Bill Maher's long anti-Islam history: "To claim that this religion is like other religions is just naive and plain wrong"

The comic has become religion's No. 1 skeptic. Here's how Bill Maher's serious talk about faith became so debated

By Salon Staff
April 16, 2015 7:17PM (UTC)
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Bill Maher in "Real Time with Bill Maher" (HBO/Janet Van Ham)

Fareed Zakaria teed off on Bill Maher on "Real Time" last week for using a war on religion on Islam to generate "applause lines in the West." But Maher has been making his case against religion for years, on "Politically Incorrect" and in a documentary film, in addition to "Real Time." While the frequency of his comments has increased in recent months, especially since the Charlie Hebdo shootings and a debate that went viral with Ben Affleck, there's a long history here to review.

Here are some of Maher's "greatest hits" on the topic -- as well as some of the best retorts.


With guests Michael Moore and Richard Dawkins, Maher suggests liberals are afraid to criticize Muslims "because they’re a minority and because they’re brown. It doesn’t matter. Pernicious beliefs are pernicious beliefs."

Rula Jebreal tells Maher: "When you talk about Islam in a certain way, I have to tell you, it’s offensive sometimes ... And some people feel threatened."


Maher and U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison: The Koran is "a hate-filled holy book."

Bill Maher on Jimmy Kimmel: P.C. has made America a "pussy nation" and “there are no great religions, they’re all stupid and dangerous."

Maher on "Charlie Rose": "To claim that this religion is like other religions is just naive and plain wrong. It is not like other religions."


The famous debate with Ben Affleck and Sam Harris over "radical Islam."

Debating Islam with Cornel West and Mary Matalin.

Maher in September 2014: The Muslim world has "too much in common with ISIS."

On CNN with Anderson Cooper: Islam is "not really a religion of peace"


January 2015: "Only religion could ruin getting high and looking at cartoons."

The latest debate with Fareed Zakaria:

From "Politically Incorrect": "I have made so much more fun of the Bible than I have of the Koran."

Salon Staff

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