Gloria Steinem appeared on HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher last night for a one-on-one interview with the host to promote her new book, My Life on the Road. And midway through what turned out to be a mostly measured, ten-minute conversation between the 81-year-old feminist icon and a comedian whose track record on women’s issues has always been spotty at best, Maher asked Steinem why she thought so many young women were supporting Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary.
At first, Steinem — who had praised young women’s activism just moments earlier — was cautious. “Women get more radical as we get older,” she said, explaining that women lose power as they age while men gain it, and feeling oppressed radicalizes you. Steinem did not explain why she felt Clinton was a more radical choice for the nomination than Sanders. Instead, the activist who once declared Sanders an “honorary woman” told Maher, “When you’re young, you’re thinking, ‘Where are the boys? The boys are with Bernie?'” Maher immediately realized her statement would be a controversial one — and, indeed, it has already drawn anger from young, female Sanders supporters on social media.
Watch the full interview, which also includes a discussion of Western feminism’s relationship to Islam and Maher’s charming observation that “the woman of the year has a dick,” below.