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The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Poll: How do you feel about Bill Maher? (One parent sure doesn’t like him)

Is Bill Maher too racy for GW? One parent e-mailed in to say he thought the Colonials Weekend headliner was not suitable entertainment. Photo used under Creative Commons License.

Updated 5:44 p.m.

The announcement that comedian Bill Maher will headline Colonials Weekend this year seems to have started a bit of controversy to match the jokester’s reputation.

In an e-mail sent to “Peter,” – Dean of Students Peter Konwerski – an executive assistant in the Office of Parent Services said she received “another email message” from a parent about the choice of entertainment.

Except Leah Small didn’t send the e-mail to Konwerski. Instead, she accidentally sent it GW’s official parent listserv.

“There aren’t many people I can think of that completely turn me off, but he’s on that short list,” the parent said in his e-mail. “I could not help offering my opinion on the selection, it galls me that much.”

“During the course of this correspondence, an email from a parent was accidentally sent to a larger group,” Konwerski said. “On behalf of GW I apologize, particularly to the family who had their response sent more broadly. It was a mistake that we will do our best to avoid in the future.”

No word yet from GW’s media shop if the unintended use of a mass listserv will again prompt GW to decrease the people with the power to click ‘send’ on e-mails to listservs.

Maher has made a name ripping on any and all politicians he finds to be ridiculous. At times though, his commentary might cross the line between funny and racist or sexist, depending on where your personal line is. The comedian is also the star of the religion-bashing film, “Religulous.”

Konwerski said the University has received more positive than negative feedback after announcing Maher will perform, adding that families will have a variety of activities available if they do not wish to see the headliner. He said students and alumni have also expressed approval of his selection, and “while he certainly has an edgier side to his humor, many do find him funny and insightful.”

He declined to provide a breakdown of the numbers on how many positive versus negative responses the University has received.

But, what do you think? Is Maher’s scandalous past too much for GW? Take our poll and expand on it in the comment sections.

– Priya Anand contributed this report

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