James Corden used his platform as host of “The Late Late Show” on Thursday night to address Bill Maher directly over a segment he did last week arguing that “fat-shaming” should be encouraged.
“As I was watching it, I was like, ‘Oh, man. Somebody needs to say something about this. If only there was somebody with a platform who knew what it was actually like to be overweight,’” Corden said. “Then I realized, ‘Ah, that’ll be me.’”
Corden repeatedly stated that he likes and respects Maher, but had issues with this particular segment of his HBO show. “Any time I’ve met Bill Maher in person, he’s been nothing but pleasant and kind and nice, which is why I found it so surprising that he or anybody thinks that fat-shaming needs to make a comeback because fat-shaming never went anywhere. Ask literally any fat person. We are reminded of it all the time.”
In the Sept. 6 episode of “Real Time With Bill Maher,” the outspoken political commentator noted that it was “controversial” to say “being fat is a bad thing” and commented on the idea of “fat acceptance”: “We shouldn’t taunt people about it … but there’s no ‘smoking acceptance’ or ‘drunk acceptance.’”
Representatives for HBO did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
“There’s a common and insulting misconception that fat people are stupid and lazy and we’re not,” Corden said Thursday. “Look, we get it and we know. We know that being overweight isn’t good for us and I’ve struggled my entire life trying to manage my weight and I suck at it. I’ve had good days and bad months. I’ve basically been off and on diets since as long as I can remember and, well, this is how it’s going. But here’s the thing: We’re not all as lucky as Bill Maher. We don’t all have a sense of superiority that burns 35,000 calories a day.”
Still, he said he believes Maher had good intentions, but that “fat-shaming is bullying” and only leads to more shame, anxiety, depression, and self-harming behavior.
“While you’re encouraging people to think about what goes into their mouths, just think a little harder about what comes out of yours,” he concluded.