The First Amendment on a Thursday

So, this young attorney dropped by our office recently, wanting to take his novel theory of defense on a test run, see if it passed the laugh test.  Basically, his client was accused of saying nasty things about the police.  He wanted to put on a First Amendment defense. 


A few weeks later, I ran into said attorney, and asked him how it went.  He just shook his head.  The case was called to the bar of the court.  He laid out his defense, a kind of mini-opening, and the Judge looked at him, cocked his/her head and said, “Mr. Young Attorney, there’s no First Amendment on Friday.”


So Philly!


But, luckily, the First Amendment, even on Friday, is alive and well, and while Ms. California is a total boob, she had every right to say what she said on national television, and had every right to make a fool of herself.


I’m not defending what she said, I’m defending her right to say it.


And saying it should not lead to her being called the “c+*!” word. 


Why on earth does Perez Hilton, a man who makes his living drawing penises on women’s faces, think it’s somehow better to be a mysogynist than a homophobe? 


Shanna Moakler, former Ms. USA, and a self-annointed wise soul, addressed the controversy on her blog, saying, “She lost the crown because she wasn’t able to convey compassion for ALL the people that, as MISS USA, she would be representing,” Moakler wrote. “And if YOU like it or not, gays and lesbians make up this country as well. THIS is why we have judges, so they can find the RIGHT woman who obtains these qualities.”


Hmm. Let me break this down.  First of all, Ms. USA represents no one – she is not elected, she is a beauty pageant winner.  She was picked above all women for looking the best in a bikini, and playing Fur Elise on the harp.  She can go to any country, and say anything, and I could care less – she is not an ambassador, she is not in anyway a representation of my views.  If we’re looking for women ambassadors – we need look no further than Michelle Obama and Hilary Clinton – not elected per se, but definitely they extensions of our vote for the current administration.  Shanna Moakler, my voice around the world?  Not on your life.


Now the second part – “THIS is why we have judges, so they can find the RIGHT woman who obtains these qualities.”  Taking into consideration the above, who cares about judges, when the title means nothing.  But, putting that aside – a judge who calls a woman a “c*&!” is the right man to find the right woman who obtains (hmmm . . . do you think she means embodies?) these qualities? This man, Mr. Penis Drawerer, who has risen to fame denegrating women, and making fun of young starlets who are clearly on the road to nothing short of death because of their untreated mental illnesses and addiciton is the one who is going to look deep into the souls of these contestants and find compassion?   


Look, I’m not knocking profanity  – anyone who knows me knows that in college I wrote a college editorial expounding on the virtues of the f$*&!  word but the “c&$@” word is not simply profanity – it’s a hate word – the same as calling a Jew the “K” word, an African American the “N” word, or any other word that we all accept as socially unacceptable and down right reprehensible. 


And why hasn’t he been called out on this?  Instead, Ms. Cali is laughingly asked to respond to his use of the “c” word – really?  Would this be the spin on the story if Ms. Cali were black and he had called her the “N” word? 


In the end, this is really a trivial controvery – but it really burns me up – that somehow it has become acceptable to use the “c” word on national television, and the purveyor of this hate speech somehow becomes the hero of the media spin on the story.


Sure, the First Amendment protects Hilton’s right to use the “c” word – even on a Friday – but that doesn’t mean that we have to ignore it, pretend he didn’t say it.  His use of the word devalues any other speech that comes out of his mouth, not that it was worth much in the first place.


  1. Bridget April 24, 2009

    I hear you! This is the kind of thing that makes me wonder if I’m the only person in the world who is appalled. I’m glad to know I’m not.

  2. Ida April 27, 2009

    All I can add to your “rant” is AMEN. Thanks.


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