Interview:1997/08/13 Politically Incorrect
- Guests on this program were: G. Gordon Liddy, Marilyn Manson, Florence Henderson, Lakita Garth
Bill Maher: All right. Welcome to the show. Let's meet our panel. She is an entertainer, activist, and a former Miss Black California. Her forthcoming rap CD is called "Lakita." Lakita Garth. [ Applause ] Hello, beautiful.
Lakita Garth: Hi. Nice to see you again.
Bill Maher: Thank you so much. Nice to see you. Star of stage, screen and television, she's known worldwide as Mrs. Carol Brady. The very Brady Florence Henderson! [ Cheers and applause ] Hello, Mrs. Brady. Good to see you.
Florence Henderson: Thank you very much. [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: Author, actor, plumber and talk-radio host. No one else is quite, G. Gordon Liddy. [ Cheers and applause ]
Bill Maher: Gordon, good to see you.
Gordon Liddy: Thank you. [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: And he is the rock music phenomenon who the governor of Oklahoma calls "Proof that society's moral values continue to crumble." A huge CD hit, by the way, this is a great album, "Anti-Christ Superstar." Marilyn Manson. [ Cheers and applause ]
Bill Maher: Hi, man.
Marilyn Manson: Thank you.
Bill Maher: Okay. [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: All right. I'm glad you're all here. We have, of course, a very controversial figure here -- Mrs. Brady. [ Laughter ]
Florence Henderson: Look out.
Gordon Liddy: I want to protest something.
Bill Maher: You want to protest all ready? I haven't even asked a question.
Gordon Liddy: I know it, but I want to protest something. I have seen the promotional material for this show. Here you got a guy, who as far as I know, has never even been busted for being -- you know, impersonating a human being or anything. And I have got nine felonies for which I am totally unrepellant, and he is supposed to be the bad guy. Now what's going on? Where are standards in this country?
Bill Maher: That's a good point. You have been to prison. They have tried to arrest you, but they haven't succeeded.
Marilyn Manson: Right.
Bill Maher: Right.
Marilyn Manson: It's the lipstick. If we put some lipstick on him, I think everything will change. [ Laughter ] [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: I'd like to see you try. [ Laughter ] Don't Christian groups need somebody to protest against? Isn't there a symbiotic relationship between whoever they're against, be it you or the gays or whatever, abortion clinics, don't they need each other?
Florence Henderson: Or Kathie Lee gifford? [ Laughter ]
Marilyn Manson: There's an old saying that the devil has always been the church's best friend, because he's kept them in business. And I think, like you're saying, they picked me to be that, but I think -- I don't mind the protesting, I just wish that they would get the facts straight, because they think that I do a lot of things, but I am really about individuality. And that's really the bottom line.
Lakita Garth: I think you guys have it totally backwards. You are just -- you guys have it totally backward. You're saying that the church needs people like Marilyn and other people to stay in business when actually Marilyn wouldn't even exist --
Bill Maher: Manson.
Lakita Garth: Well, Brian, if we really want to get real here, because that's his real name. That's what his mama named him. But the point is, is that -- [ Audience stirs ]
Bill Maher: Oh, do you call him Cassius Clay, too? [ Laughter ] [ Applause ] >> But you know what? Even the name of his album, "Anti-Christ Superstar," if there was no Christ, there -- you know, he's -- Christ is -- he needs Christ to stay in business. Because if he's trying to push the envelope, against whom? And that's the whole point. I think that when people are talking about the --
Bill Maher: But Christ is really a metaphor here.
Lakita Garth: Yeah, but they show up at these concerts and they protest. I think it's a sad commentary when we have put it on the slate that only the Christian right thinks that there's something wrong here. I don't know.
Bill Maher: Now, there are rumors about what you do. And then there's the reality of what you do. There is, for example, you do rip pages out of the Bible in your concert. You do wipe your ass with the American flag.
Marilyn Manson: Mm-hmm.
Bill Maher: Some of these things, you have to admit, are controversial.
Marilyn Manson: Absolutely. They're designed to make people think. But the point with the Bible or a flag is to say, "It's only as valid as you make it in your heart."
Florence Henderson: It's all about perception, isn't it, Marilyn?
