Comedian Jon Stewart lamented the apparent lack of support from everyday Americans at a Memorial Day veterans event in Washington DC
the old Daily show the host called out the lack of attendees who weren’t associated with veterans’ organizations and family members during a fiery speech at the Rolling to Remember event on Saturday.
According to its website, Rolling to Remember is a motorcycle race held in Washington D.C. over Memorial Day weekend to raise awareness of veteran suicides, prisoners of war, and the estimated 82,000 service members still in service. missing.
Addressing the small crowd, Stewart, who was flanked by veterans‘ advocates, said: “People sitting behind me, it’s hard not to be here today and not be frustrated at new. Because when I look out into the crowd, I see the same thing that I always see – the veterans, their families and their caregivers. But where are the Americans?”
He continued to object to superficial support from people who simply shared sympathetic messages online or discount offers without addressing the broader issues facing the veteran community.
Stewart added, “This Memorial Day weekend. Man, you’re gonna read the tweets this weekend. You’re gonna look at the Facebook pages and you’re gonna be like, ‘Oh, does America love me? . Boy, they love us.
“You’re going to Applebee’s. They’re going to give you ribs. Probably 20%; not even 10% because of their support.
“And yet, we come here today looking for the support of the American people, and what do we have behind me? These are veterans organizations. These are veterans. These are their families. This country can’t be this broken. If we can’t make simple shit, we’ve got nothing.”
Stewart then lashed out at congressional inaction to help sick veterans who claim to have been exposed to toxic materials, such as Agent Orange.
A bill, dubbed the Sergeant First Class Health Robinson Honoring our PACT of 2022, offers bipartisan support to help veterans who have been exposed to toxic materials.
The legislation is now expected to come to the Senate in June.
Senate Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Jon Tester (D-MT) and ranking member Jerry Moran (R-KS) said in a May 24 joint statement, “This is a big step forward. to show all Americans the Senate’s plans to deliver veterans exposed to toxic substances. and their families the comprehensive health care and benefits they have won for the first time in the history of this country. »
“As leaders of the Veterans Senate [VA] Committee, we have worked tirelessly with our colleagues on both sides of the aisle to ensure that this legislation expands VA health care eligibility for post-9/11 veterans, improves the processing of VA claims, and provides VA the resources to take care of our veterans. of each generation.
“While our work is far from done, we are committed together to uphold our end of the bargain towards those who have sacrificed in the name of our freedoms by getting this bill across the finish line as soon as possible. “
If passed, the legislation would expand health care eligibility to more than 3.5 million veterans exposed to toxic substances and strengthen federal research into toxic substance exposure among several other provisions, according to the Press release.
It also states that “Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson deployed to Kosovo and Iraq with the Ohio National Guard. He died in 2020 from toxic exposure as a result of his military service.”
Newsweek contacted Rolling to Remember for comment.