Behind the Bastards

There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.

Part Two: Jerry Falwell: Founder of the Religious Right

Part Two: Jerry Falwell: Founder of the Religious Right

Thu, 05 Dec 2019 11:00

Robert is joined again by Sofiya Alexandra to continue discussing Jerry Falwell.

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Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break or handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her impactful behavioural discoveries on chimpanzees. It wasn't until one of the chimpanzees began to lose his fear of me, but I began to really make discoveries that actually shook the scientific world. Survive on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. Hey, it's Bobby Bones from the Bobby cast. We are Nashville's most listened to music podcast in depth interviews with your favorite country artists, plus the biggest songwriters and producers in Nashville, all from the comfort of my own home so it gets a little more laid back. They're sharing stories behind the biggest songs in country music and personal stories that you will not hear anywhere else. So if you love country music, I think you will love this podcast. Listen to the Bobby cast. On iHeartRadio, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to podcast. What stolen back my sling from Sophie. I'm Robert Evans, host behind the ******** and I have stolen back the bagel flinging sling that Sophie stole from me and will very soon use it in a way that is damaging to both property and people. Also, this is a podcast where occasionally we talk about bad people, but more often than not these days I just do increasingly reckless things because no one has stopped me. Ohh, been cancelled yet? Oh you, you, you are in cancel Vania as we determined last episode. And tell us who your roommates are currently. Well, I'm living with Louis CK, which is, let me tell you, pretty uncomfortable. Yeah, Miles didn't love him as a roommate. No, he was in Pennsylvania. No, no, not great. OK, not great. Also. Bad at cleaning. I'll give it. You know what? I'll go to him. Cooks a pretty decent omelet. Not a bad omelet cooker. OK. You know, everyone's got positives and negatives. Never cleans the toilet. I would expect that. And Louis CK can damage a toilet. Let me tell you, I believe it. You know who else who could damage a toilet? Jerry Falwell and Ronald Reagan. Those Jelly beans did not come out smooth. I don't know why we're talking about poop. That's because you're an odd duck. And I followed you. Yep. Yep. Yeah. To the poop. To the poop. That's what my good friend follow you. That's the true meaning of friendship. That's how you know it's real. That's how you know it's real. Speaking of real. This is a bad lead in Ronald Reagan today is such an icon among the religious right that it's easy to forget he wasn't always viewed this way. You have to remember that back before his eight years in office, before his monstrous and unforgivable failure to respond to the AIDS epidemic, Reagan had a reputation for being a somewhat libertine Playboy movie star. He had tons of gay friends. He was plugged into the Hollywood set. Reagan had long been conservative, but he was not seen as a member of the Religious Right. Of course, some of that had to do with the fact that the religious right did not really exist when Reagan. In politics. Jimmy Carter, on the other hand, was and is a deeply devout evangelical Christian. Even today, at age roughly 170, he spends most of his free time building houses for the poor. The fact that the moral majority and the bulk of American evangelical Christians broke for Reagan in the 1980 election was a strange, novel development on this subject, Doug Banwart writes. Although Reagan was not the perfect conservative, he was better than Carter, who had not accomplished significant legislation or executive orders to appease the evangelical community. Bruce Bursum wrote that the moral majority was pinning its hopes on Ronald Reagan and the presidential election. The moral majority, Christian voice, and other Christian political organizations hope that they could have a real evangelical social conservative on which they could depend in the White House. Carter was not sufficient, so Carter's crying right now. He's like, I was not sufficient. Yeah, I mean, Jimmy Carter made the mistake of actually like, like, like, like, like reading about the stuff Jesus said and and and interpreting it in a positive way and using it as like, oh, I should probably take care of the poor, poor people and the disenfranchised. Exactly. Whereas Jerry Falwell read it and said, well, clearly black people aren't supposed to go to school with white kids. And Reagan was like, oh, I think mentally ill people have been having it too easy. You release them up on the street either. Yeah. Yeah. Yes. Ronald Reagan, the the only Republican to push for massive gun control, didn't get attacked. This still does not get attacked for it because the purpose of it was to disarm black people. That's the story we'll tell at some point. Yeah, that's why California has a bans on open carrying, actually. Cool stuff, cool story. Ronald Reagan now. Uh, one of the chief hero. Yeah, everybody's hero, of course, of course. One of the chief reasons Jerry Falwell and that about throngs he spoke for disliked Carter was his support for feminism. Back in the 1960s and early 70s, when the feminist movement had first launched, it had seen tepid support from conservative Christian circles. This started to change in the mid 1970s, largely as a result of the feminist movement's decision to treat gay people like human beings and not diseased pariahs. Yay? Yeah, real tactical misstep there. In November 1977, the National Women's Conference was held in Houston, TX. Feminist activists declared an alliance with several gay rights groups. At a meeting earlier in the year, feminist activists had noted that lesbians made-up a significant portion of the movement. They found no ****. Lesbians ******* run ****. You want somebody to make a ******* Excel spreadsheet and show up on time? You get a lesbian. Yep, I'm just giving advice out here for people are trying to hire. I'm like, get a lesbian getting that advice, yeah. Also, it's pretty easy to pirate Microsoft Excel. I don't have anything else to add. It's just in Google Docs. You can use their sheets too. Yeah, but that's not stealing something. No, it's not. Yeah. Really want to be transgressive? You have a lesbian woman steal Microsoft Excel and then really fighting the power should show it to Mr Paperclip. OK, so yeah, the. So yeah, the National Women's Conference acknowledged that the oppression faced by gay people was very much rooted in many of the same things that caused the oppression of women in American Society. The intersectional ISM you could call it morally, this was the right decision, but