Tuesday, May 31, 2011

What's Really Bothering Larry Flynt?

[Sarah Palin] knew from the first month of pregnancy that kid [her three-year-old son Trig] was going to be Down’s Syndrome. It’s brain dead. A virtual vegetable. She carries it to all these different political events against abortion, she did it just because she didn’t want to say she’d had an abortion. How long is it going to live? Another 12, 15 years? Doesn’t even know it’s in this world.

Larry Flynt in an interview with Johann Hari, Independent, May 27, 2011

Larry Flynt

Let’s leave politics aside. I want to look at the bigger picture here. I don’t even want to bring abortion into this. I haven’t been able to get Larry Flynt’s sickening statement out of my mind since I read it.

Flynt, if you’ve never heard of him (lucky you), is the producer of hardcore pornographic videos, the publisher of numerous pornographic magazines, including Hustler, and a self-described free-speech advocate (because nothing says free speech like downloaded porn).

Here’s the curious thing. Flynt wasn’t asked about Palin’s son Trig in the interview. He freely, without a hint of reluctance, gave his opinion on the child. The subject of Trig must have been eating away at him for some time for that comment to fly out of his mouth "a propos of nothing," as the interviewer notes.

Of course, this is the man who, in the same interview with Hari, describes his first sexual experience as that of having intercourse with a chicken when he was nine years old. He so injured the chicken that he had to kill it afterward. (Hari asked him if he felt sorry for the chicken. "What?" Flynt replied. "No. It was a chicken.") Obviously this "advocate" has been deeply disturbed since childhood.

So what’s really bothering Flynt? Does little Trig’s presence on Earth actually distress him? I’ve thought about this, and I think, when you get down to the nitty gritty, Flynt can’t stand the thought that someone chose life and goodness over death and self-interest.

Goodness to Flynt is like Dorothy’s bucket of water to the Wicked Witch of the West—and this is especially true if that goodness becomes public. Thus Flynt thinks that Palin is carrying her child to political events to make a political point. It would never occur to him that Trig, as her child, belongs with her, just as her other children do. He doesn’t think like that. He needs to grasp for explanations outside decent, loving behavior.

Goodness is an affront to Flynt. It is a mirror, and he doesn’t like what he sees in it. Somewhere in his shriveled soul, he knows the depths to which he has sunk. How can someone choose to give birth to a Down syndrome child? It must bewilder him. For his own peace of mind, he has to see that choice as something other than an act of love. He’s not capable of such an act, so in his mind no one else is, and if they appear to be capable of it, it’s a put-on, a ploy.

In Flynt’s upside-down world, he’s not the problem. He’s a freethinker, a crusader, a wise-cracking guy fighting for free speech. No, the problem is women who knowingly give birth to mentally or physically challenged children. Or believe in God. Or believe women should be treated with dignity. How weird are they?

So Larry Flynt calls evil good and good evil (Isaiah 5:20). He marinates in the battery acid of a life lived poorly, the knowledge that there are people out there who choose light over dark gnawing at him. I’m not sure he could live in his own skin if he didn’t ridicule decency and goodness. And in the end, that makes him a man to be pitied.



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6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I wish this man and others like him could watch my 8-year-old nephew play baseball (on a regular team) and get solid hits, adding RBIs to the score, and run the bases sporting the biggest grin! Or see his teammates cheer him on as he dribbles a soccer ball downfield and scores a goal. Or hear him read "Green Eggs and Ham" or proudly do a "smart board" presentation to his 2nd grade class about rabbits - where they live, what they eat, how many babies they have - and provide a live demonstration with his own pet. How sad that there is still such ignorance in the world today. People with Down Syndrome are winning music competitions (NOT just for disabled participants, going to college, teaching preschool, earning their way in the world, living independently and leading full lives. Thank God for these wonderful, special, hard-headed, loving, talented individuals who just happen to have an extra chromosome.

Karin Kaufman said...

Amen, Anonymous! The thing that made me most angry about Flynt's comment, the thing I found almost impossible to express, was that he couldn't see the value in Trig--just because Trig is different. He couldn't see that little boy's precious SOUL. And his ignorance--actually saying Trig didn't know he was in the world!--made him cruel. People with Down syndrome lead full, long lives, and they are of infinite value to God--and to those who love them. Thank you for posting about your nephew. I'd love to hear him read "Green Eggs and Ham"!

Cynthia Bruner said...

After reading your post I began to wonder what his definition of a valuable (as in, worth living, I suppose) person is...not sure I want the answer to that.

Karin Kaufman said...

Cynthia, I'm not sure I'd want to hear the answer either. I imagine Flynt sees little value in anyone other than himself.

TJ said...

What amazes me...is that I have never seen an unhappy "Down Syndrome" PERSON. Yes, happy, and yes, a person! People that cannot understand simple pleasures in life, like monogamy and no need for pornography, are not the people I want to hear give advice on what a mother should and shouldn't do when it comes to a LIFE. These are the same people who claim a woman has the right to do with her body what she wants. I guess when a woman decides to keep a partially-disabled child she loses that right???

Karin Kaufman said...

TJ, the amazing thing is, Larry Flynt has been giving advice a lot lately, mostly on TV, and those who interview him always have this "wink, wink" attitude when they talk to him, as if he's just Good Ol' Larry and not, in fact, who he really is--a very sick man who shouldn't be supplied with a microphone for anything, let alone for giving advice.

So very few people were outraged when he called this child (and by extension, any child with Down syndrome) a "virtual vegetable." Your outrage is totally appropriate and very welcome.

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