Host Jimmy Kimmel opened last night's episode of his late night show with an emotional plea for gun control, after 59 people were killed and more than 500 were injured in the mass shooting Sunday night in Las Vegas. Holding back tears, Kimmel shared the pain and despair he was feeling for what he described as "a terrible, inexplicably shocking and painful tragedy" in his hometown.
“Fathers without sons, mothers without daughters,” he said. “It’s the kind of thing that makes you want to throw up or give up. It’s too much to even process. All these devastated families who live with this pain forever, because one person managed to collect a stockpile of rifles and use them to shoot people.”
As for his reason why real gun law reform has not yet happened, Kimmel more than implied that President Trump, Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, and other lawmakers are in the pocket of the National Rifle Association, saying the “NRA has their balls in a money clip.”
And on those politicians' "thoughts and prayers" after the attack, he said:
"That's good, they should be praying for God to forgive them for letting the gun lobby run this country."
This is the not the first time Kimmel has used his show as political platform in recent months. Earlier this year he advocated for universal healthcare as a human right in the wake of his son's own brush with the emergency room. Now he is taking on Republicans again, this time on sensible gun control. He disagrees "intensely" with the sentiment that nothing can be done to prevent mass gun violence.
“Of course, there was something we can do about it. There are a lot of things we can do about it. But we don’t. Which is interesting, because when someone with a beard attacks us – we tap phones, we invoke travel bans, we build walls… we take every possible precaution to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
Kimmel wasn't the only late night host to tackle the issue of gun control on their show last night.
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Stephen Colbert also took on the issue of gun control in his monologue:
"The bar is so low right now that Congress could become heroes for doing literally anything. Universal background checks or come up with a better answer. Enforce Obama's executive order that denied mentally ill gun purchases. Or a better answer. Reinstate the assault weapons ban or come up with a better answer. Anything but nothing. Doing nothing is cowardice. Doing something will take courage."
Seth Myers took on Congressional inaction in his opening monologue last night:
"To Congress, I would just like to say, are there no steps we can take as a nation to address gun violence? Because when you say 'now is not the time to talk about it' what you really mean is 'there is never a time to talk about it.' And it would be so much more honest if you would just admit that your plan is to never talk about it and never take any action."
And Trevor Noah struck a similar tone on The Daily Show:
“We’re shocked, we’re sad, thoughts and prayers, and then almost on cue, people are going to come out saying, whatever you do, when speaking about the shooting, don’t talk about guns...
When is the time? And also, if you say after a mass shooting is never the time, then you will never have the conversation in America, because there’s a mass shooting almost every single day. So when is the time?”
"When a plane crashes, we talk about plane safety immediately. When a bridge collapses, we talk about infrastructure immediately. And when a lion attacks people, we talk about why are there so many lions roaming around. Is that just me? Africa..?”