Thursday, March 22, 2012

Intolerable Radio Speech?

Jonathon Seidl reports on a group of Angelenos who, as often obnoxious Bill Maher puts it, "wouldn't get any exercise at all" if they had to stop "throwing conniption fits":

Their idea of "intolerable" radio speech? Referring to the late Whitney Houston by a more vulgar form of the term "crackhead," which may in fact have been slanderous, so far as I know, but nobody seems to be prosecuting the slur as slanderous. Oh, yes, and Rush Limbaugh's reference to a young woman who's publicly identified herself as having no self-control whatsoever as a slut...hello, if "slut" doesn't mean someone so devoid of self-control as to need public assistance to keep her (or him) from littering the world with unwanted babies, what does it mean?

Here's what I find intolerable: censorship. And for those who either love or hate Rush Limbaugh, be it duly noted that his show has been cashing in, for more than twenty years now, on every attempt to censor the show. People like me do not ordinarily take time to listen to the radio in the daytime. If we do turn on the radio, it will be for a local weather emergency update, not "entertainment." But efforts to censor radio shows make us more likely to listen to these shows to support those who produce them. Are none of you old enough to remember when the way to sell a book, play, or movie was to throw in a vulgarity and get it banned in Boston?