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Craig Ferguson Skips Late-Night Wars For Haiti, Slams “Dumb, Mean” Rush Limbaugh

How can you joke about Haiti? You can’t — it’s far too sad and awful, and the mere mention of it puts everything else — Conan vs. Jay, Game Change — in perspective as tiny and unimportant. So I have noticed its absence from the late-night shows this past week, though a urging to donation from these people to their audience of millions would have been nice. (Update: Conan O’Brien mentioned the crisis in Haiti last night during the show, and plugged StillerStrong, Ben Stiller’s charity that is redirecting all donations to Haiti.)

Craig Ferguson did more than just mention it last night — he made it the cornerstone of his monologue, and put the late-night wars in perspective by talking about Haiti, urging his audience to donate — and putting Rush Limbaugh in his place while he was at it.

I’m looking at all this trouble in late-night, with Jay over there and Conan over there, and which middle-aged white guys is gonna get X million dollars at what point and I’m thinking to myself….I am getting embarrassed… I’m starting to feel like an AIG executive. So I’m not going to talk about that so much tonight. There’s an actual real news story going on.

Ferguson called the situation in Haiti “horrifying” and “one of the worst natural disasters apparently in recorded history,” and then encouraged his audience to donate: “Give a dollar -whatever you can give.”

But just because you’re getting serious about addressing a terrible catastrophe doesn’t mean you can’t find the comedic gold. Comedy is, let’s recall, often about taking down people who deserve it — and last night, Ferguson was trained on Rush Limbaugh.

Ferguson cited Limbaugh’s appalling comments about Haiti, quoting Rush as saying “We already donated to Haiti – it’s called U.S. income tax. The Obama administration is using this to burnish their credibility with the black community in this country – it’s made to order for them.” Said Ferguson: “That’s a dumb thing to say. A dumb, mean thing to say.” But Ferguson, ever the chipper Scotsman, had a solution:

Here’s a way to take the sting off of that, Rush: A million dollars of your money to the Red Cross, and we’ll say no more of that.

Damn good advice (and it would work for Leno and Tiger Woods, too).

They he urged donations, again, posting Red Cross information and the text donation info (text “HAITI” to 90999 to donate $10): “Let’s do that, and let’s not worry about what middle-aged white guy in a tie is going to be telling jokes to a camera at what time of night, ’cause frankly who gives a [bleep].” Craig Ferguson FTW.


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