Before signing off for 2019, Hasan Minhaj has turned his eye towards 2020.
The host of Netflix’s Patriot Act ended his final episode of the year by sharing some updates from stories he covered earlier in the year, including an interview during which he tried to get Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to accept Islam as his “one true faith.” Two weeks later, his brownface scandal erupted. “Little did I know he had actually converted decades ago,” Minhaj joked.
The biggest problem of 2019, he went on to argue, is that “we’re exposed to all the news, all the time, which makes us feel like we have to care about everything all the time.” It’s called “compassion fatigue” and Minhaj compared it to feeling like you have “50 tabs open in our mental browsers and we’re about to crash.”
“You know who really figured out 2019?” he asked, before adding, “You’re not going to like this.” He was talking about Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. “We’ve shat on Mitch McConnell all year. ‘He’s a goblin, he’s a skin tag with glasses, he looks like something from a wax museum dumpster.’ He doesn’t give a fuck.”
To extend Minhaj’s analogy, McConnell “closed all tabs, except for the Republican Party and locking down the courts.” And he thinks those on the other side of the political divide should do the same.
“So here’s what I’m pitching,” he continued. “For 2020, give yourself a break. Just pick a couple things to not care about, for your sanity. I’m not saying shut down your browser. Just close a couple tabs.”
For himself, Minhaj has decided to let other people worry about plastic straws, North Korea and brownface. “I know, that’s supposed to be my issue,” he said. “But I’ve got other tabs to focus on. So if someone comes up to me and is like, ‘Did you hear? Joe Biden dressed up as Apu for Halloween!’ I’d be like, ‘Yo, I bet the accent was funny.’”
Minhaj acknowledged that it was “weird” to hear this advice from a host—much like his fellow Daily Show alum John Oliver—who “tells you to care about something new every week.” And he promised to keep doing so in 2020, something that was an open question before Patriot Act aired the 32nd episode of its initial 32-episode order this past week.
“I’ll see you guys in 2020,” he concluded. “We’ve got a few more tabs to open.”
For more, listen to the most recent episodes of The Last Laugh podcast.