In Defense Of Mark Levin
Rod Dreher has a problem with Mark Levin. Mark, of all people, doesn't need defending. He does fine on his own. But I have some thoughts for Dreher.
Conor Friedersdorf listened to a Levin bit the other day, in which the radio talker had the following exchange:
MARK LEVIN: Answer me this, are you a married woman? Yes or no?
MARK LEVIN: Well I don't know why your husband doesn't put a gun to his temple. Get the hell out of here.
This is the same Mark Levin whose book is a huge bestseller. A cretin who would say something like this on his radio show is a big deal among a lot of conservatives. Good grief. Having spent about 15 unpleasant minutes listening to this creep, I cannot imagine why anybody pays attention to him. Seriously, where is the pleasure in listening to this kind of trashmouth? If I were on the left, I would make sure that people thought that Mark Levin was the face of the Republican Party and the conservative movement.
I've admired Mark for years, going back to when he would appear on cable news shows. His grasp of the Constitution and issues involving the Supreme Court is unmatched by any other political talking head, or radio talker of whom I am aware.
He penned both Men in Black and Liberty and Tyranny, two truly stand out books amid the usual political writing we see from former government officials. His Rescuing Sprite revealed a softer, more human side.
Mark is President of the Landmark Legal Foundation, a prominent and extremely reputable agent for justice and openness grounded on the Right.
I'll admit that some rather small bits of Mark's humor haven't always been my cup of tea over the years; though I find the comment above hilarious and know Mark, who I've been fortunate enough to meet, would apply it equally were a married liberal male caller serving as his foil on a particular call.
I've known many brilliant men. Mark is one. Amazingly, he is also gifted with the ability to entertain a large and growing audience, as witnessed by his ratings. And his and other radio talk shows are, after all, infotainment, in a very real sense. Post-Howard Stern, should society determine that anything Mark Levin has ever said on the air should be out of bounds? Really?
But given Mark's long list of significant accomplishments Dreher seems to want to ignore, only some of which are listed above, and Mark's well-known contributions to the conservative movement … I'm simply left asking myself, who is this fellow Rod Dreher? What is it, really, that he has done, accomplished, or contributed, which gives him license to take some few comments he, or others might not like, and dismiss Levin as just some virulent gasbag the Right should shun?
When Dreher can answer that question to my satisfaction, perhaps I'll consider viewing his grousing as something more than a small fish with an even smaller stickleback up his butt carping up a food chain I doubt he'll ever climb.
Finally, having read at least a bit of Dreher over the years, how his regular readers keep from putting guns to their temples, I'll never know.