Bill Maher says he 'doesn't understand' the Harrison Butker backlash

Bill Maher says he 'doesn't understand' the Harrison Butker backlash
Bill Maher says he 'doesn't understand' Harrison Butker backlash

If Travis Kelce is the current golden boy of the Kansas City Chiefs, Harrison Butker is very much the black sheep.

This week, the NFL player was flung to the heart of a social media storm after his graduation speech at a private Catholic school horrified listeners around the world.

In the highly controversial address, Butker covered everything from abortion to Pride Month – which he branded a “deadly sin” – and suggested female graduates should be “most excited” about becoming “homemakers”.

And whilst his teammates, and even the NFL itself, have distanced themselves from his comments, late-night TV host Bill Maher has defended the football star.

Speaking on his show Real Time with Bill Maher on Friday, Maher began by emphasising: “I can't express how much [Butker] is not like me.

“He's religious. He loves marriage. He loves kids… And he's now history's greatest monster.”

Butker has been widely condemned over his comments(Getty Images)

However, Maher went on to admit he didn’t understand why the 28-year-old father-of-two had become the subject of such a furious backlash, particularly regarding his remarks towards women.

To clarify, the placekicker told his female audience at Benedictine College in Kansas: “Some of you may go on to lead successful careers in the world, but I would venture to guess that the majority of you are most excited about your marriage and the children you will bring into this world.

He went on: "I can tell you that my beautiful wife Isabelle would be the first to say that her life truly started when she started living her vocation as a wife and as a mother."

Unpicking the spiel, Maher said he “didn’t get” why it had proven so controversial.

“I don’t see what the big crime is, I really don’t,” he insisted.

“I think this is part of the problem people have with the left is that lots of people in this country are like this,” the political commentator continued.

“Like, he's saying, Some of you may go on to lead successful careers, but a lot of you are excited about this other way that people/everybody used to be’. And now can't that be a choice too?”

He went on to suggest that the public is increasingly made to feel as though “there's only one way to be a good person,” and “that's to get an advanced degree from one of those a**holee factories like Harvard.”

At the end of his discussion, Maher added provocatively: “I find it very ironic that he’s saying, you know what, in my world, we like the women to stay at home and just have babies, and the college kids and the young people find this absolutely abhorrent, but they’re demonstrating for Hamas.”

And, despite the ongoing fury, Maher isn’t the only big name to spring to Butker‘s defence.

Whoopi Goldberg has also defended the football star’s right to free speech, even if she doesn’t share his beliefs.

“I like when people say what they need to say,” she said during Thursday’s episode of The View.

“He’s at a Catholic college, he’s a staunch Catholic. These are his beliefs and he’s welcome to them. I don’t have to believe them, I don’t have to accept them, the ladies that were sitting in that audience don’t have to accept them.”

But, she went on: “[In] the same way we want respect when Colin Kaepernick takes a knee, we want to give respect to people whose ideas are different from ours because the man who says he wants to be president – you-know-who – says the way to act is to take away people’s right to say how they feel. We don’t want to be that. We don’t want to be those people.”

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