Bill Maher: Manson!
Marilyn Manson: A piece of paper or a piece of cloth doesn't mean anything. It's what you believe. And I want people to think about what they believe. I want them to consider if everything they've been taught, if that's what they want to believe or if that's what they've been told that they have to believe.
Lakita Garth: I agree with that. [ Applause ] I do agree with that point, in the sense of this -- I have more respect and some people you hear me out when you hear this. I have more respect for this young man than I have for the majority of people in this country, because 86% of Americans claim to be Christian, Judeo-Christian, whatever else, and they're not. They're hypocrites. But the point is, is that when I see this young man, you know, it does draw a line in the standard. We need to realize we are in a cultural war and everyone wants to straddle the fence. Either you are Anti-Christ or you are Christ. It's as simple as that.
Bill Maher: Don't you think all of us have both in us?
Lakita Garth: I don't. No, I don't. I don't wipe my rear end with the American flag. And, you know, I don't --
Bill Maher: But you don't have evil --
Lakita Garth: I don't see that giving somebody oral sex on stage --
Florence Henderson: Have been to this show? I haven't seen that. [ Laughter and applause ]
Bill Maher: I gotta take a break. We'll come back to this. [ Applause ] [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: Okay. Some of us are old enough to remember what a rock band had to do in former days to upset parents. And it really wasn't very much, right? I mean, the Beatles, when they first came out, had long hair. It wasn't really much longer than yours, Gordon. [ Laughter ] I'm not kidding. It was not long hair, and they were apoplectic --
Florence Henderson: You know, talking about that and how people look and their perception and the way people look at you and go, "My God." But you know what? I look back -- [ Laughter ] Seriously, I look back at the early "Brady Bunch" days. I looked like the Anti-Christ. [ Laughter ] With that hair and the skirt and the platforms, right?
Bill Maher: We went through some of the things over the course of time. Now, in 1956, when Elvis went on "Ed Sullivan," they wouldn't show him below the waist. Do you know this? I mean, this was history.
Gordon Liddy: Yeah, I remember it.
Bill Maher: Because that would upset, I guess, America. In 1967, Mick Jagger went on with the Rolling Stones, "Ed Sullivan," couldn't sing the lyrics "Let's spend the night together." He had to change it to "Let's spend some time together." And I think, along the way, if you put what the rock groups were prohibited from doing with what kids were doing, there is a difference. I mean, in 1956, when that was what pushed the envelope, the troubles in the school were chewing gum and patent-leather shoes that could see up a skirt. Today, they're throwing babies out with the bath water, literally. Now, isn't there a connection there?
Marilyn Manson: Well, I think if parents spent more time trying to censor rock music and art and movies and things like that, and they spent the time teaching their kids to appreciate and understand those things, and to know what's right and what's wrong, I think that's more time spent more valuable.
Lakita Garth: It's less about Marilyn, but more about the hundreds of thousands of young people. What motivates them to go out, and not just him, but you know, Ozzy Osbourne in the '70s, he was real big. What motivates them to go out and buy, a so-called "Demon-possessed" young man's album?
Florence Henderson: But LaQuita, more importantly, what possesses him to go out on stage?
Lakita Garth: No, no, no, no, no. But see, that's the whole thing. If there were no crowd, if there was no market, you know, he would be out of business. If there weren't people buying his records and making it platinum --
Gordon Liddy: Let me cut to the chase here.
Bill Maher: Gordon wants to break in, so to speak. [ Laughter ] [ Applause ]
Florence Henderson: Ohh, Bill. [ Applause ]
Gordon Liddy: The drift of this conversation seems to be, at least what I seem to get from you, is the question -- is Manson and others, are they responsible for the kind of society we have today? And I think that that is absolutely backwards. We have a society today with totally without reference to Manson here, in which it is perfectly permitted, and it happens thousands of times throughout the year, when they take a viable baby from a mother, all the way except to the top of the head, shove a scissors through the base of its skull and suck out its brains, and you're complaining about him?
Bill Maher: I'm not complaining about him. I like him.
Marilyn Manson: Well, also think about this. If you want to blame rock music for things, think about what the Bible has done. What about Heaven's Gate or Jim Jones or the Ku Klux Klan? What they do in the name of Christ.
