Why Jon Stewart Is Criticizing The Media's Portrayal Of Donald Trump

For 16 years, Jon Stewart was the hilarious, acerbic, and biting face of news and new coverage. From 1999 to 2015, he hosted Comedy Central's "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart," a satirical take on the news of the day and news programming. He came to prominence during a unique time in the media, as all-day cable news became dominant and America became a country of "all news, all the time" — consumers no longer looked to morning papers and evening local news, but rather cable shows and social media for their information (via Biography). Since leaving "The Daily Show" behind just one year before Donald Trump became president, Stewart has remained relatively quiet about the state of the country and the world, as well as the state of media and how it covered Trump's ascendancy to the White House and his time in it.

However, Stewart made his television comeback on September 30, 2021, with the Apple TV + new show, "The Problem With Jon Stewart." Being back in the spotlight has led Stewart to speak out against both the current state of the world and the media's part in it.

Jon Stewart doesn't think Donald Trump is the villain the media makes him out to be

When speaking with Jake Tapper on CNN's "State of the Union" on October 17, 2021, Jon Stewart spoke about weak points within government institutions that help guardrail American democracy. When Tapper mentioned that Donald Trump has also identified those weak points and is using them to endorse candidates who still insist the 2020 election was rigged, Stewart said that Trump is a symptom of something larger within the American system.

"I think we make a mistake focusing this all on Donald Trump as though he's [comic book character] Magneto and some incredible super villain that has changed the very nature and temperature of the United States," Stewart told Tapper. "He's just been an effective vessel, but again like, he's not singing new songs. He's maybe singing them a little better than [Barry] Goldwater, but I think it's a mistake to focus it all on this one individual and not to focus it more on the idea that power is its own reward." 

Stewart went on to say that solely focusing on Trump as the sole villain is an unhealthy approach, and that doing so "comes at the price" of established government institutions and ongoings that have stood the test of time. Suffice to say, it's great to have Stewart back on the scene once again.