Jon Stewart On Louis CK: 'Could I Have Done More?'


Jon Stewart appeared on The Today Show this morning promoting the upcoming Night of Too Many Stars, but he also addressed the revelations in the past week about his old friend Louis C.K.

When asked by Today hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie for a reaction, Stewart paused for a moment before saying he was "stunned" and that "you give your friends the benefit of the doubt". Could I have done something more?' In this situation, we all could have. "I have friends that have compulsions and have done things like gambling, drinking, or drugs, and we've lost some of the them". Look, comedy on its best day is not a great environment for women. It's gotten better over the years, but certainly when we started 30 years ago, it was really hard. In a statement released on Friday, C.K. said the stories told to the Times "are true" and that he was "remorseful of my actions".

The New York Times report about Louis C.K. caused a videotaped interaction between Stewart and a University of Chicago student from previous year to resurface.

Stewart called the problem of sexual harassment in his industry "endemic", and said, "You get mad at yourself too, for laughing it off or for thinking, 'That didn't happen'".

So what now? Stewart admits that while it's slowly getting better for women, the comedy world still has a long way to go to become an even playing field.

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The comedian said he was doing a podcast with David Axelrod a year ago when someone in the audience asked him what he thought about swirling allegations against C.K. - and he quickly deflected. Stewart said as the crowd laughed, later claiming, "I don't know what you're talking about but I can't really answer". "I don't know what you're talking about, I don't know what to say". "Digging around in it and finding that some people had done, it was hard, but we were all assured like, no, but we took somebody's word for it, and maybe that's an error on our part".

Jon Stewart has responded to the Louis CK sexual misconduct scandal after the comedian's recent admission and apology.

"I hadn't heard at that point of any of it", Stewart said.

She continued, "Louis C.K.'s life is so much a part of his movies and it's very personal, so you can not separate the work from the artist".