In the past, I have complained about HBO host Bill Maher, but for good reason. Of course, I’ve disagreed with him over the years, but lately, he has been pretty incorrigible to people who should be ideologically aligned with him.
Now, I will begin by showing you a clip of Real Time with Bill Maher from a few weeks ago. [Contains foul language]
Here’s another one from last week, via Mediate. (There is also some profanity there, too.)
In the second clip, Maher pivots from one topic to grinding his ax against Cornell West.
And just today, I saw this tweet from Roland Martin, who I had come to admire because he made some astute observations over the years:
You see, this is a microcosm is what ails the left and poisons overall political discussion. It’s not just about disagreeing on certain issues; it’s deeper than that.
Why Bill Maher and Roland Martin Are Part of the Problem
Maher and his ilk represent a number of Democrats who are still angry about last year’s results but refuse to learn from it all. It’s ironic, because he is accusing Cornell West of doing the same.
Basically, this is what Maher and co. keep doing:
- They chastise others for criticizing Clinton.
- They cut off others while those others are criticizing Clinton, even for valid reasons.
- The blame (young) Americans for not voting or voting third-party, even if those voters did not reside in swing states.
- They blame people like Cornell West for Clinton’s loss because they voiced unpopular dissenting opinions.
- They call others uninformed and entitled for wanting the Democrats to adopt certain platform items, like health care reform and student debt relief.
- They liken their opponents to children.
Am I getting warm?
Now, I get it: Maher is angry over the 2016 result and that Trump is in the White House. I don’t like what I’m seeing in this country, either. This is going to be a tough 3 ½ years. But Maher keeps taking unnecessary jabs at progressives, especially young progressives, because he blames them.
Why This Line of Attack Is So Bad
What Maher did was egotistical, tasteless, and extremely shortsighted. It uses the issue of race to score political points. And it’s basically like someone cutting off their nose to spite their face.
What Martin did was disappointing and surprising, given that he is exasperated with the rehashing of November 2016. (We all are, but who are the people who refuse to learn from it? The wrong people are being blamed.)
The main issue in the discussion about police brutality should have been police brutality — especially where black Americans are concerned — and what should be done to finally hold offending police officers accountable. Yet, Maher brought West on his show to blame his guest for the results of the 2016 election because West was open and honest about how he viewed both the major candidates.
Maher (and Martin) are in essence blaming others for all the bad things Trump has done and will do. That, my friends, should be beneath them.
Well, you might as well blame everyone who voted for Trump, including voters who hoped he would bring jobs back to the country and support American businesses. Trump is ultimately responsible for his actions, as are all lawmakers, policymakers, and CEO’s for their actions.
Would things be different with HRC in office? Yes, in some ways, especially in terms of domestic policy. For example: Perhaps we would be in better position where net neutrality was concerned. But “officer-involved” shootings still happened under Obama and they would have continued regardless of who won last year.
In any case, we need long-term solutions that would not come with the current makeup in Congress.
I will visit these things in my upcoming series.
For the Record
West called Trump “a catastrophe,” and he said Clinton would be “a neoliberal disaster.” Many of us may disagree with that opinion (for whatever reason), but was what West said enough to sway voters?
No, it wasn’t. West was entitled to his opinion and he had the right to vote the way he wanted. Yet that didn’t stop Maher from bickering with someone from what he once called “my tribe.”
What My Point Is
We are still talking about the 2016 election, even now, and accusations like those from Maher and Martin rile me up.
We can agree on many things, like the lack of justice for Americans in the face of police brutality. Yet, why do many of us then use that as a stick to beat each other with? It makes no sense because the people being blamed and screamed at right now have little power.
People wonder way liberals can’t seem to stick together on this issue, but the people asking that question don’t seem to want the answers. Once again, we are not going to make any progress unless we are willing to listen to each other and hash out our differences. There needs to be an open dialogue, but one side has the bigger megaphone.
That’s why I started this survey.
Please take part in it, because your answers will be important for upcoming posts.
We might tick each other off and what we have to say may be difficult to hear, but that’s part of life. We will have to swallow our pride sometimes, but we need to consider different viewpoints and seek the truth.
Unfortunately, we cannot turn back the clock. But we can come up with a plan to figure out how we can move forward.
The Lead-up to Other Posts
The discussion West and Maher were having leads to other topics I need to tackle:
In the future, I would like to talk about some suggestions and what some police departments have already done about the overarching problems.
Before that, I want to take a look at the 1994 Crime Bill and the effects of it. That will also lead to a discussion about the #BlackLivesMatter movement and other posts I mentioned sometime last year. (Yes I’ve been procrastinating and badly.)