The Joke Is On Bill Maher

Recently the comedian Bill Maher decided to spend an expensive five minutes of air time attempting to attack my alma mater, Liberty University.

Ignorance is not bliss, it’s just ignorance.

Judging from the polite golf claps of his normally rabid audience, I believe a fair argument can be made that the piece itself simply wasn’t considered to be very funny.

In addition to failing on funny, Maher gets an “F” on his facts.

Toward the end of the piece Maher demonstrates his own ignorance in his compare/contrast of Liberty University with “real” colleges that our founding fathers attended.  Maher’s liberal brain washing has left him with little to no understanding of the irony in his attempt at humor.

Here’s the real humor:  Every college cited as a ‘real’ college was founded by and for the purpose of delivering a distinctively Christian education, the same principle upon which Liberty University was founded in 1971.  This is also the same principle that has caused it to grow into one of America’s largest universities with over 90,000 enrolled students. With a poor attempt at humor, the joke is actually on Maher.  A simple search of each school’s own website easily proves my point.

At the 3:55 mark of his argument against Liberty he says: 
“Sorry, but our Constitution wasn’t divinely inspired. It’s just that the guys who wrote it were smart because they went to real colleges. Thomas Jefferson went to William and Mary, Madison went to Princeton and Alexander Hamilton went to Columbia.”

Let’s take a look at each of those institutions in their own words.  What were they teaching when the founders attended?

“Thomas Jefferson went to William and Mary”

The Royal charter of W&M “Forasmuch as our well-beloved and faithful subjects, con- stituting the General Assembly of our Colony of Virginia, have had it in their minds, and have proposed to themselves, to the end that the Church of Virginia may be furnished with a seminary of ministers of the gospel, and that the youth may be piously educated in good letters and manners, and that the Christian faith may be propagated amongst the Western Indians, to the glory of Almighty God; (

“Madison went to Princeton”

The principles on which Princeton University was founded may be traced to the Log College in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, founded by William Tennent in 1726. Tennent was a Presbyterian minister who, along with fellow evangelists Theodorus Jacobus Frelinghuysen, Jonathan Edwards, Samuel Davies, and George Whitefield of England, preached and taught an approach to religion and life that was the very essence of the Great Awakening period. The seven founders of the College of New Jersey were all Presbyterians, with Ebenezer Pemberton, a minister and a graduate of Harvard, the only one of the seven who did not graduate from Yale. The remaining six included Jonathan Dickinson, Aaron Burr Sr., and John Pierson, who were ministers; William Smith, a lawyer; Peter Van Brugh Livingston, a merchant; and William Peartree Smith. (

“Alexander Hamilton went to Columbia”

Actually, Hamilton went to “Kings College” between 1774 and 1776. Kings was later renamed Columbia. The following timeline from Columbia’s own website shows who founded the University and for what purposes.

May 14 — Trinity Church conditions its offer of land on assurances that college president would always be an Anglican and that official religious services use Anglican liturgy
May 16 — Lottery Commission accepted Trinity Church conditions on land
November 22 — Lottery Commission appointed Samuel Johnson as president of new college; a Massachusetts Congregationalist minister, Chauncey Whittesley, appointed as second master; Assembly withholding lottery funds for what its critics calling an “Anglican seminary”
May 31 — Advertisement for the College of New York published in the New York Gazette by President Johnson; stressed that college welcoming all Protestant Christians
July 17 — Classes began in rectory of school attached to Trinity Church on Rector Street; eight matriculants; Samuel Johnson did all the teaching (

“Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.”

— Edmond Burke

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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10 thoughts on “The Joke Is On Bill Maher

  1. Most of our oldest and renowned schools started from a ministerial need or at the very least, by a Christian backed committee who realized the betterment of mankind. Wherever the Gospel has been preached, people have been fed, educated, slavery abolished and women’s rights have been uplifted. Amazing how the world has turned this completely around. People are quick to point out the Crusades & The Inquisition, which were more political endeavors and fail to see how true Gospel believers have lifted the world out of darkness.

    I tire of buffoons who would mock the Constitution as not having Christian overtones. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights . . .” Was a concept NOT held by the world in 1776. It was however a result of the Gospel in the minds of the authors. (who evidently did not go to real schools either :)

    • Thanks for your comment. Every counter-argument so far has come from made-up email addresses so you’re the first I’ve allowed. Also the rest were fairly incoherent… an obvious demonstration of Maher’s point that evolutionists have all the brain power.

      As to your point… it’s invalid.

      Maher made the case that the constitution has nothing to do with God but rather intelligent people who were influenced at “real” schools. The “real” vs. “fake” argument he made was based on the idea of creationism. Creationism is a THEORY of first-cause just as the ‘big-bang’ is a theory of first cause.

      One can argue against creationism… that’s fine. It’s a rather absurd idea to claim that the founders did not believe in creation but they acknowledged a “Creator”. The entire Declaration of Independence is built upon the concept of a “Creator” who willfully and with intention gives the creation rights. Acknowledging a Creator is acknowledging a first-cause argument.

      We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

      Whenever one group wants to completely shut down debate… there is reason to be skeptical.

      People like Maher and others in the media who majored in Communication, Journalism and “General Studies” love to play the intellectual when discussing things with which they have no demonstrable working knowledge. It’s easy to ‘appear’ intelligent when your entire schtick is attacking others for their views instead of defending your own.

