Jimmy Kimmel has used his late-night platform to call out the hypocrisies and grotesqueness of the right-wing media machine. He has openly challenged the fascist lies of people like Marjorie Taylor Greene. He has attempted to speak to the MAGA crowd and tried to use humor in pointing out the … inconsistencies between Trump’s promises and his actions.
On Wednesday night, Kimmel opened his show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, by speaking without jokes to the audience and addressing GOP leadership and their unwillingness to move out of the way and allow “common sense” gun laws to pass. In the bloody wake of the massacre at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, where 19 children and two teachers were murdered, Kimmel’s powerful monologue to open the show did not go out over Texas’ local ABC affiliate, WFAA. According to them, there were “technical issues,” that “prevented the entirety of Kimmel’s monologue from airing in full.” They have now posted a link to Kimmel’s YouTube channel.
Kimmel went to his Twitter account to point out that he’s been contacted about the strange coincidence that WFAA, which serves enormous markets like Dallas, seemed to have “cut away” from Kimmel’s opening monologue, writing that he wasn’t sure if this happened “intentionally or inadvertently, but [he] will find out.”
Kimmel held back tears as he talked about how we are once again mourning as a nation for “the little boys and girls whose lives have been ended and whose families have been destroyed, while our leaders on the right, the Americans at Congress and at Fox News and these other outlets, warn us not to politicize this.” Kimmel went on to juxtapose how these very same Republicans in the very same breath then criticized President Biden for “even speaking about doing something to stop it.”
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Kimmel rightly points out that the only reason they “don't want to speak about it” is “because they know what they've done and they know what they haven't done, and they know that it's indefensible. So they'd rather sweep this under the rug.” He goes on to remind his audience that the overwhelming majority of Americans, nearly 90% of them regardless of their political affiliations, want universal background checks and other “common sense” gun safety laws. This, Kimmel reminds the audience, is “the very least we can do.”
He references the same bipartisan bill Golden State Warrior’s head coach Steve Kerr railed about Tuesday night, that has been sitting on a shelf in the Senate for over a year because “our cowardly leaders just aren't listening to us they're listening to the NRA they're listening to those people who write them checks who keep them in power.”
Kimmel then detailed how gun laws work and we have proof around the world of elected officials taking action after serious gun violence visited their citizens. He attempts to speak to Sen. Ted Cruz and Gov. Greg Abbott directly, appealing to their humanity (yes, he also recognizes that many of the people viewing are not interested in hearing this kind of appeal), but his point is clear: “It's okay to admit you made a mistake. In fact, it's not just okay—it's necessary to admit you made a mistake when your mistake is killing the children in your state. It takes a big person to do something like that. It takes a brave person to do something like that, and do I think these men are brave people? No, I don't. But, man, I would love it if they surprised me.”
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Kimmel reiterates, as others have, that the “moments of silence” are insufficient right now. “This is time to be loud and stay loud,” he says before emotions overtake him again, wondering aloud how this assault on our children, all of our children, ends with no meaningful action on the part of our “leaders.” Kimmel calls the GOP bluff of “mental health” being the number one factor here, and says we agree that “both” mental health issues in our country and gun issues in our country need mitigating. Let’s work on something, anything, to address both of those things and see if we can make a positive change in the public health and safety of all our children.
He finished by saying we must hold our elected officials accountable. It’s our children’s lives that are literally at stake. “So if you care about this, and we all do, it doesn't matter what party we vote for—we all care about this. We need to make sure that we do everything we can to make sure that, unless they do something drastic ... let's make sure that not one of any of these politicians ever holds office again.”
His show then cut to a reel of Texas politicians, like Abbott and Cruz, making moves to deregulate gun safety measures, juxtaposed with the real-world mass murders that come in their wake.