Showing a complete lack of understanding about the First Amendment, this week’s fool is Georgia State Rep. Earnest Smith. Smith is the legislator who introduced a bill to ban obscene photoshopping. When a blogger responded by putting Smith into an obscene photoshopped picture, Smith did not react well.
Smith claimed not to know who placed his face over the body of a porn star despite the website and photoshopped-image maker clearly claiming responsibility for the satirical picture of Smith. Smith then made the outrageous comment that it was not constitutional to make fun of him:
“No one has a right to make fun of anyone. You have a right to speak, but no one has a right to disparage another person. It’s not a First Amendment right.”
How can anyone be elected to office and believe something like that? There is not a First Amendment exemption forbidding the making of fun of people. Politicians have always been the target of altered photos and caricatures. Take that right away and the right to criticize government officials is in doubt.
Predictably, Smith has become the target of photoshopped images throughout the internet. While he probably doesn’t appreciate the First Amendment any greater, he is certain to understand it a lot better.