Jon Stewart isn’t easily impressed. But on Tuesday, a 16-year-old left this sardonic late-show host speechless.
A year after she was shot by the Taliban for speaking out about girls’ education rights, Malala Yousafzai sat down with Stewart to talk about her views on education and terrorism and how she plans to continue her fight to open up classrooms for girls all over the globe.
Stewart was quick to praise Yousafzai’s new book and express how privileged he felt to meet her. But it was the moment when she talked about how she would react to the terrorist who wanted to take her life that shook him most.
The Nobel Peace Prize nominee said that when she learned she was a target while living in Pakistan, she often thought about how she would react if she found herself face-to-face with a terrorist. At first, she thought she would fight back. But then she realized, she could not stoop to his level.
“If you hit a Talib, then there would be no difference between you and the Talib,” she said. “You must not treat others with cruelty…You must fight others through peace and through dialogue and through education.”
Once she decided she could not respond with violence, Yousafzai thought about what she would say to a terrorist.
“I would tell him how important education is and that I would even want education for your children as well. That’s what I want to tell you,” she envisioned saying, “now do what you want.”
After Stewart collected his thoughts, he made a pretty bold offer.
“I know your father is backstage and he’s very proud of you,” Stewart said. “But would he be mad if I adopted you?”
We were kind of thinking the same thing.
We can't all adopt Malala, but we can support her fight for global education at the Malala Fund.