Bill Maher Tweets Hamas-Domestic Violence "Joke," Offends Just About Everyone
You know what, 137-character-tweets that try to LOL about the Middle East can backfire at the best of times. But when they bring in a bag of sexism, too? Well, the consequences are easy to imagine. On Thursday, HBO's political talk show host, Bill Maher, sent a tweet comparing Hamas to a "woman trying to kill you" that "you have to slap." I've got one question for Maher: do you make these kinds of gross and sexist analogies often? Coz that might explain some of the "crazy" women wanting to kill you.
Late Thursday, the Israel Defense Forces began their threatened full-on ground invasion of Gaza. According to CNN, Israel sent in tanks, infantry, and intelligence units, as well as aerial and naval support, in response to rockets fired by Hamas. The move is the culmination of a bloody week of violence, in which 271 Gaza residents have died — most of them civilians and many of them children, according to the U.N. — and over 2,000 have been injured. So far, there have been two Israeli victims of the violence, one soldier and one civilian. At the time of the Israel's announcement of the ground offensive, emotions around the situation were, understandably, at boiling point.
It was around this time that Maher sent his tweet, apparently in defense of IDF's military operation. "Dealing w/ Hamas is like dealing w/ a crazy woman who's trying to kill u - u can only hold her wrists so long before you have to slap her," Maher wrote, apparently forgetting that we're not in the 1950's and domestic violence isn't such a chilled-out pass-time anymore. (Also, just, what?)
The backlash on the Twittersphere was immediate. Some people were just confused. Quite a few people were unimpressed with the fact that he'd managed to insert even more violence into an already violent — and deadly — political situation, just for a laugh. Most people were upset that he was advocating hitting women in a bizarre and roundabout way.
To give Maher his dues, quite a few celebs have caught some shtick for weighing in on the current Mid-East crisis. Having given him his dues, none of these other celebreties have managed to offend all women everywhere at the same time. Oh, and the celebs apologized/pretended they weren't aware of their Tweets (and let's face it, theirs were only political hashtags) — as it stands, Maher hasn't even bothered to take his down.