“Bye, Propecia!” exclaimed Bill Maher Friday night, adding, “To quote Melania: Thank god that’s over with.”
The Real Time host kicked off his late-night monologue with a series of jabs at Donald Trump, the now former president who left the White House after letting COVID run wild all over the country, contracting (and possibly spreading) COVID himself, tearing at the fabric of our democracy by questioning the results of one of the more secure elections in history (which was not very close in the first place), and helping incite a treasonous siege of the Capitol.
“Boy, Donald Trump the last couple of months left graciously,” joked Maher. “From not being man enough to admit that he lost the election, to then telling the mob ‘I’m with ya’ and then he runs back into the house, to not attending the inauguration—class all the way, this motherfucker. I’m so glad he did not attend the inauguration, because you know, he’s the ex-husband you don’t want to invite to the wedding because he’ll stand up and yell, ‘She’s a whore!’”
But later on, during the panel portion, things got strange when the conversation turned to race. Maher, as you may probably know, has a checkered past when it comes to racism and bigotry, from dropping the N-word on his program, to regularly trading in Islamophobia, to saying that Black Republican Rep. Will Hurd collected CIA intelligence “by the Popeyes Chicken,” to a despicable rant against China over the novel coronavirus.
Have no fear, however, because Bill Maher does not see race so much (according to Bill Maher).
“So, am I wrong to not want to see race all the time? Because that’s how I was brought up. Like that’s what a good liberal does, is you don’t see race. And now, they switched it all around and I’m bad because I don’t see it all the time. Is ubiquity even effective? To make people aware of this issue at every turn?” said Maher.
That led one of his guests, podcast co-host Kmele Foster, to “agree with Donald Trump” in arguing that “diversity and inclusion training can often increase people’s racial insensitivity,” and that it can make workplaces “less harmonious.” (As someone who’s taken hours and hours of diversity and inclusion training, and who is a minority himself, the prevailing opinion was that it brought our office closer together and certainly did not increase racial insensitivity.)
“I’m so sympathetic to the cause, but don’t gaslight me, you know?” argued Maher. “And this is what I hear privately from my Black friends: I don’t want to be the focal point. I just want to blend in. I want to have a beer like you. Don’t look at me like I have to make a speech about it, or you have to make a speech about it.” (To be clear, this is Bill Maher speaking on behalf of his anonymous Black friends.)
“Is the picture of America that’s presented by the radicals, I would say—Black Lives Matter, some of them, the anti-racists—of America 2021, is it an accurate picture? Because sometimes I’m like, ‘Are they talking about 2021?’” pondered Maher.
I’ll leave you with the testimony of one of Maher’s exes, Karrine Steffans. Steffans, who is Black, once said of him, “Bill wants someone he can put down in an argument, tell you how ghetto you are, how big your butt is and that you’re an idiot. That’s why you never see him with a white girl or an intellectual.”