. (Screenshot/Twitter)

Writer Ryan James Girdusky criticized comedian Jon Stewart for claiming “White resentment” was to blame for a piece of legislation sponsored by Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., being blocked by a court in an April 4, 2022 tweet. (Screenshot/Twitter)
(Screenshot/Twitter)

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“Do y’all just really hate food or something? Like all the way from South Africa to the US let’s just blame white farmers for everything? Farmers of any race are the one group I can think of who have zero blame for any of our political problems. Purely productive people,” tweeted filmmaker and author Lauren Southern.

“I never I thought I’d be rooting for Cory Booker, but here we are,” tweeted writer Ryan James Girdusky, while radio personality Grace Curley simply wrote, “Good God.”

Fox News’ Hanna Panreck contributed to this report.

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