Jimmy Kimmel began his Friday broadcast on a serious note. The late night host discussed the nationwide protests that have erupted in the wake of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, and the way he thinks the president has mishandled the situation.
Floyd was an unarmed black man who was killed while in the custody of the Minneapolis police, and his death sparked outrage across the nation, as well as a string of protests. Those protests began in Minneapolis, and have now spread to more than 30 U.S. cities, according to People.
The host said that, instead of trying to calm tensions, Trump had tweeted out a threat. Kimmel was referring to a tweet from Trump that was eventually flagged by Twitter for violating its policy on the “glorification of violence.” Kimmel continued, saying that the president was openly threatening American citizens.
“Our president is threatening to order the military to shoot Americans, specifically black Americans,” Kimmel said.
The comedian noted that Trump later tried to walk back the original tweet, claiming it had been misinterpreted. Kimmel then continued by addressing his older viewers, those who had seen similar incidents of racial violence in the country’s past. He asked those viewers if Trump was the right person to be leading in this moment.
“Is this who you want leading us? A president who clearly and intentionally inflames violence in the middle of a riot to show how tough he is? A commander in chief who threatens to put members of our military, our national guardsmen and women in the position of having to shoot a fellow American on-sight?” Kimmel asked.
The host then concluded by suggesting that people from across the political spectrum should oppose what the president stands for.
“I don’t care what you are, right, left, Republican, Democrat, something else. Enough is enough. We’ve got to vote this guy out already,” he said.
The late night host also took time to address the cyclical nature of the violence in many of these protests. He said that often, the argument goes from those arguing that it isn’t right to kill an unarmed man to those saying it isn’t right to loot, set fires, or attack the police.
The host said that violence often perpetuates violence, and that the looting and fires were brought on by a senseless act of violence. He said these individual acts of violence keep causing other acts of violence in a never-ending loop.