Bill Maher Rips ‘White America’ For Pretending That There Is No More Racism

Bill Maher and panelists talk racism on Real Time With Bill Maher. Maher blames 'white America' for the problem Image Credit: The Raw Story

Bill Maher and panelists talk racism on Real Time With Bill Maher. Maher blames ‘white America’ for the problem
Image Credit: The Raw Story

Racism is a difficult subject to discuss, no doubt about it. It is a subject people get angry about, and a subject that very few who do not experience it completely understand. However, one person who does understand racism is Bill Maher, the comedian and political satirist who stars on HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher. Maher and his panelists on this past Friday night’s episode, Joan Walsh, Wendell Pierce, and Rep. John Kingston tackled the issue.

The conversation started out with discussions of the current domestic violence scandals in the NFL and how they are being handled, but it quickly turned to the issue of police brutality and racism in law enforcement, particularly regarding the controversy in Ferguson, MO that has made national headlines and outraged people everywhere. Actor Wendell Pierce tackled the idea that only domestic violence is a black community issue. He said:

For every one or two or three that may have been in the news because of violence, there are another two thousand that comport themselves as gentlemen, as husbands, as fathers, and as great professionals …It’s not a black thing; white people beat their kids, too.

I have to agree with Pierce. I’ve known plenty of white parents who firmly believe in corporal punishment, and I’ve also known white women who are victims of domestic violence at the hands of their partners. So, no, this isn’t just a black thing. It just so happens that it makes the news more frequently with black families.

Maher blamed, firstly, economic hardship on the problem, saying that “rich white people don’t beat their kids.” I don’t know if this is true or not, because rich white people have the connections and resources to keep indiscretions out of the news, so it is likely that it happens, but we just don’t hear about it. As usual, Maher also blamed religion for people beating their spouses and children. He says:

There are so many horrible f*cking ideas in the Bible.

This I agree with wholeheartedly. I find myself scratching my head each day, trying to figure out how so many people take a book that is so full of violence and other terrible things as some kind of guide for right living. It makes no sense whatsoever. Maher is a million percent correct there.

Salon editor Joan Walsh brought up the idea that white privilege could have something to do with the culture of corporal punishment in black families. She said:

The tragic thing is … black parents have resorted to violence in order to keep their kids in line because they can’t be entitled.

This is true. As a black woman, I grew up hearing parents tell unruly children that they thought were going down the wrong path that their beatings were “tough love.” These desperate parents know the inequalities of the legal system, and how quick law enforcement officials are to assume that black people are doing something wrong, even if we aren’t. These parents would rather beat their kids at home and keep them in line than have them wind up in jail, or worse, dead at the hands of law enforcement. It is a sad truth to have to live, but a truth nonetheless.

When the talk turned to the highly controversial, racially charged events of late in Ferguson, MO, Maher was straightforward and blunt:

I don’t think we need new laws, I don’t think we need reparations. I just think white America needs to stop putting forth the toxic idea that racism is over.

So right, Mr. Maher. The idea that racism is over is false, offensive, and, in many cases, downright dangerous. The only people who think there is no racism in America are likely the ones looking to justify their own racist attitudes. That is shameful in this day and age, but also true.

Watch the segment below: