Actress and comedian Sarah Silverman responded to Bill Maher and other colleagues who deride college audiences as being too “politically correct” in an interview with Vanity Fair magazine posted on Monday.
“To a degree, everyone’s going to be offended by something, so you can’t just decide on your material based on not offending anyone,” she said. “But, I do think it’s important — as a comedian, as a human — to change with the times, to change with new information. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with changing with the times. I think it’s a sign of being old when you are put off by that.”
As an example, Silverman brought up her own issues using the term “gay” as a pejorative years ago.
“I stopped myself and said, ‘What am I fighting? I have become the guy from 50 years ago who said, ‘I say colored, I have colored friends,'” she told senior West Coast editor Krista Smith.
“You have to listen to the college-aged, because they lead the revolution,” Silverman also said. “They’re pretty much always on the right side of history.”
However, Silverman did add one complaint about performing in front of college audiences.
“The thing that bums me out sometimes is, it’s a sea of iPhones, and because comedy is something where you’re connecting,” Silverman explained. “It’s a bummer because you just end up saying your jokes to a sea of empty vessels through which Facebook expresses itself.”
Maher was the subject of a petition by students at the University of California-Berkeley last year asking him to be disinvited from speaking at the school’s commencement ceremony for his “offensive” remarks regarding Islam.
He later complained that he was being criticized by people “who had never gone to Berkeley.”
Watch the interview, as published on Monday, below.