Amazing Jon Stewart on guns (video)

This is is one of the best Jon Stewart clips I’ve seen. It’s about our national fetish with guns and gun violence.

“When that Constitution was written, people had muskets. So, okay, you can have all the muskets you want. You can even have assault muskets for all I care. Jazz it up with a bayonet. Go f’g nuts.”


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • Jimmy Lin

    Saying hammer and cars killed more people than guns is funny.

    I am pretty sure Hammer and Cars happen to be also capable of killing people, but its main purpose is not to kill. Guns on the other hand is designed to kill as its main purpose.

    However, lets grant the gun nuts that one to demonstrate a point.

    Lets replace a hammer with a baseball bat, same result, blunt object can kills.
    Lets replace cars with a giant boulder rolling down the street, same result, a large heavy object traveling beyond a certain velocity can kill.
    So what should we replace guns with to achieve the same result that isn’t another gun? The point of a gun is to launch a projectile using gun powder explosion to cause damage to living tissues.

    That is why the argument of number of death via non-weapon object used as weapons or by accident is so disingenuous. I have no problem with people want to own guns, but I would rather they give good arguments as to why we should not have at least basic laws to regulate it properly.

    Background check for all sales? Nope. Close loopholes certain gun show sales? Nope. Mental health assessments for gun owners? Nope. Crack down on illegal guns by making sure legal guns don’t become illegal? Nope.

    The only thing the NRA seem to agree on is straw purchases, but the problem is how do you crack down on straw purchases without expanded background checks? Also, straw purchases doesn’t apply to “lost” guns, and the NRA isn’t into that either apparently.

  • Jimmy Lin

    You are black, but are you a President? You are the one using the race card if you think the fact you being black has something to do with Obama being black.

    Cause we all know all black man are the same am I right?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Derek-Yisrael/100003269252605 Derek Yisrael

    I’m black and neither like his socialized or political agends either and question if he’s truly an american citizen. Does that make me racist? Kinda throws the whole “race card” out the window huh?

    Here’s a little hint: Whites are not the only ones who do not like him. All blacks don’t support him just because he’s black like many uneducated do

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Derek-Yisrael/100003269252605 Derek Yisrael

    Are you speaking from a theological standpoint or your personal interpretation or opinion. I have a right from God, that interestingly enough the Founding Fathers thought important enough to put into those documents and even in the Bill of Rights to say the word, as much as this may bother you and others “God”. Yes, they said “God” and inalienable right to self preservation. And this is evidenced in the bible as well.

    I could care less what Jon Stewart is saying. He is no moral or ethical or religious proponent. He is nothing more than any other media person, entertainer, or athelete who takes money from corporations with alterior motives.

    There is no abstract of fear but reality and if YOU have not read a history book, you may want to start. This country is no moral pillar above doing the same attrocities of a tyranical govt that have been done before. So looking to the future, I think not.

    If you don’t learn from the past – you are doomed to repeat it. I reject your liberalized jargon and I will protect my family and self and I have that right and will keep it.

    Just FYI, You lay your life down for Jesus Christ and others in spreading the Gospel.
    You do not lay your life down to an evil man with an evil intent of harm towards you or your family. Please get some kind of theological basis before replying to someones comment. Your comment sounds like passionate ignorant jargon with to facts to back it – just your opinion

  • ???

    Banning assault weapons will help–if even at all, its worth it. I would gladly trade one person’s life for a million people’s fulfillment of a desire for owning a weapon.

    Can people not see that fear (to give up guns) and material desire (to own guns) have been winning over courage (to give up guns) and compassion (to prevent and/or discourage murder)???

  • Ummm

    Again, the fundamentals of logic are lost on you, Gekk.

  • Ummm

    Also, most “rewording” is wrong. Also, most people reading the “rewording” aren’t tuning in to universal truths, but superficial and conventional points about culture based ethics.

    The Bible is about loving God and loving all people as God. You don’t need guns to do either of those things :/

  • Gee

    Self-preservation? God says self-preservation is the least of your concerns. How about opening your heart and feeling for the tens of thousands of people killed each year by guns, or clearing your head and thinking about the fact that over half of all homicides are gun related.

    How many times has the average person been “preserved” because he/she had a gun to protect herself, let alone from the government?

    This is what Jon is saying–your abstract fears about a potential future are somehow, in your mind, more important than the concrete facts about actual death, sorrow and loss in the present.

    !!!!

  • Umm

    Interesting, um, logic? He’s not deciding you can’t have guns, also he’s not saying “rights can’t cover advances in technology”–he’s saying the original gun laws were for a different, more rational purpose. Today, gun advocacy does not have a rational cause. People (like you?) get emotionally reactive about the issue, instead of using your intellect calmly–and your heart–to see the actual, well documented danger unregulated gun distribution causes.

    But don’t get me wrong, you’re irrelevant joke about quills was very clever.

  • Naja pallida

    Woooooooooooooooooooosh.

  • Gekk

    “When that Constitution was written, people had muskets. So, okay, you
    can have all the muskets you want. You can even have assault muskets for
    all I care. Jazz it up with a bayonet. Go f’g nuts.”

    When the Constitution was written people had quill pens and hand presses.

    So if you want to decide I can’t have a gun; you can express that opinion with all the hand-written or hand-press copied notes you want.

    Jazz it up with delivery by horseback instead of on foot if you want… go f-ing nuts.

