Saturday, October 7, 2017

The Decline of the West: How America Went to Hell With Hugh Heffner

By John Nolte

Breitbart, October 7, 2017: My highest political value, the one that informs everything from my vote to my political activism, is individual liberty. An ideal America is one where every consenting adult is allowed to live their life in whatever way they choose. As long as you do not touch the tip of my nose, feel free to swing your fists however you like.

Hugh Hefner, the founder of Playboy magazine who died last month at age 91, furthered the noble cause of live and let live.  In 1953, when Playboy first launched, ours was a society that not only used the power of the state to outlaw certain behaviors and beliefs, but was one with countless societal scarlet letters, countless stigmas that banished certain kinds of misfits, mostly sexual deviants, from society.

Simply put, and although I disagree with both, I want to live in a country where a flaming homosexual who demands I bake his wedding cake is allowed to serve in Congress alongside a flaming Muslim who believes sodomy should be added to the long list of unhealthy behaviors prohibited by the government. Until a crime is committed, until violence is used or excused, no one in America should face banishment over their beliefs or for living life on their own terms.
Hefner’s example of living on his own terms was that of an American success story, and even if his destiny was one of godless hedonism, as my colleague Joel Pollak wrote last month, he was still the author of that destiny, a man who transformed himself from a maladroit copywriter into a maladroit publisher, and who then spent more than a half-century posing — rather awkwardly — as Ian Flemings’ idea of a pipe-smoking swinger.
Also in the plus column is Hefner’s early support of the Civil Rights movement. Like Marlon Brando and Charlton Heston, Hefner climbed on board that righteous train in the early 60s, before it was cool, and helped to make it cool. And that is no small thing.
Without a doubt, Hefner’s relentless crusade against certain pieties and prejudices removed countless scarlet letters, and that is all good … but that is only 20 percent of his legacy.
The remaining 80 percent unleashed hell.

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