Bill Maher = Woman-Hating, Child-Hating Idiot

September 15th, 2007 by MamaBear

I’ve seen his stand-up. I’ve watched his show, “Politically Incorrect.” I never was much impressed with either. Sure, he was funny at times — who isn’t if given enough airtime? — But for the most part, he always struck me as a misogynistic ass.

I was not wrong, apparently. Last night, Bill Maher spoke out on breastfeeding and lactivism, making fun of the latter and criticizing the former. Apparently, in Bill Maher’s world, it’s totally okay to show tits if they’re being used ornamentally, but start feeding a baby and suddenly that’s totally inappropriate. He compares public nursing to masturbation… because…Well, because he’s an idiot. I’ll break it down into more digestible pieces for the idiots out there, like Bill Maher, that compare breastfeeding to masturbation because they are both “natural” acts.

Breastfeeding is compared to masturbation, defecation, urination, spitting, and a whole slew of unappetizing but ultimately natural acts by morons everywhere. Here’s a newsflash for you: breastfeeding is natural, yes, and those other things are also natural. Death is also natural, but lactivists are not advocating for public death. “Because it’s natural” is not the only reason to breastfeed. It’s a minor one, not sufficient to fully explain why breastfeeding is better than formula feeding for the infant, just the tip of the tip of the iceberg.

Yes, breastfeeding is natural, but that’s not why most people choose to do it. Women choose it for their babies, and work so hard to make it a reality for themselves, because it’s the best, most healthful feeding choice available to them. Many women who breastfeed successfully cannot pump enough milk to make a full bottle for their babies, a fact that is completely ignored by these (usually men) who criticize women who breastfeed in public by saying they “don’t plan ahead” or are “lazy.” Additionally, a lot of breastfed babies would refuse to drink from a bottle even if their moms did manage to squeeze out enough milk to feed them. You cannot force a baby to eat, either at the breast or from a bottle. What are these women expected to do? Stay at home for two years plus? Never go anywhere, because Bill Maher and others like him deem breastfeeding moms a “nuisance?” (Post-partum depression due to isolation…? Nah… Just tell those ‘whiny’ post-partum women to pop a pill to ‘deal with it,’ right, Bill?) Oh wait, I know what you really want… You want these mothers to wean their babies prematurely so that you don’t have to bother with averting your gaze when you see their babies eating in public. That’s more like it, right? (Remember, many babies refuse to nurse if you cover them with a blanket, so that’s not an option either.)

So, Bill, our cause isn’t “important” enough? This is a public health crisis, as far as I’m concerned, apparently a much bigger one than I initially thought with influential people like you poisoning the minds of your audience members with this dreck, yet you don’t think it’s “important” because you can’t appreciate the effect it has on society? At least tell me you received a check from the IFC, or that you have shares in formula stock, so that the selling of your soul actually made you some money. I wouldn’t be surprised either way, actually. Your stand-up has always had misogynistic overtones, so you probably did this (and gave the formula companies a foothold, probably without even intending to) for free.

Look, I’m all for global warming awareness. There’s definitely enough evidence to indicate that’s a real problem. This awareness of global warming and other salient issues does not preclude me from also being aware of the importance of getting more mothers to breastfeed, and for fighting for the rights of these same mothers to be openly accepted in society when they take their children out in public. How does one negate the other?! I don’t follow your line of (completely irrational) thinking…

Here’s video of Bill Maher making a complete ass of himself. The anti-lactivism segment starts when the YouTube counter reads 2:51. (Those of you in the know will notice Bill Maher is extra clueless since he states that the Applebee’s nurse-out was the “world’s first.” My previous post dispels that bit of fiction definitively.)

Update: The blog response has been overwhelming regarding Bill Maher’s anti-breastfeeding-in-public stance. Salon featured an article about it (in which this blog, as well as others, were linked) entitled “Bill Maher: ‘Don’t Show me Your Tits!’” So, is the next step a nurse-in at the “Real Time with Bill Maher” studio?  This ought to be interesting…

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12 Responses to “Bill Maher = Woman-Hating, Child-Hating Idiot”

  1. Feminist Law Professors » Blog Archive » “Bill Maher = Woman-Hating, Child-Hating Idiot” Says:

    […] can read the post by this name here. Or you can read on entitled “Bill Maher is a Misogynistic Anti-Breastfeeding Pig” […]

  2. Lesley Says:

    As I said over at the Lactivist’s blog, I never liked him.

    I showed the clip to my husband, who is a nurse and a huge supporter of breastfeeding, and this was his comment:

    “Look at him. Look at the arrogance. His body language is stating quite clearly that he is 100% certain that he is right. And he is so far off base.”

    And it’s true, if you watch his body language you see that he feels totally justified in telling women that their breasts are not for breastfeeding. Sigh.

    What makes me laugh is the “World’s First Nurse-In” line. Do his people not know how to use google? I just did and there were 4 different stories of nurse-ins, and NONE of them referred to Applebee’s incident. Ya dropped the ball on the research there Billy.