      Finally… those who claim that the theory of evolution is now a “settled” topic may want to tell that to world-renown Neurosurgeon, Dr. Ben Carson of Johns Hopkins Hospital.

      Dr. Carson does not believe in evolution.

      As long as there is a world class brain surgeon who boldly proclaims creationism, I’d say that “the scientific community” is not “settled”… The echo chamber may just be located in the agnostic or atheistic wing.

  2. This seems to be doing nothing more than arguing semantics. There are a lot of holes in Bill Maher argument, but these schools being found on Christian principles isn’t one of them. His attack on the right for a religious institution to promote and teach what they believe true is big one to address. Who does it hurt to believe Creationism is true? In no way does that negativity any facete of any person’s ability to receive a degree and be a competent working professional. Well, maybe unless they went to teaching science at a public institution.

    While there are holes, there is also a lot of truth. Liberty completely values indoctrination over education. They want everyone there to look, act, and say all the “right” things that they think are valid. Which always provided me with a lot of tension and frustration when i went there.

    I’ve always thought that you can tell a lot about a school’s priority’s by the condition of its library. Most Liberal Arts school has incredibly impressive libraries that make you want to spend time in them absorbing as much knowledge as one possibly can, and are filled with an incredible amount of learning resources and information. Liberty’s library (at least when I went there) was a steril, cafeteria-esk, hole in the wall place that did not contain any books written past 1965. That doesn’t read like a place that wants to foster knowledge, but rather a place that spends big money showing off an “impressive” looking Demoss building that is completely unfunctional.

    That’s why I’ve never considered Liberty to be a “real” university. Just the fascade of one in order to get people to conform to their ultra-conservative values.

    • This is one from one of my PowerPoint slides when I teach both Freshman Seminar and Early American Literature at Liberty University. The first 9 colleges in America were all founded by Christian denominations:

      1.Harvard (1636)—founded by Congregationalists.
      2.William & Mary (1693)—founded by Anglicans.
      3.Yale (1701)—founded by Congregationalists.
      4.Princeton (1746)—Founded by Presbyterians.
      5.Penn. (1751)—Founded by Anglicans/Presbyterians.
      6.Columbia (1754)—founded by Anglicans.
      7.Brown (1764)—founded by Baptists.
      8.Rutgers (1766)—founded by Dutch Reformed Protestants.
      9.Dartmouth (1769)—founded by Congregationalists.

    • JF,
      I appreciate the fact that you also used your real identity.

      The tone of your post seems to show some personal problems you have had with faith during your time at LU. According to Facebook (found it while verifying your email address) you are now working while attending a community college. I presume they have a library that meets your standards.

      Here is an article on the new library being built on campus as we speak:

      As for the ‘indoctrination’… I simply disagree. My undergraduate degree is in Government with a pre-law concentration. I had to read every aspect of case law and even argue positions I personally did not agree with on a regular basis. This training allows me to understand many sides of an issue and respect the fact that others see things differently. One of my most enjoyable assignments was arguing a single-payer system for health care (HilaryCare) against one of my peers who held a position the free market approach. We were assigned these positions. By the end of research, presentation and debate the class voted and my position won in a landslide (among indoctrinated students?). I didn’t win because my professors were indoctrinating me. I won because I was able to more persuasively argue my case and present more facts while demonstrating the illogic nature of my opponent’s position.

      I suppose we had different experiences at Liberty. I honestly enjoyed my time. I enjoyed reading not only what I would have read at a state school but also the writings that supported a different take. If anything as I discuss my world view with others I see that most who attend state schools are generally fed one position… a far left position.

      Over 90,000 students are enrolled today. I’m certain among them are people who will also have differing positions. I wish you well.

    • jf steele, You say that Liberty values indoctrination over education, and “They want everyone there to look, act, and say all the “right” things that they think are valid”. I would like to suggest that this is not a problem unique to Christian higher education. The anti-religious bias at US universities is well-documented, and well-qualified teachers (and students) have been black-balled out of academia for not conforming within liberal belief systems. Does this not represent indoctrination over education? Or is that acceptable, as long as the values aren’t Christian?

  3. Just a reminder to my angry friends who are moderated out of the conversation… If you do not have an identifiable email address (meaning that email address can lead me to a profile of yourself somewhere) your comments are not considered open and honest. Some of you are hiding behind false accounts. I’m all for good debate and discussion but not with phantom people.

    I am easily identifiable so I see it only reasonable that you are as well. Otherwise, move on (.org)

  4. I usually stay away from the online debates (since I tend to prefer a face-to-face encounter more), but I couldn’t help commenting on this. I wonder if Maher has checked up on Liberty’s debate team stats… I had the privilege of being on the Debate team for a period of time, and we were ranked #1, just like many years prior and years since, including last year. What do you call a school that consistently outranks & outdebates the “real” schools, including, but not limited to, Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Northwestern, etc.? It’s a wonder that the students who rank #1 in the nation would choose to go to such a joke of a school, right?

    I have never liked Maher, not just because of his ridiculous & baseless arguments, but because he’s just not intelligent. I can appreciate a good debate, I actually enjoy when people don’t agree with me and I have the opportunity to debate. But it’s just not fun debating against someone who lacks the intelligence to actually carry on a decent debate, and who lacks the ability to make a solid, supported statement- instead relying on the liberal left guests on his show to occasionally back him up with an educated response.

    I also studied Government at LU and now work at a top 25 lawfirm in the U.S. Guess it doesn’t hurt to mix a little doctrine in with the education.