Bill Maher is in deep shit because he said some shit. Some say he should lose his job while others acknowledge his wrongdoing — and accept the apology that was hastily released when it became clear that shit has finally hit the fan.
Maher’s intentional snafu happened during a segment of Real Time With Bill Maher — his HBO offshoot that became his platform of choice after parting ways with ABC when the network tried to stifle Maher’s controversial tendencies on Politically Incorrect.
The exchange between the political commentator and Sen. Ben Sasse from Nebraska, seemed sedately comfortable at first until things took a fateful turn when Maher playfully mocked an invitation to visit Sasse’s neck of the woods and “work the fields” by astoundingly referring to himself as a “house nigger.”
Maher has since been heavily criticized and intensely scolded for his blatant disregard for a period in our history that so often suffers from the stifling blow of indifference from those who prefer to “leave the past in the past.”
The comedian has expressed regret and acknowledges that “the word was offensive”
Sasse for his part unleashed a series of tweets where he unequivocally denounced his host’s actions and explained: “the history of the n-word is an attack on universal dignity. It’s therefore an attack on the American Creed. Don’t use it.”
The hashtag #FireBillMaher has been initiated as celebs and former fans are convinced that their outrage won’t be reduced until HBO grants them their wish.
Truth be told, the end result for fellow comedian Kathy Griffin’s publicity stunt that featured her holding the bloody head of the President of The United States doesn’t sit well with me. I totally support an American’s right of expression especially when it involves exposing the fundamental reason why Donald Trump can’t ever be described as a victim.
However, Bill Maher’s decision to rely on the most brutal and inhumane period of our history for comedic relief is atrocious and basically indefensible — not to mention despicably vile.
The fact that Maher was inspired to ask for forgiveness is a feat that quite frankly goes against his well-sculpted public persona. It’s obviously a personal plea for things to go back to normal as soon as possible and with little or no consequences.
But, there has to be some form of punishment for anyone or any organization that accommodates the notion — that the unfathomable treatment levied on the souls and bodies of the innocent — can somehow be reduced to a laughing matter.
The debate that erupts when the healthy use of the n-word is in question — hovers around the accusation by White people who can’t grasp why they aren’t granted permission to say the word when Black people are given free reign.
Here’s the thing, there is no confusion that grips us when faced with the reasons why such a word shouldn’t be uttered under any circumstances, although it continues to sift through the funnels of creative outlets and social relations.
This casual use of a word that represents the very worst of what we as a people endured at the hands of fellow humans who deemed it necessary to strip us of our dignity — by permanently erasing the roots of familial bonds — is a tragic insult to those that died in captivity as well the activists that are killed during the quest to restore glory among ruins.
My respect and loyalty to Maher evaporated the moment he exercised his right to be White and privileged by utilizing the assistance of a country’s mired legacy — that still presents layers of complexities through the current climate of hate and murderous rage.
Maher’s apology should not save him because the stakes are too high to reorganize the level of tolerance — that supposedly suits a particular brand of ignorance that should never be transferable for the sake of packaged art.
The systematic arousal of collided interpretations of how slavery and its aftermath continually erodes the already weary fabric of a cultural quilt — that was unfolded on the backs of African-Americans— is a disturbing undercurrent that proves why racial harmony may very well remain a low-rent fantasy.
Maher crossed the line and then proceeded to tap dance on the exposed nerves and tendons that keep our gaping wounds from healing — while providing comfort and assurance to detractors — that seize any opportunity to heighten the validity of a word that still means so much to too many for vastly different reasons.
From Megyn Kelly’s determination to keep Santa Clause and Jesus stoically White — to the sickening rant of politicians comparing the former Commander-in-Chief and First Lady to roaming primates — People of color have never been free in the true sense of the word.
The disconnect between Whites and Blacks thrives with the acceptance that the shackles that held us down not too long ago translates into incoherency for descendants of White slave masters — that persistently carry the destructive mindset of extreme nonchalance.
We have to get Real, which means that Time has run out for Bill Maher, and that shouldn’t ever be negotiable.