Lakita Garth: They totally defy the Bible. The Bible says, if you love God and hate your brother, you are a liar, and God is not in you. Obviously, you have not read that. Because any Klansman --
Marilyn Manson: No, I've read the Bible. I'm just saying what people do in the name of the Bible.
Lakita Garth: Any Klansman who tries to recite the Bible is a liar, and God isn't in him. So, if we're gonna quote the Bible -- you complain that people take you out of context, don't take the Bible out of context. [ Applause ] The majority of people --
Marilyn Manson: I am saying --
Gordon Liddy: He is not taking the Bible out of context, he is taking Friedrich Nietzsche out of context. That's what he doing. [ Laughter and applause ]
Bill Maher: But the Bible certainly has been the inspiration for an amazing amount of unbible-like activity.
Marilyn Manson: That's what I'm saying.
Florence Henderson: Absolutely.
Lakita Garth: And there has been more unbible-like activity -- look at our century, look at the 20th Century. You know, all the mass murders and killings and more people have been murdered outside of the name of religion than have been in the name of religion in this century. That was just in "The New York Times" a year ago.
Bill Maher: And that's your big claim to fame? [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: No, it's not. But why does everybody want to put the tag on, you know, "Oh, the Bible is evil," or "We need to question" --
Marilyn Manson: No, I'm not saying that. I like the Bible. I'm just saying I don't like the way people misuse it. Just as much as people could misuse music.
Lakita Garth: Then if you like it, then be the standard and do it. That's the problem.
Marilyn Manson: I like it as a book. Just like I like "The Cat In The Hat." [ Laughter ] [ Applause ]
Lakita Garth: People say they're something and they're not.
Bill Maher: All right, I gotta break. Lakita, I'm sorry. [ Applause ] [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: Okay. Now, turnabout is fair play. We've been talking about Marilyn Manson and his responsibility to society and so forth. Now, you also have a record out. And I have the lyrics to one of your songs, which I think is more irresponsible than anything on one of his records.
Lakita Garth: Well, shoot. Go ahead.
Bill Maher: Yes. It talks about condoms. And it says -- "Like the condoms we sell 'em, but we won't tell 'em it ain't safe even if you got 'em." So you're telling kids --
Lakita Garth: That's not what it says.
Bill Maher: That's what the lyric says. "Don't you know they got holes" --
Lakita Garth: I don't think you listen --
Bill Maher: It says -- "Don't you know they got holes you can't see. They might stop a baby but it hardly stops vd."
Lakita Garth: That's right. That is correct.
Bill Maher: That's not correct.
Lakita Garth: That is correct. You need to do your homework. You check the centers for disease control. [ Audience oohs ]
Bill Maher: You're telling --
Lakita Garth: When I testified before the Senate in Washington, D.C. --
Bill Maher: Were they there?
Lakita Garth: The surgeon general, when I testified, it was true. Condoms were never designed to prevent people from getting anything except for pregnant. We encourage people to use them to stop STDs. There are at least over 50 STDs, counting all the different strains that are out there. 20 of them, at least 20 of them a condom really can't help you with. Condoms don't care.
Bill Maher: How can it stop what stops pregnancy without stopping everything else?
Lakita Garth: Because the HIV virus is about 450 times smaller than a sperm cell. And if you magnify that -- and if you magnify that, that's about the size of a football field, would be the size of one sperm cell.
Bill Maher: So what you're telling horny teenagers that the only thing you can do is be abstinent, and condoms don't work. So kids are not going to use condoms because they're going to listen to you and figure, "Well, why should we even use condoms?" And that to me is irresponsible.
Marilyn Manson: No sex equals violence.
Bill Maher: No sex equals violence?
Gordon Liddy: You're making an irresponsible impression --
Marilyn Manson: It's suppression of sex throughout history that's made people so violent, I think.
Lakita Garth: That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard of. [ Laughter ]
Marilyn Manson: If you're feeling guilty about having sex --
Lakita Garth: I have never known anyone --
Marilyn Manson: Everybody wants to have sex. The world was created through sex.
Lakita Garth: Yes, this is true.
