If you haven’t been watching The Daily Show’s series on gun control, please do yourself a favor and catch up with the trio of videos below. Last night the final segment aired, wrapping up what has proven to be the most compelling news coverage on the topic since the United States Senate killed a modest bill that simply would’ve expanded background checks on gun buyers. John Oliver, who will step into the hosting chair while Jon Stewart directs his first feature film this summer, was nothing short of masterful throughout.
To make the point that new gun legislation can make a marked difference in our country, Oliver traveled to Australia, where, in 1996 conservative Prime Minister John Howard, in response to a mass shooting (there had been 13 such shootings in the prior 18 years), enacted decidedly stricter gun laws. The result: There has been no mass shootings since, gun homicides declined 60 percent and gun suicides have dropped dramatically. The legislation, by the way, passed in three-and-a-half months.
With that in mind, check out the series below. I think you’ll find Oliver’s interactions with Philip Van Cleave — a gun lobbyist representing the Virginia Citizens Defense League — especially satisfying. Enjoy!