Comments from those we care about regarding Jerry Falwell

I can’t say that Great minds think alike so much as like-minded minds think alike.  Hence I saw a post on Reason that asked Who you desire to hear from concering the death of Jerry Falwell… Larry Flynt, Christopher Hitchens, Fred Phelps, and … Tinky Winky.  I myself left out Fred Phelps because his addition to the memorial was incredibly predictable, and not particularly witty as anything Hitchens would say — ie: God killed him off; we will be picketing the funeral; yee-ha!
James spared me the embarrassment of leaving a search for Larry Flynt in the cache.  Flynt said:

My mother always told me that no matter how much you dislike a person, when you meet them face to face you will find characteristics about them that you like. Jerry Falwell was a perfect example of that.

I hated everything he stood for, but after meeting him in person, years after the trial, Jerry Falwell and I became good friends. He would visit me in California and we would debate together on college campuses. I always appreciated his sincerity even though I knew what he was selling and he knew what I was selling.

The most important result of our relationship was the landmark decision from the Supreme Court that made parody protected speech, and the fact that much of what we see on television and hear on the radio today is a direct result of my having won that now famous case which Falwell played such an important role in.

Christopher Hitchens has a slate article, but I zero in on his interview with Anderson Cooper yesterday (which the right – wing blogosphere is apoplectic about):

The empty life of this ugly little charlatan proves only one thing, that you can get away with the most extraordinary offenses to morality and to truth in this country if you will just get yourself called reverend. Who would, even at your network, have invited on such a little toad to tell us that the attacks of September the 11th were the result of our sinfulness and were God’s punishment if they hadn’t got some kind of clerical qualification?

People like that should be out in the street, shouting and hollering with a cardboard sign and selling pencils from a cup. The whole consideration of this — of this horrible little person is offensive to very, very many of us who have some regard for truth and for morality, and who think that ethics do not require that lies be told to children by evil old men, that we’re — we’re not told that people who believe like Falwell will be snatched up into heaven, where I’m glad to see he skipped the rapture, just found on the floor of his office, while the rest of us go to hell….

COOPER: Do you believe he believed what he spoke?

HITCHENS: Of course not. He woke up every morning, as I say, pinching his chubby little flanks and thinking, I have got away with it again.
And Tinky Winky?

To be honest, that’s not the funniest Tinky Winky parody.  I’ll have to look for the superior one.

One Response to “Comments from those we care about regarding Jerry Falwell”

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