it led to a tremendous backlash against feminism by America's most intolerant Christians 2 years before the establishment of the moral majority. Jerry Falwell said this about the gay rights movement, though they claim to be another poorly treated minority. Homosexuals are involved in open immorality as they practice perversion. They're not a minority anymore than murderers. Rapists or other sinners are a minority since they cannot reproduce. They proselyte, proselyte, proselyte. He's saying that they they have to recruit people and this is like. So, Jerry, like, there's a conspiracy now. Like, if you watch like, Alex Jones show and the reporting like the Drag Queen story hour, there's this, like, belief among them that it's like this, this attempt by the LGBT community to recruit young people. Yeah, Jerry Falwell invents that conspiracy theory. He's like the first really prominent voice saying that, like, well, because obviously being gay isn't something natural. It's not something that, like just a certain portion of the population is always going to be because that's just the way that human beings are, as well as every other species that reproduces sexually are. Like he decides the only way that they can make new gay people is to convert children. And like, that's obviously now, like you could run into it **** load today. It's like a huge conspiracy theory and we have Jerry Falwell to thank for that. So that's cool. I mean, I don't know where that comes from. It's like, do you think straights are out there teaching straight people how to straight? Yeah, it does kind of insinuate that, like, being straight isn't natural either. And you just have to, like, capture kids with whatever, right? Yeah, the kids just come out completely without any identities and then, like, whoever catches them first. Yeah, that's the sexuality they're gonna get. Yeah. They're like, they're like birds imprinting on the first thing they see out of the egg. So lucky the first thing I saw when I came out was a penis and a vagina. That's how I became by right away. Yeah. Was a weird hospital you were born in. I mean, it was an all new hospital. My request you just hospital. It wasn't. I requested that in the womb. I would love it if we just did a shot for shot remake of ER. But everyone's naked and they never ever never address it, not for one second. I would love it. Not just because I want to see like. Like, yeah, well, so I was annoyed. Whiley fan. Oh yeah, he was hot. But I mean, I kind of really wanted them to kiss always, but they never would. Sorry, that was a personal journey I took. I I have some good news for you. There's about 400,000 pages of fanfiction where they do, in fact consummate that relationship. So I know what I'm doing after this podcast. I am excited for what deep fakes are going to do for fan fiction. Romances like that's, it's really going to be groundbreaking. I'm ***** already. Yeah, so is Reddit. Oh yeah, I should probably read the podcast that we're doing. I was thinking about George Clooney and Noel Wiley. Me too. Yeah, we all were. So Jimmy Carter was far from an outspoken gay rights advocate during his time in office, although he has since been been very outspoken about that. But he did lend his vocal support to the feminist movement, including the 1977 National Women's Conference to Falwell and his fellow evangelicals. This made Jimmy Carter a traitor to God's cause. They further hated Carter for his liberal policies on the value of social programs. Compounding this was the fact that the mid to late 1970s. At the time of deep economic stagnation and high unemployment, now in this recession had actually started at the tail end of Nixon's time and power, and it reached its deepest severity during Gerald Ford's presidency and continued through Carter's term in office. The actual causes of this stagflation, which is a term we all learned in high school, our complex and multifaceted rooted in a combination of enormous government spending on the Vietnam War, surging oil prices, and a series of Union strikes. Things actually improved economically during Carter's term, but not quickly enough for Falwell and his fellows. And the religious right. Rather than see the recession as what it was, a complex disaster brought on by many different decisions, particularly those made by Richard Nixon, they decided the politic move would be to blame the economy on social programs. This tied in with a growing belief among the religious right that the federal government was incapable of handling social programs. They wanted churches guided by powerful pastors like Jerry Falwell, to see to the poor and disenfranchised. Falwell expressed this wish. Let us train to the poor. Such a ******* hilarious. The privileged like. Turn a phrase. It's like, oh, someone see to the poor. Yeah, please. And there's this idea that, like, if the government's taking care of them, then they're basically slaves to the government as opposed to why would you care about them? That's gross. Yeah. Government. Government, please get in here. Yes, please take care of the pause, shall you? Yeah. Yeah. And it's like, like it is, it is kind of rooted in this idea that he had that, like he should, he and other pastors should own the poor should, like, control them, like, because they they clearly believe that the government, like, that's one of the lines you'll hear on the right. Is that, like, well, if you have all these social programs, then basically, like, all these people are indebted to the government and they're they're just going to vote for more social programs. But it's like if you're saying that you want churches to take care of it and you're just saying you want those churches to people to be indebted to the Church of course. Yeah, it's cool. Cool way for things to have work, yeah. Jerry Falwell was a committed anti communist and he also saw the social safety net the Democrats had increasingly invested in since the New Deal as fundamentally dangerous. In 1976 he preached that if God lifts his hand from America, it's all over and if America loses her freedom, the free world is gone. America should bless the world with expensive healthcare and not being able to feed your family. Also, it's always like ************* being like, oh I know what everybody should be doing that you're like. No one literally asked you ever. Yeah. But no, this is with a moral. This is the moral agenda I have for the Poors who I now own, which is so just so weird. And also, there's a fundamental belief that poor people are somehow different from rich people. Yeah, you know that they're like of a lower stock. Well, in a different cast, they'd be rich. Yeah, that's the whole thing. It's like it comes. It's such a deep seated thing that, like, it's beautiful, poor masses. It's always like, Oh yeah, they're ******* dumb. They're dumb as hell. Otherwise they'd be us. Otherwise