On Friday's Real Time program on HBO, Bill Maher hosted an interview with Brian Levin, the director of the Center for Study of Hate and Extremism. It became clear within thirty seconds that Levin was not attending the religious parity party he had expected.
One can understand why Levin might harbor such expectations. Maher has a pretty apparent disdain for religious adherents of all stripes. But in that first thirty seconds, Maher spoke, with a pointedly singular focus, of the hypocrisy we witness in such fanatical terrorists as the Tsarnaev brothers, who bombed the Boston Marathon last week. "If you read what the older brother wrote on his, uh, on the internet," Maher began, "it says his worldview: Islam. Personal priorities: career and money. And we see a lot of this; I mean, the 9/11 hijackers went to strip clubs the night before they got on the plane."
Two references to notorious acts of Islamic terrorism were enough for Levin. He interjected by saying that "it's not like people who are Muslims who do wacky things have a monopoly on it. We have hypocrites across faiths, Jewish, Christian, who say they're out for God and end up doing not-so-nice things."