As we pointed out this week, Bill Maher unleashed a vile assault on Christians, singling out Catholics, on his November 10 HBO show, "Real Time with Bill Maher."
After discussing an offensive remark made by Alabama state auditor Jim Zeigler, who defended senatorial candidate Roy Moore by citing Joseph and Mary as an example of an older man having sex with a minor, Maher said, "Using Jesus to justify child molestation? I mean, even Catholics went, 'Tried it, doesn't work.'"
Maher wasn't finished. "Joseph and Mary didn't f***. Isn't that the whole point of the story?"
Maher's long history of assaulting the sensibilities of Catholics extends back decades (go to the Catholic League website and click on "Special Reports"). We've pursued many avenues of redress against him, but his corporate defenders continue to invoke a free speech argument. That answer was undercut by HBO twice this year.
Just this month, HBO announced that Louis C.K. was barred from participating in the "Night of Too Many Stars: America Unites for Autism Programs"; it is scheduled to air live November 18. HBO also noted that Louis C.K.'s past projects have been removed from its On Demand services. It even nixed all of Louis C.K.'s programs, including "Lucky Louie," from its website.
After Maher dropped the "N-word" on his June 2 show, HBO said the next day, "Bill Maher's comment last night was completely inexcusable and tasteless. We are removing his deeply offensive comment from any subsequent airings of the show." Maher apologized, saying that "The word was offensive and I regret saying it and am very sorry."
Catholics want equal justice. Accordingly, we are launching a petition asking HBO to respond to Maher the way it responded to him in June.
If the "N-word" is "inexcusable," "tasteless," and "deeply offensive"—and it is—is it not at least as "inexcusable," "tasteless," and "deeply offensive" to speak in such an obscene manner about Jesus, his mother, and his step-father?
To sign the petition, click here.
Bill Donohue is President and CEO of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, the nation's largest Catholic civil rights organization. He was awarded his Ph.D. in sociology from New York University and is the author of seven books and many articles.