Samantha Bee gave a shoutout to 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg on Full Frontal Wednesday night, telling her audience that she was grateful that the teenager gave her “nightmares” about the planet dying.
“The only thing scarier than a 16-year-old girl is a 16-year-old girl with an agenda who knows how to hold a grudge,” Bee said. “Greta Thunberg terrifies me and I love her for it. She doesn’t want to inspire us or give us hope – she wants to give us nightmares because we deserve them.”
Bee noted that Thunberg’s main contribution to the climate discourse – shaming world leaders into taking action – is working, and quite successfully. Thanks to her, the European Union has pledged to commit hundreds of billions of euros to combat climate change, and the British Parliament has declared a climate emergency and pledged to zero out its carbon emissions by 2050.
The late-night host also took aim at online misogynists who have targeted Thunberg over the last few weeks. “Preserving a livable planet has somehow become a threat to the ‘entitlements of masculine primacy,'” Bee snarked, referencing a scientific research paper on threatened masculinity in climate skeptics that was quoted in a recent New Republic story. She also brought up a recent study that suggests men are less likely to recycle than women for fear of being perceived as gay.
“The only way people will think you’re gay for recycling is if you return cans on a date with your partner, who is a man, and who is also gay,” Bee said.