they would have started. A mega church and and made money off of themselves, yeah. Yeah, it's a it's like it's neofeudalism, you know, totally. That's what Jerry Falwell wants to be is like a little king with a castle and some peasants who have to do what he says. Now, and for Jerry Falwell, America losing its freedom was synonymous with America spending money on stuff like food stamps. In the late 1970s, he made increasing claims that, quote, federal welfare checks went to bums who wouldn't work in a pie shop eating the holes out of doughnuts. Jerry fought. I love that he thinks that's a job and also I want that job. I do want that job. I do want that job. To Jerry Falwell, the roots of the economic crisis weren't a global dependence on oil, Opec's domination of the oil market, or the outrageous spending by several presidential. Administrations on a failed war. The cause was welfare spending from Falwell because of the heavy taxation demanded for the support of a sick and unbalanced welfare program. The very heart is being cut out of the business community. The government seems to be committed to taxing the successful businessman right out of business. Yeah, it's a real problem in the 70s, businessmen being taxed out of business. And so, for all these reasons, in 1980 the moral majority turned its back on the most committed evangelical Christian to ever hold executive office, and instead turned towards movie star Ronald Reagan. Wild, yeah. And Reagan didn't really know how to deal with the moral majority. Like, he was didn't really talk about his Christian worldview in his first campaign. He didn't really talk about, like, how it had impacted his beliefs or anything like that. Like, he he wasn't that guy. Like, nowadays you can't imagine a Republican winning by not like, even if, like, it's Trump, like, misquoting Bible verses. They've got to, like, do that ****. Reagan really didn't in his first campaign, and it was actually revealed during the election that he donated less than 1% of his income to religious causes. Which is way short of like the 10% tithing that you're supposed to do, but for the first and only time, Christian conservatives decided it was OK to vote for a man who wasn't religious and against a man who profoundly was in order to. Get tax benefits because money is the real God. Yeah, that that really is like the. That's my conspiracy theory about Jerry Falwell. So once Reagan got elected, evangelicals of the moral majority came to believe that they had a president who would advance their agenda of, like, getting rid of abortion and bringing back school prayer and getting governments to let them not have black kids at their schools. And a lot of people who were like rational observers of all of this thought that they were kind of fooling themselves because there was really no chance that Reagan was going to do any of that **** like he was a conservative. Ronald Reagan wasn't going to wade into like, pulling away Roe V Wade or reinstituting like school prayer or anything like that. And so, like while they were in office, Reagan's administration would kind of like talk nicely to the moral majority. But he actually didn't do most of the stuff that they wanted. The Reagan administration proved to be a huge disappointment for Jerry Falwell. Throughout his first year in office, Ronnie refused to go after any of the social issues the new Christian Right had voted him into office to deal with. Abortion remained legal. Mandatory school prayer remained illegal. Feminism continued its slow March forward. The only social arena in which Reagan's corporatist chunk of the Republican Party remained in line with the religious right was the oppression of gay people. So at least there's that for Jerry. Nice to find some common ground. Common ground. The common ground is stomping on the head of a yeah. Yeah. Conservatives in San Francisco attempted to criminalize homosexuality during Reagan's term, and the moral majority launched a boycott of sponsors for TV shows that included anything they considered an abomination in the eyes of God. As the AIDS crisis kicked off and the death toll started to rise from the hundreds to the thousands to the 10s of thousands, Jerry Falwell was there to blame the catastrophe on gay people. I'm going to quote next from a National Institutes of Health Publication, the social impact of AIDS on the United States. The Reverend Jerry Falwell, an independent Baptist minister, in a sermon titled how many roads to Heaven delivered on his nationally televised old time Gospel Hour, stated that God was bringing an end to the sexual revolution through the AIDS epidemic. He also said they gay men are scared to walk near one of their own kind right now. And what we preachers have been unable to do with our preaching a God who hates sin has stopped dead in its tracks by saying do it and die do it and die follows political organization. Moral majority opposed governmentally funded research to find a cure for AIDS because the disease was a gay problem. He promoted the idea that AIDS was not only God's judgment on gay men, but also that divine judgment extended to all of society. Aids is a lethal judgment of God on America for endorsing this vulgar, perverted, and reprobate lifestyle. Strong condemnations of gay sexuality is the cause of AIDS in gods of vengeance also appeared in some religious journals. One of them affirmed God warned mankind about AIDS and numbers 3223 when he said, be sure your sin will find you out. Maybe the AIDS plague will educate the world that the Bible is still the bedrock of civilization and it should be learned, loved, and lived in our daily lives. Wow. I really feel like getting people to get into Christianity by saying that God could occasionally punish you with AIDS is really not the strongest pitch I've heard for Christianity. I really feel like that's not or if you throw that bagel, you're out of the show, you're fired. Sophie's faces very angry. Just prepping it. I have to deal with my rage at reading that paragraph somehow, and the way I'm doing it is by putting my sling bag. Together and getting it loaded. Alright, you loaded up, but you don't throw away yet. Not yet. If you hit the dog. She's not in here. OK, yeah, so this is the best time to throw a bagel. Really. See, I planned this out. I didn't. The exact impact of Falwell and the moral majority, and the death toll of the AIDS crisis is impossible to calculate. As with the 1970s recession, this was a disaster with many factors behind it. We dealt with some of that in our two parter on the Reagans and the AIDS epidemic. The total death toll to AIDS would measure close to half a million by the year 2000. Much of the government in action on AIDS during the crucial early years of the outbreak can be blamed on the religious rights of vicious rejection of any money being spent to help people sick with what was then