Jimmy Kimmel is somehow considered a moral barometer on late-night television, which seems funny because, well, I’ve seen his show.
He’s used 5th graders to make political points. His reaction to the rumor that President Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner was being considered to take over the role of White House chief of staff was that “I guess the thinking is, if he’s good enough to screw my daughter, he’s good enough to screw the country.” He tried to make homophobic jokes about Sean Hannity engaging in grotesque sex acts on the president, and later issued an apology saying he would “give more thought and recognize my role in inciting hatefulness” without actually apologizing to Hannity.
Apparently, you can cry a few times on TV about the right things and you can pretty much get away with whatever you want. That was on display earlier this week, when Kimmel’s disagreement with the administration’s immigration policies led him to suggest that it might be time to put the president’s kids in cages.
The monologue routine came after the resignation of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who oversaw the controversial policy of separating children from families who brought their children illegally over the border. You know, as per the Flores settlement, which mandated that children could only be kept in detention with their families for a period of 20 days.
So, time for an inappropriate joke involving an alleged child molester!
“At this point,” Kimmel began, “Donald Trump has taken more kids away from their parents than Michael Jackson.”
That drew a sound resembling something between astonishment and a boo, which meant Kimmel quickly ushered the audience toward Trump’s own words regarding the policy.
“I’m the one that stopped it. President Obama had child separation,” the president said. “I’ll tell you something: Once you don’t have it, that’s why you see many more people coming. They’re coming like it’s a picnic, because ‘Let’s go to Disneyland.’”
“A laugh a minute,” said the late-night host that just compared Trump to a pop star who supposedly groomed children for his own untoward purposes. But I digress. Continue, lachrymose moralizer!
“Just to recap: Obama did the separations, and they were a good thing, but you stopped it. That makes sense,” Kimmel said.
“You know, if Trump really wants to put kids in cages, he should start with Eric and Donald Junior, just to see how it goes.”
That got cheers, because, you know, this is the left’s moral compass nowadays.
Just to be clear: Kids aren’t in cages. Whether kids were ever really in cages for an extended period of time is a matter of controversy, but the genesis of this whole line of thought — a 2014 photo in which children who had crossed the border illegal were kept for processing and kept in holding pens made out of chain-link fencing — was wholly an Obama thing, though it went viral on social media as being the result of the Trump administration’s zero tolerance policy on illegal immigration.
Kimmel’s line of thinking is this: He acknowledges “children in cages” was an Obama thing, Trump says he likes it (this is pretty much the exact opposite of what the president said, but OK), which means we should put Trump’s adult children in the cages.
At least he didn’t say Barron, but that’s really the extent of what we can give Kimmel credit for.
This is what counts as “tolerance” in 2019. Kimmel acknowledges that family separation happened under Obama, attributes it to Trump and then makes a bunch of tasteless jokes about it. If only he had cried, we’d have had the full Jimmy Kimmel experience. Come on, Jimmy — give those tear ducts a workout.
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