By Katie Kieffer
If you felt like you were watching an episode of South Park instead of the signing of Obamacare into law when Vice President Biden famously pronounced, “This is a f-ing big deal,” you had good reason. The f-bomb is like oxygen for the cartoon characters in Comedy Central‘s animated sitcom that is currently ensnared in a free speech controversy.
South Park’s creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone keep nothing off-limits. South Park has found fans by refusing to play political games and by poking fun at grown ups who act worse than children by telling other grown ups what to do.
Remember when Parker and Stone brought us the movie, “Team America: World Police, Putting the “F” back in Freedom?” In this movie, South Park’s creators took Hollywood elitists like Michael Moore to task for thinking they have the solutions to the world’s problems and ridiculed American politicians who try to police the world.
Apparently, Parker and Stone are unimpressed by self-aggrandizing socialites like Hugh Hefner and Gov. Schwarzenegger who pulled $12.5 million together, not for charity, but to “preserve” the historical Hollywood sign from urban sprawl. Stone once famously said that he and Parker are, “more right-wing than most people in Hollywood,” and “I hate conservatives, but I really (expletive) hate liberals.”
Make no mistake, Parker and Stone take shots at both the right and the left. They have targeted nearly every religion with their satire. But, what they also do, is fearlessly thumb their noses at politically correct (PC) culture, elitist snobbery and bureaucracy. Watch Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart explain the current controversy that South Park’s creators find themselves in for ignoring PC culture and exercising free speech:
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c|
|South Park Death Threats|
In the third video below, Parker and Stone discuss their fearless philosophy behind depicting the Prophet Muhammad in South Park’s 200th episode, which compiled some of the sitcom’s most controversial moments over time. They depicted the Prophet in their “Super Best Friends” episode in 2001, and again after the Danish Cartoon controversy in 2006 (although Comedy Central refused to air the full image in 2006). So, Parker and Stone included a caricature of the Prophet, hidden in a bear suit, in South Park’s 200th episode.
But, when a radical New York-based Muslim group sent threatening messages to Parker and Stone, Comedy Central ended up pulling episode 200 from online streaming channels and also released an “episode 201″ depicting “censored” images of the Prophet Muhammad.
Whether or not you enjoy South Park’s potty humor and dark satire, the politically incorrect sitcom is an example of what free speech fosters: Creativity, open dialogue, discussion and debate. Disagree with South Park’s message if you will, but please don’t have the audacity to live in New York, enjoying American freedoms, and then dole out death threats to American artists who exercise the right of free speech.
We need to preserve South Park’s free speech in order to help preserve all free speech. Not to steal South Park’s (and Biden’s) favorite letter, but it’s time to put the “F” back in free speech.