Daily Show host Trevor Noah opened Monday’s show on a somber, heartfelt note, expressing his admiration for the resolve of the French people after the terrorist attack on their nation’s capital on Friday.
“The one thing that made me smile was, people of Paris showed us that the only way to overcome inhumanity is humanity,” Noah said. “They had taxis that turned off their meters to get people home for free; there’s lines and lines of people waiting to donate blood.”
The creation of the hashtag #PorteOuverte, Noah said, encapsulated the compassion shown by Frenchmen toward their compatriots following the assault; people were literally opening their homes to strangers stranded in the city afterward.
The host also admitted to feeling fear, but wanted to shift the focus from the perpetrators, who sought to replace the good moments that define peoples’ lives with memories of death.
“Every attack — whether it’s Paris, Beirut, Kenya — seems less about a specific group and more about an attack on humanity itself,” he said.
Noah offered his prayers to the French people, but not without sneaking one joke in to his tribute.
“I will say you are ruining our cultural stereotypes because the French are supposed to be cold and unwelcoming. And then you go and do these beautiful things,” he said. “Who do we make jokes about now, Finland? Because we will — we will make jokes about Finland if we have to.”
Watch Noah’s commentary, as posted online on Monday, below.