Celebrities seem to operate under their own set of rules – Bill Maher is proof of that.
While the #MeToo movement highlighted the seriousness of sexual harassment and assault, Maher, the host of HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher,” took a decidedly lower road.
In a new tweet, Maher joked about former Senator Al Franken’s groping incident against Leann Tweeden by spoofing it in a photo. Franken resigned from Congress this week over the incident.
In the picture, Maher pretends to grope Bob Saget while he sleeps. “These New Years Hawaii trips are getting weird – Saget, forgive me,” he says in the tweet, posted Thursday. Not surprisingly, Maher has suffered little criticism for joking about sexual assault.
Maher was flying private with Bob Saget when he snapped the shot reaching out for Saget’s man boobs. No doubt he nailed the pic, it’s a dead-on recreation of Franken pretending to grope a sleeping Leeann Tweeden in 2006 — the photo that eventually forced the Senator to resign.
Here’s the thing … most would say Franken’s fair game — but would Leeann laugh it off? Maher’s catching some flak for the photo, which he had to expect.
But with this coming directly on the heels of Dave Chappelle’s jokes about Kevin Spacey and Louis C.K.’s victims — seems like comedians are no longer saying “too soon.”
Here is Maher’s tweet.
These New Years Hawaii trips are getting weird – Saget, forgive me! pic.twitter.com/UgehBTmIUv
— Bill Maher (@billmaher) January 4, 2018
The responses ran the spectrum – most of Maher’s supporters, who skew liberal, loved the picture. Many took the opportunity to defend Franken and slam Tweeden. “I cannot believe Al Franken had to resign over a joke? People cannot even take a joke these days? His apology was heartfelt, enough for him to resign why cannot people learn to forgive and to forget? But the president on the other hand gets to be president? Why,” Michael Filler asked.
Others did not care for the flippant attitude towards sexual misconduct. “Jokes about sexual misconduct are: easy, not funny, offensive,” tweeted John Lombardo.