James Corden Calls Out Bill Maher for Fat-Shaming Comments
"Bill, please hear me when I say this. While you're encouraging people to think about what goes into their mouths, just think a little harder about what comes out of yours," Corden said during Thursday's episode of 'The Late Late Show.'
James Corden opened up about his struggle with his weight as he responded, on Thursday's Late Late Show, to Bill Maher's recent call for fat-shaming to make a comeback.
In a recent episode of Real Time With Bill Maher, the host suggested that fat-shaming should be make a return, in order to lower the obesity rate in the United States.
After Corden shared a clip from the segment, he said that he felt compelled to speak out on the topic because "he knew what it was actually like to be overweight."
"I actually have a lot in common with Bill Maher," he began before he listed that they shoot their shows in the same building, they both host the second most popular talk shows on their respective networks and they have made "questionable choices in [their] film careers."
He added that every time he has met Maher, it was a pleasant experience. "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," he said. "Ask literally any fat person. We are reminded of it all the time on airplanes, on Instagram, when someone leaves a pie on the window sill to cool and they give us a look like, 'Don't. Don't you dare.'"
Corden then touched on the common misconception that fat people are stupid and lazy. "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," he said. "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."
The host also joked that Maher had "a sense of superiority that burns 35,000 calories a day."
"Bill, I sincerely believe that what you think you're offering is tough love and you're just trying to help by not sugarcoating reality for fat people even though you know how much fat people love sugarcoating things," Corden continued. "The truth is that you're working against your own cause. It's proven that fat-shaming only does one thing. It makes people feel ashamed and shame leads to depression, anxiety and self-destructive behavior. Self-destructive behavior like overeating."
Corden also criticized the term fat-shaming. "Fat-shaming is just bullying," he said. "And bullying only makes the problem worse."
After a few more clips from Maher's segment played, Corden called out the host for inaccurately claiming that no obese people live in Europe. "I would like to present Exhibit A," the British host responded as he pointed to himself.
"This entire issue is a lot more complex than he's making it out to be," he said. Corden noted that Maher was correct in calling the obesity epidemic a health problem, but added that Maher didn't consider that issues such as poverty and genetics contribute to the epidemic.
"A lack of shame is not the issue here. If making fun of fat people made them lose weight, there'd be no fat kids in schools and I'd have a six pack by now," Corden continued. "Until we make healthy food and health care more accessible and we properly educate people on nutrition and exercise, maybe we can hold back on the whole 'Call fat people virgins until they lose weight' strategy."
Corden added that he thought Maher's heart was in the right place. "I am aware today that this is going to be a struggle that I will face for the rest of my life," he said. "But in the meantime, Bill, please hear me when I say this. While you're encouraging people to think about what goes into their mouths, just think a little harder about what comes out of yours."
Watch the full segment below.