Bill Maher Says Parents Ought to be Blamed for Police Using Excessive Force On Children

Janet Van Ham/HBO
Janet Van Ham/HBO

While talking about the recent body slamming of a student by a South Carolina police officer, the comedian pointed a finger at parents.

At the beginning of last night’s show, Maher strutted on stage with the gait of a well-hung silverback, hair combed straight back as though he had a gunfight to get to and couldn’t be bothered styling it. 

He did, of course, have a fight – mostly with the GOP presidential wannabes and their hackneyed, botched CNBC debate. But beyond the standard insults and riffing, it was police brutality against kids that saw the liberal thought leader get his hackles up. Unfortunately, the comedian-cum-commentator missed his mark entirely.

He blamed the parents. 

Surrounded by a sweaty, tense-seeming David Spade, who was there promoting a memoir, and his weekly guest panel – Roger Stone, who holds the dubious honor of once being Trump’s senior advisor and is also an author, Grover Norquist, the president of Americans for Tax Reform, and Democratic California Congresswomen Maxine Waters – Maher lit into today’s parenting, or lack thereof, as the root cause of the sudden uptick of police assaulting children that has ridden a wave of headlines.

“I have sympathy for people in authority because I think parents just let kids do anything these days…” he mused. “Am I wrong? Parents aren’t doing their job? It’s overzealous policing and under zealous parents?”

The host’s hypothesis was pegged to the recent brutal body slamming of a high school student by a South Carolina police officer while in her classroom, which was caught on bystander video and led to the officer being fired.

Representative Waters came in with a heated defense of the victims of police violence. Even slack jawed Spade managed to drag himself from his stupor, defending parents by saying that sometimes they may go easy, but it’s because they don’t want to look bad to other parents. Maher pushed on, saying that it’s parents constantly negotiating with children rather than drawing firm lines that lead to the lack of respect for authority. He claimed a disconnect exists between the parents and teachers. 

Which may be the case – but are we really to accept that helicopter parenting is the root cause of power hungry cops reacting with intense aggression to teenagers? Should a girl who refuses to leave her desk in a classroom be smashed against the ground and dragged, with her desk, by a police officer just to show her who’s boss?

Of course not.

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SOURCE: The Daily Beast – James Joiner