    But don’t sit ON TV or ON THE INTERNET saying rights can’t cover advances in technology… you look not just like a hypocrite; but like a clueless hypocrite.

  • Gekk

    Then you shouldn’t post that opinion on the INTERNET or watch VIDEOS.

    You should restrict your free speech and free expression to HAND PRINTED FLIERS YOU DISTRIBUTE ON THE STREET CORNER. That is your only first Amendment protected expression after all, isn’t it?

    I mean you’re on restricting rights based on the technology of the time after all.

    I’ll await your handwritten hand-delivered response with great anticipation.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Derek-Yisrael/100003269252605 Derek Yisrael

    An interesting thing people who are opponents of people owning handguns for personal protection and cite that the 2nd amendment is only for “regulated militia” is the fact that there are many writings from the forefathers on personal gun ownership for self preservation. There is a fundamental God given right, yeah I said God, that the forefathers acknowledged and respected, that man had a God given right to self-preservation. Interestingly enough, George Washington also cites protection against ones own government becoming tyranical. Now how does one say that the 2nd amendment is “antiquated”?
    The forefathers knew that a day like today would come, and that is why their writings are not antiquated but written for the protection of future generations. Some would even rationalize that when the forefathers mentioned God that they really didn’t mean it. It is truly amazing

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alan-Alexander/502988241 Alan Alexander

    No, that is a valid point. The drug trade drives a lot of gun trafficking, since people who make a living from drug sales typically want guns to protect themselves from rival gangs. Eliminating the drug trade (which is only profitable because of the black market) would help to reduce gun trafficking and violent crime in the inner cities. That doesn’t mean we can’t also do other things like ban certain kinds of extremely dangerous weapons and/or make reforms to mental health care.

  • boyo

    Great answer, we can regulate toys but not weapons. Thanks for explaining the second ammendment with clarity. I hate people posting their right to bear arms is a right in the constitution…it is not a undesignated right or free for all like people think. People think its a one liner 2nd ammendment right to bear arms period, but it wasn’t written for that purpose. I am with jefferson the constitution need rewritten every few years, everything has changed in the world why can’t it?

  • Alex

    I love how this bible belt/red state paranoia only started to show its ugly head right before and after we got a president who happens to look black.

    People have always stuck to their guns, but not so unabashedly paranoid as now.

  • Naja pallida

    This is true… reworded many times, by many different people. Around the world, there’s at least 20 different versions of the BIble currently in use, and none of them are as it was originally written. Not to mention that whole Council of Nicea thing that basically threw out any parts of the Bible they didn’t agree with at the time – whether they were in use by Christian groups or not. Then the extra books written by people for their own sects…

  • Andrew

    The Bible has already been reworded to label things differently than how it was originally written.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Oh please, what nonsense.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Justices Scalia and Thomas come to mind.

  • Naja pallida

    I do. Why shouldn’t we be talking about why we’re still trying to interpret something that was written 200 years ago, instead of rewriting it to clarify it and make it more sensible for the existing real world? It isn’t the Bible. It was always supposed to be continuously updated as needed. Thomas Jefferson would laugh in our faces if he knew we were still bumbling around trying to figure out their intent, without ever even making an attempt at a serious discussion of how we should be trying to clarify the disambiguations instead.

  • David Weafer

    That’s not the reasoning. It’s that the Second Amendment specifically states the purpose and scope being “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state”. If the argument is that they intended for unregulated use, that’s undermined by the founding fathers passing laws which banned many individuals from owning guns at all, restricting the types of guns available, and even requiring by law some people to carry guns in the name of civil, state controlled and regulated, defense. The types of weapons and their uses we have available now, are outside the intended scope of constitutional protection.

    As Jon pointed out, no one actually believes in a completely unregulated right (except may Wayne LaPierre and Alex Jones). We restrict many types of arms and have in the past constitutionally restricted certain types of weapons and ammo. We’ve passed safety regulations binding on gun makers.

    Also slippery slopes are always bad arguments. If we extend voting rights and limits on search and seizures beyond the intended scope, what’s the stop us from extending government right to quarter troops in homes? The answer is common sense and reason. We can determine which rights should be promoted and expanded, and which not. It’s why Jefferson wanted us to rewrite the constitution every few years, not be slaves to the ideas of flawed men.

    It’s not a constitutional or practical issue, it’s a political climate where Republicans consider moderatism a fatal disease (infected victims usually dying in the primaries), while Democrats lack the political will to challenge them. We could easily restrict sales of certain types of advanced assault weapons, or fund mental health initiatives. It’s far less regulatory than efforts spent keeping telecoms from facing competition, or the subsidies paid to agribusiness and Wall Street.

    I’ve had no greater freedom taken away when stopped from buying cop-killer bullets and high-clip full auto assault weapons, than I do when I can’t buy a Kinder Egg. But as a culture we’re fine with stopping some kids from dying by banning chocolates with toys they could choke on inside, but not banning weapons which have no functional purpose other than illegal mass murder.

  • perljammer

    Really? When the Constitution was written, the only thing we had was X, so no Constitutional protections apply to anything other than X? You sure you want to go down that road?

  • jacbi

    so if even 1% of gun deaths in this country is from assault weapons, that is YOUR EXCUSE to do NOTHING? what a pathetic reply.

  • guest1

    Most gun violence is from handguns and gang related, so banning assault like weapons wont help, legalizing drugs will stop most gang crime, so it’s really more of a drug issue…..and Hollywood for glorifying guns lol.

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