- The Washington Times - Saturday, June 12, 2021

Bill Maher was back again this week on the “warped” ideas of woke liberals and its deleterious cultural consequences.

The HBO “Real Time” host blasted the “progressophobia” of young activists, which he said has ironically produced “a growing belief in Whiteness as a malady and White people as irredeemable.”

“That’s the phrase coined by Steven Pinker to describe a brain disorder that strikes liberals and makes them incapable of recognizing progress,” the host said. “It’s like situational blindness, only what you can’t see is that your dorm in 2021 is better than the South before the Civil War. …  Acknowledging progress isn’t saying ‘we’re done’ or ‘we don’t need more,’ and being gloomier doesn’t make you a better person.”

Mr. Maher cited major corporations celebrating Pride Month as one example of progress before returning to race issues.

“There is a recurrent theme on the far left that things have never been worse,” he continued. “Kevin Hart expressed a view many hold when he told The New York Times, ‘You’re witnessing White power and White privilege at an all-time high.’ This is one of the big problems with wokeness — that what you say doesn’t have to make sense or jibe with the facts or ever be challenged, lest the challenge itself be conflated with racism. But saying White power and privilege is at an all-time high is just ridiculous.”

The comedian, perplexed at Mr. Hart’s stance, turned to U.S. history for context.

“Higher than a century ago — the year of the Tulsa race massacre?” he asked. “Higher than the years when the KKK rode unchecked and Jim Crow went unchallenged? Higher than the 1960s when the Supremes and Willie Mays still couldn’t stay in the same hotel as the White people they were working with? Higher than slavery? And I mean actual slavery, not ‘Prince doesn’t like his record contract’ slavery.”

He concluded with a plea to liberals to find a cure to ” this progressive allergy to acknowledging societal advances.” 

“[It’s] self-defeating because progress and hope that we can achieve it is the product we’re selling,” he said. “And having a warped view of reality leads to policies that are warped. Black-only dorms and graduation ceremonies? A growing belief in Whiteness as a malady and White people as irredeemable? Giving up on a colorblind society? Only if you believe we’ve made no progress does any of that make sense.”

Mr. Maher‘s monologue had resonance on social media: as of this writing, a clip of the segment was viewed nearly 500,000 times on Mr. Maher‘s Twitter feed.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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