Adios, George Carlin

You likely know by now that legendary comedian and trouble-maker George Carlin has died. Our friend the illusory tenant has a smart tribute to Carlin up, which reminds me of what I heard on the radio the other night. Thinker, political analyst, and author Michael Parenti (his latest is Contrary Notions) was reading at Cody’s Books some time before they closed this month, and said that under our constitutional protection of free speech, things such as “I love my mom” will never be fought against, it will never be repressed. It’s things the what George Carlin said that do get repressed, that do get censored, be it officially or unofficially, by government watchdogs or by an editor’s scruples and sense of what’s right or wrong. If you need to see what I mean, look at mr. tenant’s entry on Carlin. He’s got pictures posted from when George Carlin was arrested here in Milwaukee in 1972 after his performance at Summerfest. (The charges were later dismissed.) In short, saying “God is good” will not be shut down. But what Carlin said about religion was fought against, making him into an invaluable fighter for free speech. I will mourn him for that more than anything.


Author: Jason Haas

Jason is an elected member of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors, occasionally moonlights as an amateur gardener, and is a proud father of two, or three, depending on how you do the math.