called the gay plague. It's nuts to me to be like oh. We're gonna meddle in your business and tell you that you can't be gay, but also now that you need help for what we've called a gay disease, we're going to just completely step away. How do you how do you have it both ways, where you're like meddling and telling people what to do, but then you're also like, no, but then not this part. It's the same way it always works with these people. We're the only actual moral. Consistency is hate. No actual philosophy that can stand up to anything. Yeah. If you think about the core of it being hate, then it all is consistent. Yeah. Because they're they, they're justification will change. And like, they'll say, like, yeah, we shouldn't spend any money. Like we we can't, you know, spend any money to like, help out gay people. But also, like, we can't consider homosexuality in any way as like a government and like, all these different, like contradictory things, but the core of it is just they want gay people to die. So if you think about it like that, then yeah. Like, completely consistent, very consistent. Kind of what everyone who's not white and wealthy to die, but they hide the wealthy part from the people that they need to vote. I mean, that's Trump right now. Also, this is saying, yeah, this is kind of where the core of that as a political movement came from because like, before this, like there were conservatives, but they were like, like, like Nixon, the ****** stuff he did was kind of like. There was a lot of ****** stuff he did, but you could also have a guy like Nixon who would do like rational things like, well, but of course we need to protect the environment and like, OK, I'll open trade with China even though like there are our big nemesis. Like that seems quaint now. He'd also bomb Cambodia in the Stone Age, but like. He's not gonna like he's he's. It was just different. Different. Kind of ****** Yep. Yeah. We've really evolved. We really have evolved thanks to Jerry Falwell. Now, there was an appeal during this time on the Christian Broadcasting Network, where they asked their followers to write the Justice Department and opposition to any relaxation of the rule against immigration of HIV infected persons, and that don't generated 40,000 letters. And I can't think of anything more Christlike than not wanting sick immigrants to be helped. As as Jesus said, **** ****. You got mine, yeah. Famous, famous Jesus quote, yeah. So abortion remained a key issue for the moral majority throughout the 1980s. They did not see much support from the Reagan administration on this Falwell's tactic was to seek a constitutional amendment to overturn Roe V Wade. Since the Supreme Court had already declared that this undue restriction of abortion was a violation of constitutional rights. His first step towards achieving this was the human life bill, which would have written into American law that life begins at conception and that a fetus is a living person, but the human life bill never passed Falwell's embrace it. This tactic set the tone of the abortion debate, though, in a way that rings through to this day. The Reagan administration was never quite willing to take real action, though, because that would have cost them the political capital that they preferred to spend on deregulation and deinstitutionalization. But later on, Reagan at all would throw a few bones to the moral majority. In 1982, one of his allies in the Senate introduced a constitutional amendment that would have made it legal to have official school prayers as long as individual students or teachers couldn't be forced to say that prayer. The amendment never came particularly close to passing, and Reagan himself failed to go to bat for it in any significant way, though early in 1982, Reagan's. Justice and Treasury departments did reverse the IRS revocation of tax-exempt status for Bob Jones University, but this sparked a massive backlash at the administration for basically supporting segregation with taxpayer dollars. Yeah, yeah, Papa Jones keeps insisting they're like, no, we're we're really committed to segregation. Yeah, it's our religious beliefs. It's not based on racism. It's based on what we think God wants, which we know about better than anyone, which is racism, but not our racism. God. God, so it's fine. It's totally not us. Yeah. So Reagan backpedaled and announced that he was now seeking a congressional ban on tax exemptions for racially discriminatory schools. This happened. And so while the moral majority wound up supporting Reagan's reelection campaign, the Christian right came out the other side of the Reagan years deeply disappointed and conservative politics. We only got some of what we wanted. We didn't get everything. Jerry Falwell, however, was not the kind of guy to put all of his eggs in one basket. Throughout the early years of the moral majority, and over the course of Reagan's two terms, Jerry fought an epic battle for the soul of the 1st amendment with a man who might rightly be viewed as his greatest nemesis. Larry Flynn. Larry Flynt, baby, yeah, finally a hero. Finally a hero arrives, and we're going to talk about that hero. But you know what else is a hero? Sophia? The corporations who sponsored this podcast. What if it's cooking industries? Oak industries, you mean? Coke here, hero when Destriers hero Industries. Buy coke products. No. No, no, Sophie's so mad at you. Sophie's very mad at me. Sorry, I I'm distracted thinking about when I'm going to utilize the sling next. The mold on that bagel is truly disgusting, isn't it? So, so much mold on this bagel, it keeps putting it next to the food I actually put in my mouth and I'm like, why are you doing that? I can't explain my actions. I just do them. Speaking of which, products? I'm Robert Evans hosted behind the ******** and after a long day of reading about terrible people nothing helps me calm down like cooking and eating a great meal. But it takes a long time to go to the grocery store and to figure out like different recipes to cook. Which is why HelloFresh has been so simple for me. They mail the food right to your door along with pre measured ingredients and step by step recipes that can help you put a great dinner together in less than 30 minutes. There's 20 plus seasonal chef curated recipes each week and they have a variety of different types from family recipes. Low calorie recipes to vegetarian recipes so you know it's flexible. You can edit extra meals to your weekly order as well as add-ons like garlic bread or cookie dough. You can change your delivery days on a week to week basis. So if you want to have the great experience I have and you know save a lot of time by using HelloFresh, you can get 9 free meals right now by going to nine that's nine and use the code B9 for 9 free B9. We're back, and Sophie is saying mean things to me, I think, in an attempt to get