At the Perfunction blog, Cuffy Meigs spots this full throttle defense of the First Amendment from John Cougar Mellencamp, who says:
“I don’t think people fought and gave their lives so that some guy can sit in his bedroom and be mean. I don’t think that’s what freedom of speech is,” he continued. “Freedom of speech is really about assembly — for us to collectively have an idea. We want to get our point of view out so we can assemble and I can appoint you to be the spokesman. That’s freedom of speech — to be able to collectively speak for a sector of people. But somehow it’s turned into ‘I can be an asshole whenever I feel like, say whatever I like, be disrespectful to people and not be courteous.’ It’s not good for our society. Not being courteous is not really freedom of speech. …
Because mean people suck. Including Cougar himself, Cuffy notes, quoting this flashback to 2004:
Whoopi Goldberg delivered an X-rated rant full of sexual innuendoes against President Bush last night at a Radio City gala that raised $7.5 million for the newly minted Democratic ticket of John Kerry and John Edwards. Waving a bottle of wine, she fired off a stream of vulgar sexual wordplays on Bush’s name in a riff about female genitalia, and boasted that she’d refused to let Team Kerry clear her material.
Other celebs also competed to bash Bush. Singer John Mellencamp sang a specially written song that called the president “just another cheap thug” and ridiculed him as the “Texas bambino.” [ed — the title of Mellencamp’s “little diddy” is actually “Texas Bandito”.]
But hey, was free speech over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?