Jon Stewart devoted the Daily Show's lead-off segment last night to the plight of the man who's been called "Egypt's Jon Stewart." While Stewart never mentioned that moniker, he did say he was good friends with Bassem Youssef, and noted the similarities between them. On hearing that Youssef is accused of making fun of Mohammed Morsi's hats and imperfect English, Stewart flashed a photo of George W. Bush in a cowboy hat and said, "That was my entire career for eight years!"
Then Stewart got serious, addressing Morsi directly. "By the way, without Bassem, and all those journalists and bloggers and brave protesters who took to Tahrir Square to voice dissent, you, President Morsi, would not be in a position to repress them." He played an old Morsi interview in which the president said his critics—including Youssef specifically—needn't fear jail. "They are Egyptians. They are part of my family." And that, Stewart said, is what Egypt needs. "A democracy isn't a democracy if it only lasts until someone makes fun of your hat."