Sunday, November 2, 2014

Bill Maher Commencement Speech Controversy Is a Pink-Wash

I previously posted the debate between Sam Harris, Maher, and Ben Affleck here, and now the last week has seen some movement on the topic again.
This began last week when a Change.Org petition was created by Khwaja Ahmed, calling for the UC Berkley selection of Bill Maher at their December commencement address to be reversed.
What is truly disgusting is the moment where Maher asks about being gay in Gaza.  This trope is called 'pink washing', trying to use a country's gay rights laws to justify other abuses.  In this case, the reality is that the Palestinians have fewer laws and social infrastructures for LGBTQQ people, but this is due, first and foremost, to a form of colonialism and oppression that targets queer and straight Palestinians EQUALLY.  The delusion Maher is harboring is that Israelis are extremely humane in this regard, perhaps even to the point where there are queer couples in Tel Aviv adopting runaway queer youths that run in terror from barbaric parents in Gaza City.  Quite the opposite.

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