Elon Musk, SpaceX and Twitter CEO, sat down with comedian Bill Maher on Friday night for an interview on “Real Time.”
“You have talked about this ‘woke mind virus’ in really apocalyptic terms,” Maher said. “You should explain why you don’t think it’s hyperbole to say things like it’s ‘pushing civilization towards suicide.’ First of all, what is the Woke mind virus? And if we don’t deal with this, nothing else can get done.”
Elon Musk and Bill Maher discuss the Woke Mind Virus and free speech.
“I can’t emphasize this enough. We must protect free speech… the thing about censorship, for those who advocate for it, at some point that will be turned on you.”
The woke mind virus “has been going on for… pic.twitter.com/9UE9mXj0kQ
— Collin Rugg (@CollinRugg) April 29, 2023
“I think we need to be very cautious about anything that is anti-meritocratic and anything that results in the suppression of free speech,” Musk responded. “So, you know, those are two other aspects of the Woke mind virus that I think are very dangerous is that it’s anti-meritocratic. You can’t question things. Even the questioning is bad. So, you know, another way… [it’s almost synonymous] with Cancel Culture.”
“And obviously people have tried to cancel you many times,” Musk quipped, drawing audience laughter.
“Yes, many times. Every week,” Maher jested. “From left and right, I’ve had it from both sides.”
.@elonmusk: “My concern with Twitter was that it is somewhat of the digital town square, and it’s important there be both reality and perception of trust for a wide range of viewpoints, and there was a lot of censorship going on, and we uncovered a lot that with the Twitter… pic.twitter.com/HZaoUndsjC
— KanekoaTheGreat (@KanekoaTheGreat) April 29, 2023
“My concern with Twitter was that it is somewhat of the digital town square, and it’s important there be both reality and perception of trust for a wide range of viewpoints, and there was a lot of censorship going on, and we uncovered a lot that with the Twitter Files, including a lot of government-driven censorship,” he added.
During their conversation, Maher and Musk discussed the big tech CEO’s acquisition of Twitter. Maher expressed his understanding of why the billionaire would want to own the social media platform, citing it as one of the the “big civilizational issues and problems” facing American society today.
“I really can’t emphasize this enough, we must protect free speech … The thing about censorship — for those who advocate for it — at some point, it will be turned on you,” Musk said.
Follow Kyle Becker on Twitter @kylenabecker.