John Oliver argued Sunday night that Stephen Colbert would make a better statue than any confederate symbol, and surprised his viewers with an actual cameo from the CBS late-night host.
To wrap up a 20-minute segment devoted to the current debate over confederate statues in America, HBO's "Last Week Tonight" host offered suggestions of impressive Americans that would be ideal choices for cities that want to "honor someone who really deserves it."
After unveiling prop statues of Bessie Coleman, the first African-American female pilot, and Congressman Robert Smalls, who was born into slavery before becoming a politician, Oliver suggested Colbert be honored in his hometown of Charleston, South Carolina, then pulled off a sheet to reveal the comedian.
"Why have a divisive Confederate statue when instead that pedestal can be filled by your favorite son, the actual Stephen Colbert, who will stand up there all day telling you fun facts about your wonderful town," Oliver said.
"Charleston is the site of the first free public library in America," Colbert said. "We're also Travel & Leisure's number one destination for five years running."
Oliver's exploration of the hot-button issue came after white supremacists once again gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia, over the weekend to protest the removal of a statue honoring confederate general Robert E. Lee, who actually once recommended against erecting statues memorializing "the sores of war."
"It's true. Robert E. Lee was opposed to statues of people like Robert E. Lee," Oliver said. "So any city that decides to keep a statue of him should at the very least add a speech bubble saying, 'You know I told you all specifically not to do this.'"