On Real Time With Bill Maher last night, the host used a racial slur for the sake of humor. But, not everyone found the use of the N-word funny. Maher was talking to Republican Senator Ben Sasse. When the congressman invited the host to Nebraska to “work in the fields” with them, the 61-year-old comedian was sarcastic in his reply.
“Senator … I’m a house n**ger.”
Bill Maher’s sarcastic comment on the show definitely drew a few laughs from the live audience. But, there were significant groans as well. The congressman from Nebraska appeared to be uncomfortable, even though Bill seemed unperturbed by the scratchy moment.
Sasse later posted a number of tweets to clarify his stand on the issue. He called himself a First Amendment “absolutist.” At the same time, he regretted not speaking up after Bill Maher used the N-word. He hoped he could ask the host why he thought it was OK to use that word.
“But free speech comes with a responsibility to speak up when folks use that word,” Sasse tweeted. “Me just cringing last night wasn’t good enough.”
According to the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, American people have the right to the freedom of speech. They are legally eligible for saying whatever they want to. Whenever there is a controversy regarding a comedian “crossing the line,” the First Amendment is referred to as a matter of defense.
There was an immediate reaction on Twitter about what Maher said on his show. However, there were many people who were not surprised by Bill Maher getting involved in the racial slur. And, their reason matched the kind of sarcasm that the N-word had on Real Time With Bill Maher. People are not surprised because they can apparently associate Bill Maher with that kind of racial abuse.
There were many Twitter users who pointed out that the comedian has a history of blurring the line between what is funny and what is offensive. Maher has a history of insensitive comments about religion and race, they argued. According to one of the users, Bill Maher is a “white Democrat” who uses all his “white” privileges to launch racial attacks.
There is no denying the fact that Bill Maher has a history of making controversial statements on politics, religion, and race. One of the examples was in 2003, when his ABC talk show was canceled. On Politically Incorrect, Bill Maher agreed with a statement that the 9/11 extremists were not cowards, the NBC News reported.
One of his recent controversies involves alt-right British media personality, Milo Yiannopoulos. There was strong criticism when he invited him to the show, as critics believed it gave the provocateur a chance to convey his contentious views to the world.
Meanwhile, HBO has responded to the controversy and called Bill Maher’s use of the N-word “completely inexcusable and tasteless.” In a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, HBO said that it would remove the racial slur from future airings of Real Time With Bill Maher.
“We are removing his deeply offensive comment from any subsequent airings of the show.”
While many consider Bill Maher’s controversial comments as racist, there are people who believe his views are subversive. That is why his statements often offend the conventional perspective.
However, there is a strong appeal from the offended ones for HBO to cancel Bill Maher’s show immediately. Civil rights activist DeRay Mckesson has demanded that Maher must leave because there can be no justification for his comment on the show.
— deray mckesson (@deray) June 3, 2017
Political analyst Gianno Caldwell has rejected the invitation to do Real Time With Bill Maher in June, as his conscience does not allow him.
I was invited to do Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO in June. I cannot in good conscience go onto his program. I reject the invitation. pic.twitter.com/TEHbRTfSTI
— Gianno Caldwell (@GiannoCaldwell) June 3, 2017
While HBO has strong words against Bill Maher’s racial slur, it has not commented if it will consider canceling his show.
[Featured Image by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]