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Jon Stewart Signs Off

Remembering The Daily Show host's takes on animal welfare

All Animals magazine, July/August 2015

by Karen E. Lange

Photo by AP Photo/Brad Barket

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart started as comedy in 1999 and continued for 15 years as a satire of current events, even as it became a main source of news for a growing number of viewers. Stewart covered issues HSUS members care about—including farm animal welfare, the treatment of captive elephants and orcas, and the ivory trade. His final show is scheduled for Aug. 6 on Comedy Central, but his animal advocacy will continue. Stewart and his wife, Tracey, bought a New Jersey property where they plan to take in rescued farm animals. Here are a few of Stewart’s not-so-serious takes on animal welfare.

Interview with John Hargrove, former SeaWorld trainer

“At what point do you think to yourself, ‘Oh, this is a sentient creature and what I’m doing isn’t right’? … Even going there you rationalize. While you’re [at SeaWorld] you say, ‘That’s a pretty good size swimming pool.’ Not for a whale [though]. Is it possible to have this kind of thing in a humane way, or are we kidding ourselves?” —March 26, 2015

Segment on McDonald’s announcing it will no longer use chickens raised with antibiotics

“Chicken without antibiotics? Well, now I’m conflicted. I want healthier food. But I’ll miss treating my ear infections with the Buffalo Ranch McChicken.” —March 17, 2015

Segment on proposed New Jersey law to ban gestation crates for breeding pigs

“It’s easier to keep them in these tiny confined boxes—like shoes that can feel pain. … What’s so great about extending your limbs, anyway?” —Nov. 19, 2014

Interview with Gene Bauer, Farm Sanctuary

“It’s harder to eat meat when you know the animal’s name.” —April 6, 2015

Segment on ivory trade

“Our insatiable hunger for ivory trinkets is having a catastrophic impact on the ivory’s original owners. … Either we as humans can decrease our consumption of ivory by no longer buying trinkets we don’t even need, or elephants can change this two-year gestation thing and start shooting out pups like a T-shirt cannon. … Clearly, we’re not going to save elephants because it’s the right thing to do.” —Nov. 12, 2014

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