Sometimes comedy comes with a sting. Sarcastically attacking others is often part of a comedian’s act, and some comedians can make this approach work for them. For example, Don Rickles built a long and successful career in comedy by heartlessly insulting his audience as well as others. But at what point do sarcastic comedic attacks become bigotry cleverly disguised as comedy? Although its precise location can be difficult to pin down, there is a line to be drawn between comedy and bigoted sarcasm. This being the case, one thing is certain: Bill Maher frequently crosses over the line.
Let me say at the outset that I am not a grouchy old curmudgeon who cannot take a joke. As a public figure in my community and state, I have been roasted many times. Further, I fully understand that people with thin skins tend to lead lives of perpetual frustration and that as a consequence, it is wise to avoid taking one’s self too seriously. Because of this, I tend to ignore the jokes of liberal comedians who like to poke fun at conservatives, Christians, Americans, and anyone else who refuses to buy into their leftwing silliness.
However, ignoring Bill Maher’s persistent, vitriolic, anti-Christian diatribes is becoming difficult. Maher has become so political and anti-Christian in his monologues that he no longer qualifies as a comedian—if he ever did. In fact, his views on Christianity are so venomous that a reasonable viewer might wonder if Maher harbors some deep-seated, unresolved, grudge against the Church. Whatever the reason, Maher certainly appears to resent people of faith, and he uses the platform he built with comedy as a bully pulpit to bully Christians. Listen to a Maher monologue and you will find yourself wondering what he really has against Christians. His anti-Christian “jokes” are simply too mean-spirited to be considered comedy.
I notice that Bill Maher and his ilk rarely if ever pick on Muslims in their jokes. Is this because they are afraid that Muslims won’t simply turn the other cheek? Christians, because of their philosophy of tolerance, forgiveness, and love are easy targets for comedic bullies like Bill Maher. Here is what Armstrong Williams had to say about this topic (The Washington Times, April 28, 2014): “How is it, then, that we still have in this country this sort of rhetoric from seemingly intelligent men? Why is it that yet another group is being subjected to one-sided slander? Is it because comedians and some members of the more serious media are willing to pick only on people who generally don’t defend themselves?” There is a name for people who pick on those who either do not or cannot fight back. Actually there are two names. The first is bully and the second is coward.
In one of his more recent anti-Christian diatribes, Maher used discussing the movie “Noah” as the lead-in for a vicious attack in which he called God a “psychotic mass murderer.” Then he questioned how Christians could worship a God who drowns babies—this from a man who supports abortion. Apparently not only is Maher anti-Christian, he is a hypocrite who has difficulty applying common logic. Of course, finding out that a liberal is both illogical and a hypocrite is hardly news. But most liberal bigots and hypocrites don’t try to pass themselves off as comedians.
Right-minded Americans are trying to eliminate racism and bigotry, and we are making some progress. As a result, bigots like Donald Sterling who reveal themselves publically now pay a heavy price for their bone-headed, intolerant views (although equally offensive louts like Al Sharpton still get a pass). Consequently, I doubt that Bill Maher would even dream of making bigoted remarks about blacks or gays, but he does not hesitate to make them about Christians. Like most liberals he does not really embrace diversity, in spite of self-serving claims to the contrary. Rather, Maher appears to apply the tired old leftwing rule of thumb: act like you embrace diversity but embrace only those aspects that suit the broader liberal agenda. Christianity does not fit that agenda.
Consequently, Christians are fair game when it comes to bigotry, including that disguised as comedy. My message for Bill Maher and crowd is simple: bigotry is not funny. If you want to continue your mean-spirited attacks on Christians whose only response is to turn the other cheek while praying for your lost, undeserving soul, change your wardrobe. It’s time for you to reveal who you really are and come on camera wearing your hood and robe. While you are at it, why not burn a few crosses during your venomous monologues?