Stephen Colbert appears to have found his groove at the Late Show. In the video below, he tears apart Donald Trump’s unhinged press conference. While self-loathing progressives and mushy moderates worry that comedians mocking Trump’s flagrant ignorance and evisceration of democratic norms is somehow undermining their farcical, one-sided attempts at generating dialogue with people who defend the indefensible, Colbert is choosing to do his best to offer the intellectual and moral clarity that is needed at this moment in American history. He is behaving like a comedian, citizen, and patriot should—delivering laughs while defending factual reality and the highest American ideals. Instead of criticizing comedians who refuse to intentionally placate or indulge the willful ignorance of many, these critics should look in the mirror and ask themselves if they are doing their part to stand up for American democracy at this moment of maximum peril—or if they are too busy trying to show off their non-partisan or non-ideological “reasonableness” to do their duty.
Not just those who aspire to be good citizens, but those who aspire to be good Christians, should ask this question of themselves. Christianity is either radical or a bourgeois counterfeit. Where others are choosing silence, complacency, or outright complicity, Colbert is rising to the moment. Are you?