Jimmy Fallon criticized President Donald Trump on Monday during his introductory monologue as host of NBC’s The Tonight Show, slamming the President for his response to the weekends clashes between Antifa and the alt-right.
Fallon described Trump’s Monday condemnations of white supremacists and the KKK as an acquiescence to public pressure, calling it “shameful” that the president did not make the same statement on either Saturday or Sunday.
Fallon singled out white people as having unique responsibilities in speaking out against racism, imploring his television audience to "speak out against this." He went on to lionize Heather Heyer, the 32-year-old woman who was killed on Saturday in Charlottesville when she was run down by a car driven by James Fields, a participant in the "Unite the Right" rally organized by white nationalists and prominent alt-right figures.
"We can't go backward," said Fallon, seemingly implying that minorities were at risk of being re-subjugated in America after Saturday's events.
Watch Fallon’s comments below:
Below is a partial transcript of Fallon’s comments:
Even though The Tonight Show isn’t a political show, it’s my responsibility to stand up against intolerance and extremism as a human being. What happened over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia was just disgusting. I was watching the news like everyone else, and you’re seeing, like, Nazi flags and torches and white supremacists, and I was sick to my stomach. My daughters were in the next room playing, and I’m thinking, how can I explain to them that there’s so much hatred in this world? They’re two years old and four years old. They don’t know what hate is. They go to playground and they have friends of all races and backgrounds, they just play and they laugh and they have fun.
But as kids grow up, they need people to look up to, to show them what’s right and good. They need parents, and teachers, and they need leaders who appeal to the best in us. The fact that it took the president two days to come out and clearly denounce racists and white supremacists is shameful, and I think he finally spoke out because people everywhere stood up and said something.
It’s important, for everyone, especially white people, to speak out against this. Ignoring it is just as bad as supporting it. And remember there are people who’ve given their lives to make sure that this kind of hate doesn’t spread. They fought and died on the right side of history. One brave woman in Charlottesville, Heather Heyer, died standing up for what’s right at the age of thirty-two.
I can’t look at my beautiful, growing, curious daughters and say nothing when this kinda thing is happening. We all need to stand up against what is wrong, acknowledge that racism exists, and stand up for what is right, and civil, and kind. And to show the next generation that we haven’t forgotten how hard people have fought for human rights. We cannot do this. We cannot go backward. We can’t go backward.
Follow Robert Kraychik on Twitter.