One of the cringeworthiest news days we've had since, well, a few days earlier came this week when Press Secretary Sean Spicer made one of his biggest blunders yet as the White House press secretary. So naturally, it's a topic that many late night hosts want to talk about. John Oliver tackled Sean Spicer's Hitler comments on Last Week Tonight and helped him out with a couple of suggested followup statements to his followup statements.
Spicer had the simple task of explaining to the White House press corps that the reason President Donald Trump decided to go through with launching an airstrike on Syria was because Syrian president Bashar al-Assad had launched a chemical attack on his own people. For reasons that aren't totally clear, he decided to draw a comparison to Adolf Hitler, which was 1) unnecessary, 2) bizarre, and 3) almost guaranteed to be inappropriate, especially given its timing during Passover week. It was a gaffe waiting to happen and Spicer (unfortunately) delivered. In trying to illustrate how heinous Assad's crimes were, Spicer tried to claim that "not even Hitler" used chemical weapons.
"Everybody knows mass chemical extermination was kind of Hitler's thing," Oliver was mind-numbingly forced to point out. "That, and the mustache. You take them away and all you've got is an ill-tempered Austrian with resting b*tch face."
A woman in the press corps tried to give Spicer a chance to clarify his statements, given, you know, the existence of gas chambers, but Spicer only dug himself into a deeper hole by referring to concentration camps as never-before-heard-of "Holocaust centers" and drawing the distinction that Hitler never used sarin gas to attack "his own people" (when, in fact, German Jews were still German and therefore, absolutely his people).
"At no point during that was he in control of his own mouth," Oliver joked. "Most specifically, the moment he suddenly decided to coin the term 'Holocaust Center,' which sounds like the home arena for an alt-right hockey team."
Spicer, of course, then released a statement saying he wasn't trying to trivialize the nature of the Holocaust, but merely to draw a distinction between Hitler's acts and using airplanes to drop chemical weapons on innocent people. Continued Oliver:
The problem there is, that could imply the victims of the Holocaust were not innocent people, hence, Spicer's hastily released second statement changing 'innocent people' to 'population centers,' a third statement with an extra line saying, 'Any attack on innocent people is reprehensible and inexcusable,' and then a final statement which read, in its entirety, 'Hello. I can't stop making statements. I don't want to make any more statements. Can anybody hear me? Hitler Hitler Hitler. Sean.'
Honestly, in a contest of which tactic is worse — dropping sarin gas using an airplane or locking people in gas chambers — the answer is neither, but thanks, I guess, to Spicer, for giving us the heinous war crime bracket we didn't know we needed, and, in fact, never wanted.