By Bill Maher
Not everyone who says something you don't want to hear or who asks you
to do something you don't want to do is a bully. There were two
prominent cases of so-called bullying in the news recently: the obese
news lady from Wisconsin who claims she was bullied
because a viewer wrote in and said, as a public figure and a role
model, she had a "community responsibility" to "present and promote a
healthy lifestyle," and the Iowa JV football coach who got suspended for breaking the district’s anti-bullying and corporal punishment policy because he made one of his players run laps.
October was Bullying Awareness Month, which means something to me
because I was bullied as a child. There was a kid who would beat me up
and take my super-PAC donation money. But, at the risk of making someone
feel bad, and thereby becoming a bully myself, may I suggest there's
been a bit of bully inflation going on?
The Village Voice
and others call Michael Bloomberg's size-restriction on sugary soft
drinks "soda bullying." But Mayor Bloomberg didn't instruct cops to walk
through Manhattan slapping Big Gulps out of people's hands. He simply
recognized that, with one out of every three of our kids either
overweight or obese, perhaps enough soda to fill a small bucket is
adequate for a first helping. No one is saying you can't drink as much
Mountain Dew as you can hold -- they're just saying, for ounces 17
through 32, you have to get your fat ass up out of your seat and waddle
back to the concession stand.
Likewise, scoffing or rolling
your eyes during a debate, as Fox News would have us believe, is not
bullying. No, that's the appropriate social response to weasels telling
lies. Joe Biden expressed ridicule at your candidate's shameless
whoppers -- he didn't hold him down while Martha Raddatz gave him a pink
belly. The ass-kicking was figurative.
Sometimes, for the common
good, you have to hear something you don't want to hear or do something
you don't want to do. Like paying taxes. Or getting off your ass and
taking care of yourself. I'm not talking about law enforcement rolling
up to where you happen to be standing and forcing you to run -- hat's
only in the inner city. I'm talking about something we used to have but
now seem to dismiss -- our social responsibility to one another.