“What's THAT mean? I'm supposed to give away my magazine for nothing!?”
“What's THAT mean? I'm supposed to fuck for nothing!?”
Larry Flint was born Larry Flintstone in Flint, Michigan, where he was often mistaken for look-alike Michael Moore. Of unfortunate physical appearance, with a large head, bulbous nose, a square jaw, a perpetual beard, unkempt hair, a stocky build, and thick limbs, Flint resembled a Neanderthal and, in high school, was known as “Caveman.” Until later in his life, neither girls nor women, including his mother, with whom he’d sought to lose his virginity by visiting her in his family’s outhouse, had little to do with Flint.
After graduating from high school, Flint changed his name from “Flintstone” to “Flint” and moved to Bedrock, Arkansas, where, after serving in the military and working as a crane operator at a stone quarry, he opened several strip clubs and published Hustle, one of the first pornographic magazines that was distributed to the general public. Flint’s periodical had been preceded by Hu Humper’s Playgurl and others, but Hustle was hardcore, showing not only nude female models, but also nude male models, depicting bare-naked couples coupling. One of his magazine’s features was its “Anal Retentive of the Month,” in which the writer parodied a famous person, such as Jerry Falwell, whose caricatured likeness, framed, as it were, by a gaping anus, illustrated the supposed biographical sketch.
As a child, Flint was poor. He joined the Army at 15, but was discharged a year later, whereupon he joined the Navy and served aboard the Starship Enterprise. After serving honorably under the command of Captain James T. Kirk, he opened a strip club before publishing Hustle.
According to his autobiography, his first sexual experience was with a chicken, which he describes as having been similar in sensation to sexual intercourse with a woman and as offering a bonus: “You don’t have to buy the chicken flowers or candy or say you love her just to get a piece of ass.”
After becoming wealthy as a purveyor of pornography, Flint had a series of plastic surgeries, resembling Michael Jackson, before finally settling on the look shown in this recent photograph. Women, who had previously avoided Flint, now seemed to find him irresistible for some reason. Flint maintains his sudden allure is a result of the surgical alterations to his appearance, but critics contend it is because Hustle earns him approximately $150 million per year. Flint has been married five times.
President Jiminy (“Cricket”) Carter’s sister, Jean Stapleton, star of The Archie Bunk Show and an evangelical Christian, converted Flint, and he began to have visions of God after drinking large quantities of whisky laced with lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) aboard his private jet. In these visions, he says, Jesus told him to “hustle for God,” and, as a result, he changed the title of one of his magazine’s comic strips from “Chester the Molester” to “Chester the Protector” and directed the strip’s creator to show Chester using his baseball bat not to knock out pre-adolescent girls whom he intended to sexually assault but, rather, to knock out perverts who sought to molest these girls. According to a movie, The Peephole vs. Larry Flint, this strip has autobiographical significance.
Flint tends to be loud-mouthed and aggressive, and he constantly schemes ways to improve his working class lot in life, often with unintended results. He has participated (often as a defendant) in several legal battles involving the First Amendment, and he has run for public office a number of times.
Flint won a case before the U. S. Supreme Court (Keeton v. Hustler, 465 U.S. 770 ) by arguing that the justices were “nothing but eight assholes and a token cunt.” In another trial about his refusal to disclose the source of the John DeLorean surveillance tapes that were potentially embarrassing to the FBI, he wore an American flag as a diaper and played The Star-spangled Banner per anum.
During a legal battle related to obscenity in Gwinnett County, Georgia, on March 6, 1978, he and his local lawyer U. Gene Reefer, Jr., were shot from ambush near the county courthouse in Lawrenceville. Some suspect that the “hit” was commissioned by the prosecuting attorney, whose case was not going well, but white supremacist serial killer Joey ("White Boy") Franklin confessed to the shootings, claiming he was outraged by an interracial photo shoot in Hustle. Flint told the shooter that, “instead of shooting me, you should have just shot your load or turned the page.” Flint's injuries left him paralyzed from the waist down, which he calls “ironic for a pornographer.” He adds that, as a result of his paralysis, he has become “adept at providing oral sex.” Blaming God for the shooting, Flint renounced his faith and moved with his wife of the moment, Adele, to a mansion in Bel Air, Californicate, and disowned Pebbles when his daughter became a Christian who made it her mission to oppose pornography. She claims that Flint sexually abused her as a child, when he was still proud to call himself her papa, but Flint maintains that he did not do so, because "oral sex isn't sex."
He summarizes his philosophy of criminal justice, publishing, and free speech in a famous quotation: "You take a picture of a murder, which is illegal, and you can win Picture of the Year for Time magazine. You take a picture of two people having sex, which is not illegal, and you can get thrown in jail."
The Peephole vs. Larry Flint
A film by Miles O. Foreskin, The Peephole vs. Larry Flint chronicles the trials and tribulations of Flint's life as a purveyor of filth and a protector of what Flint calls "First Amendment rights to be an asshole." Starring Woody Hornyson as Flint, the movie centers on a community's objections to a peephole that Flint installs in the ladies' room of the Liberty Baptist Church. Although the film was praised by critics, it was "unappreciated" by the public, Flint says, which "would rather watch a snuff film than something with merit that explores Constitutional issues and the functions of religious bodies in modern America." Flint has a cameo appearance in the film, playing a recipient of his magazine's "Anal Retentive of the Month" award, a Plexiglas colon shaped like Larry Flint.