Last night a familiar (if scruffier) face loomed over Trevor Noah’s left shoulder about nine minutes into The Daily Show. It was Jon Stewart, there to make a triumphant return and to bring national attention to an issue he cares about: The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which guarantees health care for 9/11 first responders who are suffering from illnesses due to unsafe conditions at the scene.
At first, Noah was worried. “I’ve heard about this in American TV—are you taking the show back?” “A thousand times no,” Stewart reassured him, and went on to explain exactly why he was there: “I have this issue and I want to get some attention paid to it, but I realized that I don’t have a show, and nobody gives a shit anymore.”
Stewart’s wants Congress to renew the Zadroga act, which pledged $4.3 billion for medical care and monitoring of the policemen, firemen, and other first responders. The act passed in 2010, but portions of it expired Sept. 30, and the rest will expire next October. “What message does it send to our first responders if, once we’re done as a nation with them helping us, we forget about them?” Stewart asked. Then, in a delightful video segment, he marches on Washington to shame senators into supporting the bill.