  3. neworleansbearcub Says:

    A feminist non sequitur? Apparently Bill Maher “…hates all women. And he hates your babies…” [http://unapologeticallyfemale.blogspot.com]; “is a woman hating, child-hating idiot [http://feministlawprofs.law.sc.edu & http://www.breastfeedingsymbol.org]; and he is “misogynistic” [http://guerillawomentn.blogspot.com]. Perhaps he is a woman & baby hating misogynist, but if so it is not because of his opposition to public breastfeeding. How do you go from not wanting to watch breastfeeding to hating women?

  4. MamaBear Says:

    neworleansbearcub:

    It is clear he hates women and children in how he talks about them. This has been pretty evident from his stand-up, to Politically Incorrect, to his present show on HBO. Just in the video segment above he says, “[sarcastic] …You made a baby!…[end sarcasm]… Something a DOG can do.” He clearly hates women, children, and anything remotely female… Unless it’s for his own pleasure — then he’s o.k. with it… A sexist double-standard which serves him and deletes the notion that females or anything remotely feminine are to be taken seriously. Clearly he’s a misogynist.

    And it’s not “How do you go from not wanting to watch breastfeeding to hating women?” It’s more that he already hates women and has repeatedly demonstrated that he has been hating them for years, so for him to be repulsed by breastfeeding in public and denouncing lactivists and lactivism as “petty” and a cause not worth fighting for is only natural for him to do, since disregarding the needs of women (and children) and not even attempting to understand them is what he’s accustomed to doing.

    So, to respond to your question: NO. No feminist non sequiturs here.

    Thanks to you and Lesley for commenting.

  5. tacomamama Says:

    Whether or not he’s a misogynist (and if you don’t think he is, you either haven’t watched him much or you are one yourself) he’s definitely a hypocrite, or just willfully ignorant.

    Just last week he made a huge deal out of a guest from PETA, who explained the connection between raising cows and global warming.

    This week, he tells nursing women to stay home and put their boobs away. You know Bill, that really makes a lot of sense. Just think about it for a minute, or maybe you’re too busy ranting about the importance of natural foods to realize that you just PUT A BUNCH OF MONEY IN THE POCKET OF DAIRY BUYPRODUCT-PEDDLING FORMULA COMPANIES.

    Every somewhat misogynist ass who sees this show now has fuel for the fire next time they ask their wife/girlfriend/friend/relative/complete-stranger-they-have-no-reason-to-say-anything-to, to cover up/stay home/do that in the restroom.

    You can’t schedule breastfeeding and carry on with it successfully past the first few months. If you’re not someone who can pump and staying home is the only option, either you willingly isolate yourself or you wean your kids to formula. Or, just go out and ignore the idiots.

  6. A Whole Lot of Nothing Says:

    I’m wearing my BF Symbol shirt proudly!

    I wrote about the situation before BM’s idiotic rant:
    http://awholelotofnothing.net/?p=42

  7. MamaBear Says:

    tacomama:

    Definitely. The fact that he can’t make the connection between discouraging public breastfeeding and therefore encouraging bottle-feeding and doesn’t relate that to environmental issues speaks volumes not only of his misogyny, but of his inability to make easy connections in his woman-hating, misfiring brain.

    A Whole Lot of Nothing:

    Woo-hoo!! I’m glad you like the shirt! :)

  8. Katy Says:

    Ok, I just have to say that watching that Bill Maher clip was one of the most disturbing things I have seen and I am actually shocked that anyone could say something like that. I shouldn’t be shocked, I guess I should know that attitude is out there, but I still find it unbelievable and really upsetting. Plus, to read some of the comments and support he received on the utube page, very, very troubling.

    I did look him up on wikipedia, and there are some equally terrible quotes with Bill Maher equating children who are “retarded” (his word, not mine) with dogs, so I suppose if he can stupe that low, nothing else should be a surprise.

  9. Trina Says:

    Bill Maher is a COMEDIAN. Expecting him to be PC is like expecting Stephen Colbert to be PC. He is going for laughs with his “New Rules” segment. It’s obvious that some people don’t have enough of a sense of humor to laugh at themselves.

  10. MamaBear Says:

    Trina,

    I’m not expecting him to be PC. I’m expecting him to be well-informed on the subject if he’s going to go through the trouble of bringing it up. I know part of his schtick is to be a misogynistic asshole, and I don’t approve of it, which is not to say that I haven’t agreed with him on OTHER things politically (like the environment). It’s just when he opens his mouth about women, it’s very apparent he hates them with every fiber of his being, and I’m not going to sit there and take it without making a comment about it.

    Yeah, Bill Maher labels himself a comedian, and, as with all comedians, sometimes their jokes fall flat. In this case, Bill Maher fell totally flat and alienated a significant portion of the population (even with low breastfeeding rates, breastfeeding mothers compose a significant percentage of the population).

    Also, don’t compare Bill Maher to Stephen Colbert. Their styles of comedy are totally different. Bill Maher is plain malicious in a lot of his comedy while Stephen Colbert mostly uses a lot of reverse psychology in his. They are completely different animals. Additionally, Stephen Colbert isn’t a misogynist, nor has he given any indication he hates children. More importantly, though, Stephen Colbert is FUNNY.

  11. Steph Says:

    Am a bf mama in Republic of Ireland and just watched that clip.. that’s quite disgraceful.. who does he think he is! what an arrogant jerk!

  12. MamaBear Says:

    Thanks for commenting, Steph. As far as I know, Bill Maher has never apologized for what he said in this clip.

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