Even if Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. observed that "the moral arc of the universe bends toward justice," Daily Show host Jon Stewart said on Thursday, lawmakers in "meth labs of democracy" like Arizona, Kansas, and Missouri appear to be determined to reverse that trajectory.
Kansas earned itself two rounds of mockery, as Stewart first poked fun on the Democrat-sponsored bill allowing parents and teachers to spank their children so hard they leave bruises.
"Chew on that for a little bit," Stewart mused to the audience. "'My name is [bill sponsor] Representative Gail Finney. Are you holding back from punching the sh*t out of your children because you fear legal repercussions? Well fear no more. Your nightmare is over. Whereas theirs is just beginning."
Stewart also noted that, while supporting the bill, MSNBC hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski reminisced warmly about being spanked by their parents -- an awkward moment, given that Brzezinski's father, Zbigniew Brzezinski, was a former National Security Advisor.
"I imagine that was a tasty addition to his normally undervisited Wikipedia page," Stewart said of the elder Brzezinski.
But not to be outdone, Stewart said, Sunflower State legislators also proposed a bill legalizing anti-LGBT discrimination, though he did frown on MSNBC attempting to explain the bill's implications with a hypothetical encounter between a gay couple and a supermarket baker.
"You think a gay wedding's gonna have a supermarket cake? That's what you think?" Stewart said. "This couple's been waiting their whole lives for the freedom to marry -- they're not just gonna swing by the Safeway."
Meanwhile, Stewart seemed to not know what to make of Missouri residents expressing support for a bill that would allow parents to stop their children from learning about evolution, with one person saying, "Evolution is not taught in the Bible, so it shouldn't be taught in class."
"The Bible class," Stewart said after a second. "Otherwise you're setting a pretty high hurdle if schools can't teach anything that's not in the Bible."
But even if the Kansas state Senate was able to stop that state's anti-LGBT bill, Stewart did offer a warning to its Arizona counterpart for having no such restraint.
"Careful, Arizona. You turn back history too far, you'll go back to being that weird patch between New Mexico and California that no one wants to talk about," he said. "Which really isn't that big a change, is it?"
Watch Stewart's take on the spate of extremist legislation, as aired on Comedy Central, below.