‘Maybe a Suspension’: Media Critic David Zurawik Says HBO ‘Has to Do More’ on Maher

Baltimore Sun media critic David Zurawik spoke with CNN’s Brian Stelter this morning about the massive backlash Bill Maher is getting after he uttered a racial slur on his show Friday.

Stelter said “obviously Bill Maher’s schtick is about being controversial and shocking” before asking if HBO’s apology is enough.

Zurawik didn’t buy the apology attributed to Maher, which said, “Friday nights are always my worst night of sleep because I’m up reflecting on the things I should or shouldn’t have said on my live show. Last night was a particularly long night as I regret the word I used in the banter of a live moment. The word was offensive and I regret saying it and am very sorry.”

“Come on,” Zurawik said, “we’re on live TV. That kind of word comes out of somewhere.”

He talked about how students of color in a class he teaches talked very personally about how hearing that word being used hurts them, before concluding thusly:

“I think HBO has to do more when we come back to work. Maybe a suspension or something. But this is not okay… That word shouldn’t be coming out of the mouth of a guy who’s one of your lead voices of political commentary.”

Watch above, via HBO.

[image via screengrab]

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac