At some point in 2011 Jenn recommended we check out The Daily Show with Jon Stewart on Comedy Central. The only thing I knew about Jon Stewart at the time was that he had an acting role in the Adam Sandler movie, Big Daddy. Probably not something he wants to be remembered for. After the first episode of The Daily Show we were hooked. It became a nightly ritual. A staple in our home. He challenged a lot of what we believed at the time. Gay marriage, abortion, racial equality, veterans health care, welfare, the war, the financial crisis, and the modern 24/7 news outlets. The list goes on and on.
To think that as of today he will no longer be on the air hurts. Although it hurt when Stephen Colbert stopped doing the Colbert Report, Jon Stewart leaving The Daily Show is a different level of hurt. It's like losing a best friend. His twenty minute shows four days a week were impactful. They brought the news in a way that was both entertaining and honest. He didn't shy away from hard subjects. There were times that we would end an episode of his show and have laughed and cried in the same episode.
I didn't always agree with Jon Stewart. I'm sure many reading this post will only be able to relate to that last sentence. And yet even when I disagreed, I loved his approach. Life's funny and why not make fun of how crazy our world is. For all the times I disagreed, I appreciated that I was being challenged. That I wasn't having someone preach to me ideals I already believed but that I was being told things that were from a perspective I'd naturally never have seen things from. It's made me far more skeptical on all news outlets (not just Fox). It's made me challenge what all politicians say.
After watching Jon Stewart for nearly five years I feel like I'm a more informed and well rounded individual. I'm going to miss sitting down for a meal with Jenn next to me and having an entertaining twenty minutes of news and comedy. In my opinion he is the most influential newsman of our generation. I can't think of anyone that's even close. He is able to connect with my generation in a way that no other person has been able to do. He also brought up via his correspondents some of the best comedians of our generation (John Oliver, Stephen Colbert, Samantha Bee, Steve Carrell, Ed Helms, Jason Jones, etc etc etc). And for that I thank you Jon Stewart. I thank you for being a voice of reason in the chaos. You will be missed. The Szerlip household will not be the same without you.