me to throw this bagel. No one's attempting to get you to throw that. Everybody's excited for me to throw this bagel. That's really the highlight of the show. That's what keeps the listeners coming back. That bagel touches me. Draw from him. I can't promise it won't. I can't promise what I'll do. That's fine. Great. This is a tense standoff. I can't wait to see how it resolves every podcast. Nothing goes better with an audio medium than a standoff based mainly on eye contact. Also saying I would pick her in a fight. Yeah. Also, we're wearing pretty much the exact same outfit. Kind of. We are wearing the exact same outfit. So this would be like me fighting my own shadow. So if you can that be the ad plug for the OR the the the video plug for the episode. Thank you guys. Fighting, I mean. Sure. OK. Well shadow box so. We're talking about Larry Flynt. We finally have a hero. Are you excited for this? So excited. You like you big fan of Larry Flint. I mean, who doesn't love Larry Flint? Larry Flint. That movie was so fun. Yeah, one of the best **** peddlers there. That who was ever peddled ****. And I I say that with love. In case you weren't aware, Larry Flint is one of the most infamous **** peddlers of all time. He's the founder of Hustler magazine, a trailblazer in the field of ***********. And as a child, he claims to have lost his virginity to a literal. Chicken. Did you know that? No, I think the chicken. Yeah. He grew up on a farm and he said, like, farm kids would **** animals. And that's how he lost it. He claimed for years. That's how he lost his virginity to a chicken. Interesting. I mean, I figured farm animals, sure, but I chicken seems very. He was getting really specific and consistent about the chicken. I mean, they have to be able to push an egg out, so I imagine there would be more room in there for your teenage farm boy ****. I hate this. Continue. I just, I just everyone should know that the hero of today's episode is a chicken ******. And no one's even gonna care by the end of this story. Yeah, because he he he's on the right side of history. Yeah. Now, Larry Flint as a chicken ******* **** salesman is perhaps an unlikely pick for the man who literally saved free speech as we know it, but he is in fact the man who literally saved free speech as we know it. His story is extremely well documented and you can find a number of different write ups of what happened. For our purposes, I'm going to quote the man, the myth, the legend, the chicken ****** himself. Larry flynt. This is for an article he wrote. The LA Times tucking about the duel between him and Falwell and how it first began. I was publishing Hustler magazine, which most people know has been pushing the envelope of taste from the very beginning, and Falwell was blasting me every chance he had. He would talk about how I was a slime dealer responsible for the decay of all morals. He called me every terrible name. He could think of, names as bad, in my opinion, as any language used in my magazine. After several years of listening to him bash me and read his insults, I decided it was time to start poking some fun at him. So he ran a parody at and Hustler. I take off on the then current Campari ads in which people were interviewed. Describing their first time in the ads, it ultimately became clear that the interviewees were describing their first time sipping Campari. But not in our parity. We had followed describing his first time as having been with his mother, drunk off our God fearing ***** in an outhouse. Suck it ball. Well, yeah. Pastor Falwell did not take this joke well. Well, it's so crazy. He seems like you would have such a good something. He'd be able to laugh at himself with all the pranks he's pulled on other people like that. Hilarious. Burning down the street prank, I mean. Not find this funny, and he sued Larry and his magazine for libel in Virginia. The lawsuit started in 1983, not long after the moral majority found themselves frustrated by Reagan waffling on tax exemptions and school prayer. It's possible Jerry's hunger for a win as part of what drove him in this endeavor. For a while, the case went well for him. Flint lost in the jury trial and again in federal appeals court. Now, if Flint had lost, he'd have had to pay Jerry $200,000 for, in Larry's words, hurting his feelings. He wasn't willing to do this, and so he appealed to the US 4th. Circuit Court of Appeals, where he lost again. So Larry appealed once but more. And that was a decision with significant cost to him. He spent about $3 million in total on the lawsuits, but by escalating it this high, he also kind of risked the 1st amendment for everybody, which was a certainly a complicated decision to weigh because since it had been escalated to the Supreme Court and like way out of like Virginia politics, that meant that like now. What was at stake wasn't just the state level libel trial. Larry was, and he claims he didn't really think about this at the time, taking a gamble with the entirety of the 1st amendment. So now, like, the case was not just about, like, whether or not he'd violated Virginia law, but whether or not the First Amendment protected powerful people from being made fun of. And that, like, kind of was the core of the Supreme Court case that Larry Flynt waged against Jerry Falwell, and if he'd lost, would have essentially removed First Amendment protections from the parity of public figures. Thankfully, for all of us, but most particularly late night TV hosts, the justices ruled that even gross and repugnant parody of a public figure was protected by the 1st amendment. I mean, satire. If we don't have satire, what do we have? And that's what the Supreme Court decided. And so because of Larry Flint, that's not something we even have to debate over. It's like settled jurisprudence. So that's good. Chief Justice Renquist explained that had they ruled against Flint, all any public figure would ever have to prove is that a writer made them feel bad. To sue them and their publication into Oblivion, which, yeah, would have brought about the end of free speech as we know it. So Larry Flint both gambled and saved free speech in the course of a couple of years. Good for you, Larry. Good for you, Larry. Yeah. I'm going to quote from Larry's write up again. Everyone was shocked at our victory and no one more so than Falwell, who on the day of the decision called me a sleaze merchant hiding behind the 1st amendment. Still, over time, Falwell was forced to publicly come to grips with the reality that this is America, where you can make fun of anyone you want. Yeah. Yeah, as the 1990s rolled along, the death toll from AIDS. Sorry, we're getting back to AIDS now. Yeah, you can't read that in the same happy voice. You just read that decision. Nope. Nope. Tone shifting is a real problem for me, but here we are. The death toll from AIDS rose from to the hundreds of