Real Time Nausea

Thursday, September 23, 2004

Flipping through the channels trying to escape the ridiculousness that is Tough Crowd With Colin Quinn (which by the way changed its tagline from "4 Rounds of Smart Comedy" to "4 Rounds of Honest Comedy") I landed on an even more nauseating program: Real Time With Bill Maher.

Discussing an issue much too complicated for him -- the "Assault Weapons" Ban -- Maher was joined by supposedly conservative author P.J. O'Rourke, black historian and Harvard professor Cornel West, and some foreign blonde actress Julie Delpy.

Maher opened the discussion with the question: Should we have assault weapons in the hands of civilians? I'm guessing he thinks the answer is no, meaning we should just leave them all in the hands of felonious thugs. "Why do you need assault weapons?" he asks. Well, why do we need McDonalds, cigarettes, Coca-Cola, R-rated movies, samurai swords, Hummers, and Internet with access to free porn? Maybe I'm just a fool for believing we Americans have a right to life, liberty and property, and that government has no position in deciding what we do or do not "need". "Why can't you gun-people just admit that it's a vice, like gambling?" A woman who carries a derringer in her purse to defend herself from rapists does not have a vice. A father who keeps a loaded long gun (automatic or not) in his bedroom to protect his family from intruders does not have a vice. (Maher may not understand that we don't all live in his neighborhood). A hobbyist who collects firearms from around the world for his display case does not have a vice.

None of Maher's guests appeared interested in offering counterarguments to his elementary points; O'Rourke replied that letting the gun ban expire was the conservatives' way of getting back at liberals for allowing abortion to remain legal.

The conversation then segued into the election. Maher whined that for the last few months everything has been about Vietnam. "We talk more about Vietnam than Vietnam!" he smirks as the audience roars. "We're obsessed with Vietnam!" Maher fails to mention that it was John Kerry who first brought Vietnam to the front of the stage; touting his military service at the Democratic National Convention.

Maher then criticized Bush for sucking up to voters giving us this wonderful quote: "You'd (Bush) rub lotion on a old Jewish woman's ass if she was registered." More laughter from the crowd ensued.