Bill Maher Belittles Woke Culture: It ‘Becomes a Joke When You’d Rather Rename It Than Solve It’

“Real Time” host says the practice of changing language to change the way people think is not a great idea

Bill Maher

Bill Maher is riding the down-with-“woke” bandwagon again, saying on his Friday night HBO series “Real Time” that the culture once established to mean “politically and socially aware” has become “a joke” for coming up with new words for old things.

A recent article written by George Packer for The Atlantic criticized the Sierra Club’s “Equity Language Guide,” which it says is to “demonstrate our commitment to equity, justice, and inclusion by using respectful, thoughtful language in all of our communications.” Among its suggestions are to refrain from using words like “Americans,” “blind” and “crazy.”

“He mentioned, I think, ‘felon’ is now ‘justice involved person,’” Maher said. And his examples didn’t begin and end there. He also cited the “death tax,” which used to be called “estate tax.” And last week, Maher asked Sen. Bernie Sanders what the difference between “equity” and “equality” was in his view, and Sanders said he wasn’t sure he knew.

“Bernie, you’re not alone,” Maher said in his latest episode. “I can’t find anybody who actually knows.”

“It’s one thing for language to change organically, which it should and does, and you can’t stop it,” Maher continued. “You know, most of Shakespeare is indecipherable because it’s 400 years ago. We don’t use those words anymore. And the dictionary every year puts out an edition with ‘these are new words.’ But there are new words because people just organically started using new words. It’s not like the dictionary says, ‘Here’s a bunch of words we’re commanding you to use now.’”

And that is what Maher feels has happened because of woke culture.

“That’s what’s going on now,” he said. “There’s an order that comes from a small group of people, we don’t know who they are, we can’t ask. It comes from on high. And they’re saying, ‘You need to say Latinx now,’ and you need to say, you know, ‘person experiencing homelessness.’ And I feel like this is why woke becomes a joke because you’d rather rename it than solve it.”