Is that you, Corey Feldman?
Yesterday evening I received word from my host that someone had filed a complaint against me and was demanding that one of my posts be removed. Here’s the text of the complaint, sent not to me, but to my host:
Date: Thu, Mar 7, 2013 at 7:41 PM
Subject: Defamatory blog
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Please can you give us guidelines on getting this removed. http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=47841 You cannot mock people with illness, or deceased people so openly. It's is disgustiing and poor humour. Please can this be removed?
The laws on defamation are pretty simple, but this incites hate against people with addiction and so openly mocks them. It is not right if we want to be in a civilised society. This is not freedom of speech, this is just victimisation and inciting prejudice against people who need help, and those who cannot answer for themselves, since all the people referred to are deceased.
Is it not fraud, prentending to be someone else also?
Now, I’m no lawyer, but it seems to me that “prentending” [sic] to be someone else when that someone else is not only a public figure but a quite dead one — and more specifically when “he” is, as the context makes clear, not really speaking nor representing himself (these posts are pointed satire, not the transcripts of a seance, for example; just as I had no special deal with Martha Stewart’s to publish “her” prison diaries) — is perfectly in keeping with an entire history of parody and satire. And so quite legal.
Therefore, demands that I take down my post(s), when proffered in the form of attacks on me personally, are probably not the best use of the complainants’ time.
Look: Some may not like the content of these posts — it seems, for instance, that I’ve awakened an entire hive of Corey Haim fanbois and fangals on Twitter (that such a thing even exists I find unspeakably sad), some with names like @NeverforgetHaim — and those critics wish to make it known to me that I’m a despicable human being, with “human” often encased in sneer quotes, while being is, I suppose, something they’re conceding can, as a factual matter, go unchallenged.
And they have every right to express their distaste. But what they can’t do — and shouldn’t do — is try to pretend that what they’re doing is not an attack on my free speech rights, particularly when they go behind my back to try to force a third party to remove what I’ve written.
What you find funny I probably would not; what I find funny you may not. And that’s fine. But your sensibilities, tied to showy indignation and a lot of lofty-sounding horseshit about protecting the feelings of those with addiction issues, are nothing more than your sensibilities — and while you might think protecting the feelings of those suffering from, say, heroin addiction, is doing them a service, I happen to believe that pointing a mirror at them does a whole lot more net good.
– None of which is even relevant to the Corey Haim posts. I’ve used Haim as a kind of foil to comment on contemporary issues. And, given that “he’s” speaking from the “afterlife,” only the most moronic of people, or those most invested as Corey Haim fans (and even then, only some of them; I happen to be a very big fan of License to Drive and Lost Boys, eg, and believe that my posts help in some small way keep Haim’s name alive), could conceivably confuse my musings about Haim in the afterlife with, say, a documentary of his post-being-alive exploits.
Or, to put it more succinctly, blow me, you phony sanctimonious speech fascists.
Not too long ago — and I never mentioned this here — Google Adsense canceled my account because I refused to remove a post in which I dealt with the potential rape of our Ambassador in Benghazi.
Given that, paltry as it was, Google Adsense was one of the few means I had to support this site from the advertising side, it should be clear to any self-appointed speech police that I value my right to express myself as I see fit on my property a whole lot more than I value some pittance I received quarterly for click-through ads.
On this site, you get what you get. I don’t shame easy, I don’t scare easy, and the last thing I’d ever do is surrender my right to express myself in the ways I find most interesting and effective to the task to a bunch of self-righteous, nostalgic thirty-somethings who have taken on as their life’s mission to burnish the image of a dead celebrity whose career he himself sabotaged.
One final note: I have an unsettling feeling that perhaps I’m being outparodied here. Because, come on. Are there really extant tribes of Corey Haim adepts? Willing to admit to being such?
This could just be Feldman pulling my leg. In which case, kudos, tiny dancer.