Stephen Colbert can use comedy to make a point like few can. On last night’s Late Show, he did just that.
Colbert started off by referring to recent webcasts made by Pope Francis talking about the development of science and corruption for the TED organization. Colbert starts with the Pope’s thoughts on people’s relationship with science:
“How wonderful it would be if the growth of scientific and technological innovation would come along with more equality and social inclusion”
The camera then goes back to Colbert who is distracted blocking “jerks who disagree with him” on his phone. Of course, the crowd laughs. Underneath the joke, however, Colbert makes a great point about the fact that there are such great advances in science and technology. While this is happening, unfortunately, most of us are too caught up in our own business and protecting our ‘bubble” to even notice. People complain about injustice in ineffective and small ways (like worrying about if someone is disagreeing with you on a facebook thread that might be seen by a dozen people) while the tools of getting great messages out are at our disposal.
Colbert then moves to the second quote. A quote about corruption. This one is just spot-on:
“Power is like drinking gin on an empty stomach. You feel dizzy, you get drunk, you lose your balance – And you will end up hurting yourself and those around you.”
Sound familiar. Pretty much anyone of any political persuasion can see that. Of course, we tend to see it in the folks on the other side of the political spectrum more than our own. The fact is, though, is that no ideology or political leaning has a monopoly on corruption. It is the power that corrupts, not a particular viewpoint.
The best comedy of the segment was yet to come, though. Colbert then introduced another TED talk from a famous religious icon — Jesus. This part of the segment really doesn’t have much of a statement to make, it is just plain funny. “JesusOfNazereth” runs through three famous Bible “concepts” and puts them into a typical TED format. He starts with the parable of feeding the masses when they only have a couple of loaves of bread and a few fish. “Jesus” asks the rhetorical question “geez me?” and then follows with “no, JesUS.”
He then moves to the scenario of someone “slapping our cheek” and the natural reaction of hitting them back. Check out the new “pilot program” they are testing as an alternative in the video below.
After speaking for so long, he takes a drink of water. Or is it water? Again, Jesus has the answers in the video below. Take a break and enjoy it — you’ll be glad you did:
Featured image via screen capture from youtube.com