George Carlin Changed Comedy And Made History

Posted by | June 23, 2008 11:13 | Filed under: Top Stories

That is the theme of the fitting tribute in Time Magazine.  When he stopped doing one-liners and commercial parodies and began talking about Vietnam, sex, and language, it was considered radical.  Funny how today the things he was doing earlier in his career seem so tame.

Carlin saw the stand-up comic as a social commentator, rebel and truthteller. He challenged conventional wisdom and tweaked the hypocrisies of middle-class America. He made fun of society’s outrage over drugs, for example, pointing out that the “drug problem” extends to middle-class America as well, from coffee freaks at the office to housewives hooked on diet pills. He talked about the injustice of Muhammad Ali’s banishment from boxing for avoiding the draft – a man whose job was beating people up losing his livelihood because he wouldn’t kill people: “He said, ‘No, that’s where I draw the line. I’ll beat ’em up, but I don’t want to kill ’em.’ And the government said, ‘Well, if you won’t kill people, we won’t let you beat ’em up.'”

George’s “Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television” wound up as a Supreme Court case when they were broadcast on WBAI in New York, resulting in television creating a “family hour.”  In his own words:

“There are no bad words,” said Carlin. “Bad thoughts. Bad intentions. And woooords.”

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Copyright 2008 Liberaland
By: Alan

Alan Colmes is the publisher of Liberaland.

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