Piers Morgan: The First Amendment Shouldn't Apply to 'Vile Bigots' Like Phil Robertson

Posted: Dec 20, 2013 11:19 AM
Piers Morgan: The First Amendment Shouldn't Apply to 'Vile Bigots' Like Phil Robertson

Deep constitutional thoughts from CNN's (soon-to-be former?) foreign anchor:

Katie, Mary Katharine and Ed have all weighed in on the Duck Dynasty flap that's dominated the political news cycle for the last 36 hours, so I won't recapitulate the particulars -- but Morgan's preening assertion is instructive. He doesn't care for "assault rifles," so he thinks they should be banned for everyone else. He doesn't enjoy "vile bigotry," so his instinct is to strip constitutional protections from people whose words cross that line -- as defined by Piers Morgan, of course. Were Robertson's comments perhaps a bit crude? Sure. Did rattling off a list of sins invite furious denunciations of "comparing" X with Y, and paint-by-numbers "outrage" (see GLAAD's borderline-unresponsive condemnation)? Obviously. If Robertson were, say, running for public office, his inelegant phrasing might have different implications. But he's a self-described "Bible-thumping" redneck speaking candidly about his beliefs -- and doing so, by the way, while stressing that it's not his role to judge anyone. His follow-up statement on the contretemps was gracious. Are we at the stage where tolerance and kindness are insufficient? Have we crossed the threshold into the realm of enforced celebration? Enthusiastically embrace my values, or you're a vicious bigot, unworthy of free speech rights! Sorry, Piers, but that's not America. After enduring a torrent of Twitter criticism about his warped understanding of the entire notion of constitutional protections, Morgan backed off. A little:

That's not what he tweeted initially, but whatever. It's unclear what good 'ol Piers actually believes in this case. What is clear is that he desperately craves attention. Maybe that's what coming in a distant third-place, night after night, does to a man. I'll leave you with a few thoughts: