Bill Maher on the Boston Marathon: ‘Your City Was Not Leveled by Godzilla’
Well, Bill Maher has done it again. The HBO host/troll has found a way to offend some large segment of the population. In this case, he said of the Boston Marathon, “I mean, your city was not leveled by Godzilla,” a technically true statement that is nonetheless, pretty callous. The statement was made on his show last Friday, but The Boston Globe has brought it to everyone’s attention today. And there are some predictably unkind thoughts headed his way.
The comment came as Maher recounted the moment during the Red Sox World Series parade when players placed the trophy on the Boston Marathon finish line. He said:
So the parade, you know they go to the place where the marathon bombing took place, and they put the World Series statue there and they sing God Bless America and they say ‘Boston Strong’ and they chant ‘USA,’ you know. It was again, a bad day, three people died, that’s terrible. More were maimed, that’s horrible, but unfortunately that happens every day, in car accidents and everything else. I mean, you city was not leveled by Godzilla.
There’s nothing new about Bill Maher making people mad at him. He called Sarah Palin’s son the “r” word. He made a racial dick joke about the President. He’s a comedian who revels in the carefully calibrated causing of offense. (And prickly Boston makes itself a big troll target, sometimes.) So probably the only interesting thing about this particular instance is that Boston was defended by none other than Anthony Weiner, (The New York-based one). “I don’t know,” Weiner interrupted. “That’s such a nice—what’s wrong with you? That’s such a nice moment… It was like so cool. I’m not even from Boston.” (Maher, nice guy that he is, just pointed out that “what’s wrong with you,” is what people have frequently asked Weiner.)
” Weiner, not always a man of shrewd common sense, at least has the basic ability to distance himself from that bad statement when he hears it. As BostonGlobe.com editor Jason Tuohey puts it on Twitter, “You know you screwed up when you make Anthony Weiner look like the voice of reasoned compassion.”
But if you’re awaiting an apology from Maher, best to stop now. “When did we get it in our heads that we have the right to never hear anything we don’t like?” he asked in a 2012 New York Times column urging everyone to stop apologizing for the offensive stuff they do. We imagine that principle of non-apologizing is going to be tested in the coming days.