Daily Show host Jon Stewart sardonically whooped it up on Tuesday over the conviction of Occupy Wall Street protester Cecily McMillan for assaulting a New York City police officer.
“The arc of the moral universe is long,” Stewart said, before flipping a makeshift scorecard over to show a “tie” between Occupiers and bankers. “But it beds to motherf*cking justice.”
McMillan was among scores of protesters arrested during a May 17, 2012 demonstration, but she faces a seven-year prison term for elbowing Officer Grantley Bovell. McMillan’s attorneys argued that she did so in response to Bovell trying to grab her breast.
Still, Stewart said, it was a long time coming.
“These Occupy Wall Streeters, after victimizing Wall Street job creators — by drumming in their general vecinity, by waggling their fingers in a threatening manner, or by rudely cornering the pepper spray market with their faces — the Occupiers have gotten off scot-free,” Stewart said, before adding sotto voce, “Except for the mass arrests and the previously-mentioned pepper spray.”
Her sentence, Stewart said, means there are now as many Occupiers behind bars as there are Wall Street executives who helped create the financial meltdown that spurred the protests. Late last year, Credit Suisse executive Kareem Serageldin pled guilty to charges of allowing his traders to artificially inflate the value of his company’s securities.
Serageldin received a 30-month sentence for his crimes, but Stewart seemed taken aback that Serageldin pled guilty in the first place.
“Oh, went to jail for stupidity,” Stewart scoffed, before explaining that Serageldin should have followed the “example” set by other firms, who paid relatively small settlements for their own transgressions — ones that allowed the companies to not admit to any wrongdoing.
“You say, when you’re caught, ‘While I clearly have done nothing wrong, I know you’re a busy man and your time is valuable, so here’s a little something for your troubles, know what I mean? Get the government’s wife something nice, maybe a tennis bracelet,” Stewart said.
“Financial Victims Unit” correspondent Samantha Bee, however, questioned Stewart’s reasoning, arguing that bankers were still struggling with “post-traumatic inconvenience disorder” after the protests.
“Wasn’t this about the 99 percent against the 1 percent?” Bee asked Stewart. “That means that one banker is worth 99 protesters. And by my count, that puts us 98 convicted hippies short of true justice.”
Watch the entire episode posted online by Hulu: