Larry Flynt takes on the State of Michigan
Upon learning that the State of Michigan is blocking Internet access on employee computers with a heavy hand, Hustler magazine founder and First Amendment crusader Larry Flynt is taking on the state’s bureaucrats. As the founder of a multi-million-dollar corporate empire, I can understand if the state doesn’t want its employees ogling over hard-core porn on the taxpayer’s dime, but to block access to news stories and humor, that’s the most ludicrous form of censorship I’ve ever heard of, Flynt said.Flynt learned of the reported censorship from Macomb County Commissioner Carey Torrice. We were having problems picking up results at our post-election party, said Torrice, who lost her seat in the Aug. 3 primary. When I called the Secretary of State, I was told that all state access to my records were blocked because of ˜tasteless content’ that could be ˜potentially damaging.’ Further probing revealed that the state’s Department of Censorship had blocked all content related to Torrice because she had posted racy pictures of herself online two years ago and recent allegations that she and her husband were stalking her county commissioner opponent, Jeffrey Sprys.It’s gotten ridiculous, said a state employee who asked to remain anonymous. We can’t even watch Pure Michigan ads on You Tube at work in case we see one of those spoof ads of a horse taking a leak on Mackinac Island a bunch of rednecks with mullets watching drag racing at the Gibraltar Trade Center. It’s anything but ridiculous, said Cherry Ontop, assistant chief of the state’s Department of Censorship. We work diligently at trying to make state employees believe that State of Michigan is a great place to work and live. With the limited talent we have at the state level, we can’t afford to have employees with bad attitudes deal with people who are applying for food stamps and unemployment benefits. Flynt said Hustler is devoting its entire October issue to the State of Michigan. The magazine is taking on topics, such as, Things That Go on Behind Closed Doors That Michigan Bureaucrats Don’t Want You to See, Maiden Michigan and Biker Babes on the Highway to Hell. Torrice signed a contract to appear on the cover of the Michigan issue. As a public servant, I’m committed to protecting First Amendment rights and am extremely grateful to Mr. Flynt for taking on this cause, Torrice said. It’s our most political issue yet, but for a state that’s been plagued with the reputation for having unattractive women like (Congresswoman) Candace Miller and (Sen.) Debbie Stabenow, we also want to change the face — and other body parts — of Michigan, Flynt said.