By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
Love her or love to see her innards devoured by her own self-righteous bile, you have to hand it to radio flog-jock Laura Schlessinger when it comes to scaring up business. On July 26, Schlessinger went on her nationally syndicated radio show and told listeners that the day before, she had been in South Coast Plaza surf shop Beach Access with her son. There, she said, she'd found a pornographic magazine called Big Brotherin full view of customers, many of them children. She said she took the magazine to the store manager and asked if he was aware it was published by Larry Flynt (he was) and if he was aware it was pornographic (he wasn't because it's not).
While Schlessinger was still ranting, the phone started ringing at Beach Access. Schlessinger's minions—whose loyalty is like that of a junkyard dog for the tobacco-stained brute who beats it—called in the hundreds, more than a few lacing their calls with profanity. It got so bad that additional employees were called in to handle store duties while others just handled the obscene phone calls.
Others called or came in to say they'd be buying something just to show their support for Beach Access, a sparkling boutique—what other kind would you find in South Coast Plaza?—with merchandise neatly displayed, exactly no suggestive pictures or images on the walls, and a well-dressed, cheery staff. It's about as extreme and porn-friendly as the Gap. Toward the end of last week, employees, who had become used to giving reporters the number to chain owner Tom Moore's Irvine headquarters, said they hoped the whole thing was winding down.
That was about the time Howard Stern went on his nationally syndicated radio show to say that Schlessinger was a "witch" and a "filthy human being" for using a small businessman like Moore to get at Flynt, who, of course, exposed Schlessinger literally and figuratively when he purchased nude photos of her. Stern also called her a hypocrite for using sex to boost ratings and push product.
Some of that product—$10 mouse pads, $20 screensavers—she pushes on her Dr. Laura Web site (www.drlaura.com). The home-page introduction claims the site deals with "a wide range of topics geared toward strengthening character, conscience and morality," but mostly it's about sex. In fact, Big Brother's July issue has nothing on the Dr. Laura site when it comes to forbidden love—whether it be man on woman, man on man, woman on woman, man or woman on boy or girl, or librarian on just about everyone.
Click onto the Dr. Laura Magazine, and you'll find the lead article deals with kids accessing porn on library computers and how librarians don't want to do anything about it. This is followed by a piece about porn software. And there's a touching piece—figuratively speaking—by a gay man "apologizing for the intolerance of gay activists."
Last month's lead piece is about adult-child sex. But don't worry, there's public-library porn stuff in this one, too. There's also a piece about Monica Lewinsky, a young woman who did something stupid, though, unlike other young women who've done stupid things, she wasn't married when she did it, and you won't find nude photos of her doing it posted on the Internet.
As for Big Brother, what Schlessinger missed was that, like Schlessinger, Flynt deals in sex because it sells. When it doesn't sell, he doesn't sell it. As longtime readers of Big Brother will tell you, the magazine, which started publishing in 1992, has actually been toned down since Flynt bought it in 1996 so he could place it on more newsstands. Pre-Flynt, Big Brother was a mag in which you'd find a picture of a plastic vagina with skate ball bearings placed inside. No more. The July issue includes two mildly titillating pictures—a girl in a bikini (middle of Page 64, for those reading along at home) and a girl in a red one-piece swimsuit (Page 65).Big Brother topics? Features on pros Adam McNatt and Mathias Ringstrom and a piece about a pro contest in Tampa and one at Euro Disneyland ("We can't imagine a more horrifying locale"), as well as CD reviews, movie reviews, skatepark reviews and video-game reviews. There's not a single mention of pedophilia (unless you count the two guys in diapers, Page 68) or librarians or gay sex.
No, if you're bi-curious, you'll want to check out Dr. Laura's letters, wherein California Assemblyman Stephen Baldwin (R-El Cajon) writes about the gay agenda in public schools and offers a link where someone can read his entire report on this subject, which he submitted to the state Assembly two years ago. In it, he debunks many "myths of the homosexual," such as homosexuality being a genetic fact: "If being homosexual was unchangeable, why are so many homosexuals changing back to heterosexuality after counseling?" Baldwin also points out that the number of homosexuals is vastly inflated. Instead of the 10 percent of the population usually cited, the real percentage is somewhere between .5 percent and 2 percent. Despite these measly numbers, Baldwin claims this super race is able to run labor unions, write curriculum, and bully Sacramento and Washington for special treatment.