thousands. Partly as a consequence, mainstream America began to gradually wake up to the idea that gay people are human beings and maybe didn't deserve to be abandoned, to die horribly by a sociopathic government. Well, most of the country slowly started to accept homosexual people as fellow. Citizens Jerry Falwell continue to be a huge ***** ** ****. When the Clinton administration pushed forward its health care reform plan, Falwell complained in a video that this would allow AIDS patients to receive treatment without quote, any penalty for their abusive lifestyles. What the ****? He's like if you live, I want you to be punished. I want you to go to jail for the crime of costing government money to treat you having a relationship with someone you love. What a human ***** ** ****. Really? A human ***** ** ****? Jerry Falwell and his tax exempt church. He quoted right wing firebrand Rush Limbaugh when the pill addicted old ******* wine that allowing gays in the military would bankrupt the government due to the cost of their AIDS care and the parade of bigotry went on from there. I'm going to quote from God's right hand again. In 1994, in a mailing sent out to supporters of the Liberty Alliance, Falwell wrote that the Clinton administration is set to award thousands and thousands of immigration visas to foreigners who are infected with the lethal, fatal and deadly AIDS virus. It's lethal, fatal and deadly. Sophia well, but if it's well, the first two cancel each other out. So it's really only the last one. Just deadly. Just deadly. Really dodged a bullet there. Yeah. So they can come to America. That's right. The Clinton administration is putting the health, welfare, public safety and life of every American at risk just so these homosexuals can hold an Olympic Games for gays and lesbians and transvestites and bisexuals and pedophiles and sodomites and exhibitionists and cross dressers and every other sexual deviant on the planet with perverted proclivities. That is a long list. That is a long list. But also, he doesn't know. What about what people do? No, he does not. Probably does not. I will say that's actually one of the things that you got to give Jerry Falwell that you don't have to give his kids is he was morally consistent, he believed ****** things and he lived ****** things whereas his kids. Just say ****** things, but yeah, and they don't believe them. No, no, no, they don't at all. So yeah, I don't know. Which is better, but there's no better. It's a **** sandwich. It's a **** sandwich. Yeah. The fundraising appeal warned that these deviants would infect Americans with the AIDS virus before leaving, defame your pastors, invade your neighborhoods, and recruit your children. Always comes back to that, whether it's yeah, just teaching children to be gay. Just out there, gay immigrants are going to recruit your kids. The late 1990s brought Larry Flint and Jerry Falwell back together, this time his friends. History's Otis bromance started in a 1997 episode of the Larry King Show. Flint was promoting his recent autobiography, and Larry brought Falwell out. The pastor greeted his former rival warmly with literal hugs and kisses, and then started dropping by his office. On visits to California, the two had a series of polite debates on morality and 1st amendment issues that went on for nearly a decade. This is Larry Flint. In the years that followed up and up until his death, he'd come to see me every time he was in California. We'd have interesting philosophical conversations. We'd exchange personal Christmas cards. He'd show me pictures of his grandchildren. I was with him in Florida once when he complained about his health and his weight, so I suggested he go on a diet that worked for me. I faxed a copy to his wife when I got back home. Now it's interesting to me because, like you, you kind of see the core of Falwell's issue. If Larry Flynt had just been like a poor guy running like a fly by night **** magazine out of his like apartment, Falwell would never have wanted to talk to him. But like fundamentally just respects another white guy with money. Exactly. That's really what it is for him. Yeah, yeah, that's his primary loyalty is to other rich guys with money. Like gross, gross and God's right hand. Michael Winters notes that Falwell was constitutionally incapable of eating healthy food. His favorite. Breakfast was a cheddar cheese omelet with sausage, which he generally ate at a Bob Evans restaurant near his church. Bobby looked at me as soon as I said that. I've been getting that **** since I was a kid growing up in the ******* yeah, as of now, an elderly man in his 60s and 70s, Falwell continued his brutal schedule, traveling across the nation to preach as well as running Liberty University, raising funds and of course, preaching at his own church age and illness did not slow him down, nor did it put an end to his hot takes. That's a shame. Yeah. In 1999, Jerry threw down one of the hottest takes in the history of hot takes. The Teletubbies, a surreal British children show that. I don't really know. How to summarize if you have not seen it and aren't aware of what it looked like took America by storm that year. Most people saw it as a weird but basically harmless way to keep children entertained. Not Jerry. Gary yeah, you remember this one? The purple teletubby? Yeah, he saw it as a sinister attempt to infect the minds of young children with devilish gay propaganda. I'm going to quote from God's right hand again. Falwell's Liberty Journal discerned a sinister agenda regarding Tinky Winky. He is purple. The Gay pride color in his antenna is shaped like a triangle. The gay Pride symbol noted the February issue. If that was not enough, Tinky Winky carried a magic bag that Falwell's editors thought looked suspiciously like a purse you heard Co accused the producers of intentionally. Getting settled depictions of gay sexuality in the show and said that such role modeling of the gay lifestyle was damaging to the moral lives of children. Again, such nerds. Such ******* nerds. Gigantic ******* nerds. And the way Larry Flint summarizes this issue is ******* hysterical to me. When he was getting blasted for his ridiculous homophobic comments after he wrote that his tinky Winky article cautioning parents that the Purple Teletubby character was in fact gay, I called him in Florida and yelled at him. To leave the Tinky winkies alone. Oh my God, Larry. That's amazing. Hmm. You know what else is amazing, Sophia? These goods and services. Products and services. Sorry, we don't sell goods on this show. Goods and our products. And products are goods. Products. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for none of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. Mint Mobile will give you the best rate whether you're buying. Or for a family. And it meant family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. 