What does it say when porn-peddler and sex-shop owner Larry Flynt treated Jerry Falwell’s death with more class than CNN? As Newsbusters reported yesterday, during “Anderson Cooper 360,” CNN used a still from an old protest video that had a large illustration of Jerry Falwell next to a large illustration of Hitler.
Despite being courtroom and media adversaries that was kicked into overdrive when Flynt ran a fake ad in “Hustler,” which claimed that Falwell’s first sexual experience was with his mother in an outhouse and resulted in a lawsuit producing a landmark First Amendment ruling by the US Supreme Court, allowing the parody of public figures, Flynt issued this surprisingly generous and thoughtful statement to "Access Hollywood" on May 15 (emphasis mine):
The Reverend Jerry Falwell and I were arch enemies for fifteen years. We became involved in a lawsuit concerning First Amendment rights and Hustler magazine. Without question, this was my most important battle – the l988 Hustler Magazine, Inc., v. Jerry Falwell case, where after millions of dollars and much deliberation, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled in my favor.
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.
Now how difficult would it have been for certain members of the media to be this polite and pleasant? Instead, along with many other fellow reporters, Diane Sawyer used the “some say” technique to call him “intolerant” and say that he will soon “answer to his maker” for his bigotry, the McClatchy publishing company's Washington Bureau and many of the networks misstated that he supposedly outed Tinky Winky the Teletubby as gay and MSNBC anchor Contessa Brewer quoted a left wing website’s anti-Falwell parody page as a legitimate source. Then there were the "progressive" blogs...
Ah, if only Anderson Cooper and Diane Sawyer had the culture and decorum of Larry Flynt, King of Porn.
Contact Lynn with tips or just to complain at tvisgoodforyou2 AT yahoo DOT com