Ben Affleck clashes with talk show host Bill Maher over Islam

'Gone Girl' star accuses fellow guest and author Sam Harris of racism

Ben Affleck appeared on HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher last Friday during a publicity tour to promote his new film Gone Girl.

A heated debate on the subject of Islam took place between Affleck, author Sam Harris and the show’s host Maher.

Harris said: “We have been sold this meme of Islamophobia, where criticism of the religion gets conflated with bigotry towards Muslims as people. It’s intellectually ridiculous.”

Entertainment Weekly reports that Affleck reacted angrily calling Harris’ message “gross” and “racist”. The actor added: “It’s like saying ‘Oh, you shifty Jew!'”

“We have to be able to criticise bad ideas, and Islam at this moment is the motherlode of bad ideas,” said Harris, who has written several books about world religions.

“It’s the only religion that acts like the mafia – that will fucking kill you if you say the wrong thing, draw the wrong picture, or write the wrong book,” added Maher.

“What is your solution? Just condemn Islam? We’ve killed more Muslims than they’ve killed us, by an awful lot,” challenged Affleck. “We’ve invaded more Muslim countries than they’ve invaded ours, by an awful lot. Yet somehow we’re exempted from these things because they’re not really a reflection of what we believe in. We did it by accident, that’s why we invaded Iraq.”

Watch the debate below.