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It's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. My name is Erica Kelly and I am the host and creator of Southern Freight true crime. There are so many people that just have no idea about some injustices in the world, and if you can give a voice to them, you can create change. To be able to do it within podcasting is just such a gift. I believe it was 18 months after I got on with Spreaker that I was making enough that I could quit my day job. It was incredible. I always feel like an ambassador for speaker, but that's because I'm passionate about podcasting. It's really easy to use. I always tell people I am so not tech. Took me 5 minutes to get comfortable with speaker, and when I find a new friend that has an incredible show, I want them to make money. I want them to be able to do what I did. Follow your podcasting dreams. Let's break your handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Get paid to talk about the things you love with spreaker from iheart. We're back. I'm taking some Flack from Sophie, but. I've still got my bagel sling. Ohh yeah, it's gonna do some damage, Sophie. Gonna do some damage. So there were some signs over the years the Jerry Falwell might soften his attitude towards homosexuality in the same way he reversed his opinion on segregation. One of these was the torture and murder of Matthew Shepard. In October of 1998. Fred Phelps in the Westboro Baptist Church, being giant pieces of **** protested Shepherd's funeral. Jerry Falwell, being a slightly smaller ***** ** **** had enough human decency to be sickened by this. He got together with the Christian pro gay activist to hold a summit on nonviolence within the evangelical community. Literally. Hey, we should stop murdering gay people. Maybe we should talk about not murdering gay people. Which? You know, if it took him, what, six years, four to five years when he had that epiphany about segregation? Yeah, so. You know, he was really turning it over in his head. Is it wrong for us to murder gay people? Yeah. Yeah, he is. Really. He's like, I'm going to take my time on this. Yeah, he really did. So Falwell failed, refused to reconsider his position that homosexuality went against the Bible and the will of God. But he did stand in front of a pastiche of photos of murdered gay people and state his desire for peace inside both camps. Are people more interested in peace than in war and glorifying God than in getting their point across? He mentioned his friendship with Larry Flint as evidence. He mentioned his friendship with Larry Flint as evidence that he and his ministry supported love for people, regardless of whether he approved of their behavior. He said to the gay community, we have not done that. With you, we apologize for that. We ask your forgiveness for that. So yay, yay. It's the ritish thing. Done eventually. Kind of. Sort of. Let's read the next paragraph. Falwell supported George W Bush in the 2000 election. However, he was not the same force that he had been in the 1980 election. For one thing, he was older and less influential. But the religious right he organized and formed into a weapon of political domination had only grown more powerful. George Bush lost one with the help of evangelical Christianity, and his administration would cater to them in a more direct way than the Reagan administration had, particularly with things like the proposed defensive. Marriage Act as you might expect, Jerry's reaction to the terrorist attacks on September 11th, 2001 were uniquely ******. While most of America grieved and worked to process their fear and rage in the wake of the most spectacularly deadly terrorist attack in history, Jerry lashed out at who else? Gay people? Yeah, you got it. You're really getting a feel for this guy. I just also remember this. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Two days after the attack, while guesting on Pat Robertson's show the 700 club, Falwell said this. What we saw on Tuesday, as terrible as it is, could be miniscule if in fact God continues to lift the curtain and allow the enemies of America to give us probably what we deserve. Pat, who is also a huge ***** ** **** agreed Jerry. That's my feeling and I feel we've just seen the anti chamber to terror. We haven't even begun to see what they can do to the major population. Shortly after that Falwell got down to explaining who he thought was really to blame for all this. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked and when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies we make God mad. I really believe that the Pagans and the abortionists and the feminists and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU people for the American way, all of them have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say you helped this happen. I mean, there's thanks for helping the country heal. You know what I mean? Things I what I love about the wake of 911 is how it brought us all together. Yeah. Really made us the best version of ourselves. Yeah, yeah, yeah. What a what a beautiful way. Only we could get back to that. Yeah. How can we be the people we were at that moment? Yeah, before we blamed ourselves. And when we blamed. Everyone else, women and abolitionists and yeah, ACLU and yeah, gay ACLU. I mean, there's an extent to which that we could just take this. We could, like, adopt this as kind of an empowering statement. Like, yeah, we did make 911 happen, guys. We ****** those towers up. Good. Good on us. My God. Yeah. So what's it like? What's the weather like in in in in your end of Pennsylvania right now? I will let you know when my I helped cause 911 T-shirts go on sale at public. Sophie, how how close are we to getting those out? She just said ******* kill me and I appreciate that. These comments caused an uproar, which was not enough to stop President Bush from inviting Jerry Falwell to speak at the national cathedral that year. Shortly after that, Falwell released a non apology apology. Despite the impression some may have from news reports today, I hold no one other than the terrorists and the people and nations who have enabled and harbored them responsible for Tuesday's attack on this nation. I sincerely regret that the comments I made during a long theological discussion on a Christian television program yesterday were taken out of their context and reported that my thoughts reduced to sound bites. Detracted from the spirit of this day of mourning. OK, that's a lie. We all heard what you said. What you know doesn't strike you as a real apology. The fact that there's no I'm sorry in there. But all he said was you helped this happen. He's not saying that they committed 911, they just enabled 911. You wouldn't arrest a guy for enabling a murderer, right? Yes. Oh, that's conspiracy to commit murder then. It does sound like Jerry