Monday, March 05, 2007

Maher = Coulter? Please.

The widespread outrage and disgust over Ann Coulter's idiotic remarks at the CPAC convention (Edwards, faggot, etc.) prompted the rabid right to fire back with what they considered something far more odious: Bill Maher supposedly being sorry that Dick Cheney wasn't assassinated. We'll see you one homophobic slur and raise you one assassination attempt!

On his show last week, Maher was discussing the failed assassination attempt on Cheney in Afghanistan, and subsequent reactions by commenters at the Huffington Post. Predictably, people were venting some pretty serious spleen (albeit mostly in a humourous vein: "Waste of a bomb" etc). Right-wingers immediately took issue and many posts ensued about how "nobody hates like the angry, angry left". HuffPo then removed some of the more venomous posts, and Bill Maher wondered why, from a freedom of speech point of view.

"Ridley: It’s one thing to say you hate Dick Cheney, which applies to his politics. It’s another thing to say, “I’m sorry he didn’t die in an explosion." And I think, you know…

Maher: But you should be able to say it. And by the way...

Frank: Excuse me, Bill, but can I ask you a question? Do you decide what the topics are for this show?

Maher: Yeah, I decide the topics, they don’t go there.

Frank: But you exercise control over the show the way that she does over her blog.

Maher: But I have zero doubt that if Dick Cheney was not in power, people wouldn’t be dying needlessly tomorrow. (applause)"

To interpret the above exchange as being sorry that Cheney wasn't assassinated is not only a stretch, it's completely missing Maher's point: if Cheney was gone (by choice or by chance), other people wouldn't be dying because of his policies. This is an undeniable and self-evident truth. Maher's comment wasn't an expression of sorrow at the failed assassination attempt as much as a statement of the obvious; equivocating it to Coulter's moronic rancor is comparing apples to ball-peen hammers.

And one more thing: there have been a lot of conservatives stepping up to denounce Coulter's dumbassitude; I don't see any lefties responding the same way to Maher. Kinda says it all.