Civility and the Dirty Hippies. It Never Changes.

It may not be particularly helpful in the conflict over appropriate language in civil discourse to have someone on your side nicknamed Dr Gonzo, but I was in the bookstore this afternoon and saw a discounted copy of Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in America. I picked it up and opened it at random and saw this on page 194:


Upon receiving Thompson’s complaint about the CBS Morning News being taken off the air, an annoyed Allen wrote back, taking issue with his foul language and rude asides. It was not the type of reply Thompson was expecting.

July 10, 1969
Woody Creek, CO

Dave Allen
Assistant General Manager
Grand Junction, CO

Dear Mr. Allen…
  Thanks for your letter of July 7. I was particularly struck by the fact that you “take exception to the profanities utilized in (my) letter” . . . and to that I can only say Fuck Off.
  I take exception to 99% of the cheap goddamn garbage you put on the air. Your scheduling is a monument to everything rotten in America . . . and you have the gall to sit there and call my July 3 letter “profane.” You ignorant freak; from now on I’ll address you on your own level.
  You’re a fine example of the kind of waterhead who has crippled the whole television medium. If you think my letter was profane, you should take a look at the Real World sometime–the world you tried to censor when you cut CBS News.
  But it’s still out there, old sport, and it’s closing in. Did you really think you could check out of reality by fleeing Pennsylvania? Why don’t you send Gunsmoke‘s Marshal Dillon out to arrest me for my profanity?

Hunter S. Thompson