Falwell is accusing us all of that. Kind of does sound like that. Who I helped enable 911 shirts. Sophie's not a fan of this one. I wanna take the bagel sling so bad. No, it's my aim it at your stupid face right now. Ohh, the shirt could be somebody's knocking down the north tower with a bagel from Robert. You're ******* fired. Stop. I'm going to be in cancel Vania by nightfall. You're already you. You were in the lowest levels of Pennsylvania. Right now. Louis CK is several floors above you. Wait. Does this mean that Ansari is going to open for me now? He is doing better than you. Ohh. ****. You would hope to open for him. And you're not allowed steam, right? OK. Yeah. OK. You're Weinstein. Level Cosby is in your kitchen, making you T right. Now let me try my canceled apology. OK? I am sorry that comments I made about me causing 911 were taken out of context. By you and that it offended you. I am sorry that you were offended by the things that were said by someone who may have been me, but I do not apologize specifically for the statement itself. Or for its intent? Or for its intent. Was that a good apology? Yeah, I feel a lot better. Thank you. I learned a lot from the people that I've written about. So. Uh yeah, well, the Neo Cons Falwell had helped into office launched 2 disastrous, very poorly waged and executed wars that crippled our military and loaded future generations down with unspeakable debt. Jerry Falwell spent his last few years seeing to his empire. In 2004 he opened a law school at Liberty University stating we planned to turn out conservative lawyers the same way Harvard turns out Liberals notable leftist bastion Harvard was like what? In 2005, his health took a sharp downswing. He suffered a heart attack, which he unfortunately survived. He recovered, but took this as a sign that he should start preparing to hand over the reins of his empire to his son, Jerry Junior. Why don't you take that as a sign that you're being evil? It's like 911. The gays caused what? Did what? How? How did you cause your own ******* heart attack, buddy? It's too much hate. They never say, never seem to really think that God did that, not because they were bad. That is weird. Super strange. Yeah. Even in the twilight of his life, Jerry Falwell continued to play ****** pranks on people. Oh my God, the pranksters. One more prank story. Oh my God, I'm going to quote from God's right here. Come on. He just joked about murdering people. He drove his SUV around campus, developing a new prank of revving the motor at students as they walked in front of the vehicle. Great, that's threatening to run children over with your car. I love the ****. All ****** people have the same definition of prank and it's making people fear for their lives. Yeah, I love it. Straight up cruelty. Yeah, it's beautiful. He equipped his SUV with an especially loud horn that he would blow it unsuspecting pedestrians. What * **** that's at least closer to a prank. What a ******* ****. On May 15th, 2007, Jerry Falwell ate breakfast at the Bob Evans restaurant near his house. Afterwards, he entered his office and suffered a massive heart attack. Thankfully, the paramedics failed to revive him this time, and he stayed dead. And that praised the Lord is the end of Jerry Falwell's story. But it is not the end of the Falwell story, and it was only the beginning of the story of the institution known as Liberty University. But that, my friends, is a story that will have to wait for another week. But I have it written here. Sophia, yeah, how you feeling? I mean refreshed, because now, he said. I feel like there's only one way to really celebrate the death of Jerry Falwell. If that bagel hits either of us, I will punch you in the nuts. You'll be right to do so. Yeah, I I just. It's a deal. I fell behind you. You don't even deserve to throw it looks like the erectile dysfunction of bagel throwing totally right out of the hoop. All right, all right, guys, it's going to happen now. There's no stopping it. That was dangerously near Sophie's head. It was it. Anything you do with a sling in a tiny enclosed recording studio is going to be dangerous. I mean, if one day Sophie slipped something in your drink and you deserve it and you have a massive heart attack after eating at Bob Jones Diner. I mean, you're going to get your use, right? The cheese omelet with sausage, and then you're going to have a. Nice now I hate her, tack. Oh no. Sophie is definitely gonna be the one causes your heart attack. Hater attack. A hater attack. Alright, I have to leave. I feel like hate kept him alive. Yep. You want to plug your puggles? Sure. You guys can find me on Twitter and Instagram at the Sophia SOFIYA. And you can find me Co hosting private parts unknown, my podcast with Courtney Cosack about love and sexuality around the world and 4:20 Day fiance. My podcast with Miles Grey, about 90 day fiance. And you can find me on the Internet at, where we'll have all of the sources for this. I'd also like to say special thanks to Corey, who made this wonderful sling that has improved all of our days. So burn in hell, Corey. You burn in hell. And if someone wants to draw fan art of George Clooney and Noah Wiley kissing. Touching penises? Whatever. Taking down the World Trade Center? Please tweet that at me. What the ****? Mad at me and also cancel Robert Hashtag cancel Robert hashtag cancel Robert. Plug your plug on bulls T-shirts At Bastarde pod, Twitter and Instagram. I'm. I write, OK, on Twitter where you can tell me that I'm cancelled to my digital face and this is the end of the episode. This is not the end of the episode. What else do we do, Sophie? We have another podcast with Katie Stolen, Cody Johnson called. We have another podcast with Katie Stoll and Cody Johnston called NPR's radio app. I hate you. So ohh no, we actually, we actually, we actually we actually beat them last week in the ratings. Yeah, our show. Worst year ever. Alright, you brought it back. I like that. I like that. Here's your bagel. Bagel back. I'm gonna throw one more time. This is this one's for you, Corey. Feel like it's coming from me? Did you tried to get Sophia, which I do not like. Did I do not, I can't aim this thing. I do not. I've gently kicked it towards you now. Alright, well, that's all the bagel throwing I'm going to do today with this link. Great. Thanks, Cory. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's breaker handle the hosting creation distribution. And monetization of your podcast go to That's Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her social discoveries on chimpanzees. So, four, oh, months the chimps ran away from me. I mean, they take one look at this peculiar white ape and disappear into the vegetation. In wildlife, on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. Hey, it's Chuck Wicks from love country. 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