It seems that no matter what comedian John Oliver discusses on Sunday night's Last Week Tonight, it makes headlines on Monday morning. And, well, today is no different. Oliver tackled the heavy subject of the Oregon shooting on Sunday night's episode, specifically the conversation that typically follows: mental illness and gun control. To him, however, it seems that talk of the former is significantly trumping the latter.
Kicking the segment off by delivering a jab at Hollywood's take on mental illness – that it's really just a thing for actors to try out in order to earn themselves Academy Awards – Oliver further noted that it's a "touchy topic," one that many people are not discussing correctly. And it seems timing is our biggest enemy.
"Perhaps the clearest sign of just how little we want to talk about mental health," Oliver said, "is that one of the only times it's actively brought up is, as we've seen yet again this week, in the aftermath of the mass shooting as a means of steering the conversation away from gun control."
Oliver further showed clips of several Republican candidates discussing the serious issue of mental health in the United States, noting, "It seems there is nothing like a mass shooting to suddenly spark political interest in mental health."
Moreover, the former Daily Show correspondent championed the idea that talking about mental health right after a mass shooting is perhaps the worst time to do so, as it's on record that most people who suffer from mental illness do not commit murders, and "fewer than 5% of the 120,000 gun-related killings ... were perpetrated by people diagnosed with mental illness."
So, folks, what should we really be talking about: gun violence and control or mental illness?
A photo posted by Last Week Tonight (@lastweektonight) on Sep 8, 2015 at 7:18am PDT
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