Miley Cyrus & Adam Sandler Open 'Tonight Show' With Tribute to Las Vegas Victims, Late Night Hosts Weigh In
By Zach Seemayer
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In the wake of the horrific mass shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada on Sunday, Jimmy Fallon opened Monday's Tonight Show with an emotional performance from Miley Cyrus.
The Younger Now artist, joined by Adam Sandler on guitar, performed a moving rendition of Dido's "No Freedom," which Cyrus said was in remembrance of the victims of the attack.
Introducing Cyrus' performance, which kicked off her five-day "Miley Week" on the Tonight Show, Fallon addressed the tragic events that unfolded Sunday night at the Route 91 country musical festival, where 59 people were killed and over 520 people injured by a lone gunman with automatic weapons.
"This morning we woke up to the news of another senseless shooting -- this time in Las Vegas," Fallon said. "In the face of tragedies and acts of terror, we need to remember that good still exists in this world. We’re here to entertain you tonight and that’s what we’re going to do."
"Once again, we want to send out thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families and anyone who was hurt by this unimaginably cruelty," Colbert said. "Now, terrible things happen in the world, and sometimes, like today, we feel like they've risen to a new level. But we cannot accept that as a new normal."
"This afternoon, the President called this 'an act of pure evil,' and I think he's right," the outspoken host continued. "So what then are we willing to do to combat 'pure evil?' The answer can't be nothing. It can't."
Colbert implored Trump, and members of Congress, to work towards common sense gun control legislation, or come up with a "better answer" to the epidemic of gun violence in America.
"[Do] anything but nothing. Doing nothing is cowardice. Doing something will take courage," he shared. "It took courage for the people at the concert last night to help each other as bullets flew. It took courage for the first responders to rush in and do their jobs. It took courage for Las Vegas to simply go about their day today."
Following Colbert's show, James Corden opened The Late Late Show with similar sentiments about the importance of gun control reform and how, from the perspective of someone who's lived most of his life outside America, the country needs to catch up with the rest of the world.
"Last night was the biggest mass shooting in the United States history. That's a record that's been set twice in the two and half years that I've been living in America," Corden said. "Here's another statistic: 11,660 people have died in the last 275 days in this country. Now, I come from a place where we don't have shootings at this frequency, so it's hard for me to fathom. But it should be hard for everyone to fathom. Gun violence should not be a staple of American life."
"Some say it's too early to talk about gun control. For those victims last night, it's far too late," he continued.
Corden also recounted how he had heard a political pundit argue that there's no way to prevent crazed "lone wolf" gunmen from committing these heinous acts, and it made him wonder, "How does every other developed country do a better job at preventing these attacks?"
Late Night's Seth Meyers echoed Corden's sentiments at the start of his show, after sharing his condolences with the victims and their families, as well as his thanks to the first responders and the thousands who turned out to give blood and donate money in the wake of the shooting.
"It always seems like the worst displays of humanity in this country are immediately followed by the best. And sadly, that is always followed by no action at all, and then it repeats itself," Meyers said. "We've talked about gun violence on this show before, and I'm not sure what else I can say. I also know nothing I say will many any difference at all."
Meyers then addressed the politicians who continue to say that this is the wrong time to debate gun control.
"You always say, 'Now is not the time to talk about it,' but what you really mean is, 'There is never a time to talk about it.' And it would be so much more honest if you would just admit you plan is to never talk about it and never take any action," Meyers said.
Conan O'Brien opened his show with a somber reflection on how many times he's had to address horrifying shooting sprees, just in the last few years.
"I've been doing this job for more than 24 years, and when I began in 1993, occasions like this were extremely rare. For me or any TV comedy host back then, to need to come out and address a mass shooting spree was practically unheard of," O'Brien shared. "But over the last decade, things have changed."
"Today, when I came into work, my head writer was standing in my paper with a sheaf of papers, and he said, 'Here are the remarks you made after the Sandy Hook shootings and the Pulse Nightclub attacks in Orlando. You might want to look at them to see what you might want to say tonight.' And that, that struck me," he continued, as his voice quaked with emotion. "How could there be a file of mass shooting remarks for a late night host? When did that become normal? When did this become a ritual? And what does it say about us that it has?"
"It’s the kind of thing that makes you want to throw up or give up," said the outspoken host, who was brought to tears several times during his remarks. "It’s too much to even process -- all these devastated families who now have to live with this pain forever because one person with a violent and insane voice in his head managed to stockpile a collection of high-powered rifles and use them to shoot people."
Authorities say the horrifying massacre was carried out by a gunman who opened fire on the attendees at the outdoor concert during from the window of his hotel room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay resort, located across the street from the concert venue.
In the wake of the mass shooting, celebrities and public figures across the country have come out to strongly advocate for gun control reform and stricter firearm laws in an effort to combat gun-related deaths in America. Watch the video below to hear some of the most passionate pleas and demands for stronger firearm legislation.