Bill Maher is Right
A few days ago, actor Robert DeNiro made a quip during a campaign fundraiser for President Obama:
Callista Gingrich. Karen Santorum. Ann Romney. Now do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady?
As a result of this joke former House Speaker and Republican Presidential candidate Newt Gingrich criticized DeNiro’s statement. On Piers Morgan’s CNN program, Gingrich noted the hypocrisy of DeNiro’s joke. Newt stated that while the Left and news media jumped all over Rush Limbaugh for calling Reproductive Rights activist and attorney Sandra Fluke a slut but they give DeNiro a pass.
Michelle Obama’s Press Secretary called DeNiro’s remarks inappropriate and Robert DeNiro later apologized.
A few days ago The New York Times published a very thoughtful column by HBO Real Time host Bill Maher making the case that not only for a truce from remarks made by people on the Left and Right but also that each side needs to stop playing tit-for-tat in terms of when someone in the media or entertainment field makes dumb statements.
Rush’s and DeNiro’s statements were inappropriate and Bill Maher has has made his share of dumb remarks too. All three gentlemen were right to apologize but Maher is right in that it’s time for each side to stop playing the Political Correctness game.
An important hallmark of free speech is the right of free discourse and, like Maher points out, we do not want to end up like Canada or have our speech degenerate into Orwellian Doublespeak where people are so afraid to say anything on their minds since it might hurt someone’s sensibilities that free speech in the U.S. is dumbed down to almost nothing.
In short, Bill Maher is (rightly) stating it’s time to grow up.