Gordon Liddy: The irresponsible assumption is -- the one that you made is that teenage children are going to have sex no matter what. That's not necessarily true at all.
Lakita Garth: No, it's not.
Bill Maher: Oh, Gordon. [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: It's not.
Gordon Liddy: I had a lot of teenage companions when I was a teenager, and they were not running around getting laid.
Marilyn Manson: But he was also in prison, so he's got a different -- [ Laughter ] Different outlook.
Gordon Liddy: But I wasn't as good-looking as you are. [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: As far as being responsible, I take full responsibility for every word that I speak when I go out and speak to thousands of young people. And on top of that, I'm encouraging them to do something that is good.
Florence Henderson: And you certainly know how to speak, LaQuita, let me tell you that!
Lakita Garth: Well, thank you. Thank you.
Marilyn Manson: Let me ask you this. If I don't get laid, can I sue her, because of her lyrics? [ Laughter ] [ Applause ]
Lakita Garth: No, because I don't have anything. I don't have anything to give. But I would invite you to come out and hang with me and some of my friends sometime.
Marilyn Manson: We can do a show together.
Lakita Garth: I'd like to.
Marilyn Manson: I'm open-minded. I don't protest Sunday schools or anything.
Lakita Garth: I would love to have dinner and just shoot the breeze with you.
Bill Maher: And then you could be with Ted Kennedy one night. [ Laughter ] [ Applause ] I'm sorry.
Florence Henderson: Aren't you hoping that your cd makes a lot of money just like Marilyn hopes that he does? Isn't that what it's about?
Lakita Garth: No, it's not. Because I turned down more jobs than I have ever worked, because of, I will not expose my body or I won't use foul language or I won't spread my legs for just any old Joe that comes around. I have a standard that I live up to. And, you know, I'm very frank, up front. I'm very honest about what I believe.
Florence Henderson: I hope that you will always be able to live like that.
Lakita Garth: Well, you know what? I think we should encourage other young people to do that.
Florence Henderson: I hope you don't have many challenges in life.
Lakita Garth: I have very many challenges in life.
Florence Henderson: Do you?
Lakita Garth: Yes. And I would like for you to come to dinner with me and learn the challenges.
Marilyn Manson: It's very admirable to be idealistic. You know, I want people to think, but I'm not trying to think I can save the world.
Lakita Garth: You can't save the world because you're not Christ.
Marilyn Manson: Maybe they only deserve to be entertained before they're all destroyed.
Bill Maher: I couldn't agree more.
Florence Henderson: You can't judge who is Christ and who isn't. He may have more Christ in him than you do. You can't really say that. [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: And that's from Mrs. Brady! All right, we gotta take a break. We'll be right back. [ Applause ] [ Applause ]
Bill Maher: Now, you were about to say, Marilyn Manson. >> Yeah, just about perspectives. When we were talking about Christ and me being not like Christ. I mean, if you look at things from a different point of view, one person could see Christ as being someone a lot like me. Someone with long hair, had a lot of fans, a lot of people that followed. He had 12 disciples, that could have been his posse for all we know. [ Laughter ] He hung out with hookers. He drank. People were against him.
Lakita Garth: But being like Christ is different than being Christ.
Bill Maher: And they killed him.
Marilyn Manson: And they killed him.
Lakita Garth: But being like Christ is different than being Christ. I think you're not Christ. Just like you're not Hitler. Your not Genghis Khan.
Marilyn Manson: I don't want to be Christ.
Lakita Garth: And you're not anyone who has lived and who is no longer here on this planet. And so, you know, if we're going to look at what people say --
Marilyn Manson: What about Elvis? [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: Definitely not Elvis. Because -- you don't swing your hips like he does.
Marilyn Manson: You haven't seen me. [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: You'd be surprised what I have seen. [ Applause ] You'd be surprised at what I have seen.
Bill Maher: Mrs. Brady, I think we've made a love connection.
Marilyn Manson: I think it's on.
Florence Henderson: You know, we're going to the prom together. [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: This is what's interesting here. And this is something I have always wanted to ask you, Marilyn.
Bill Maher: Manson!
Lakita Garth: No, he's Brian, okay. Whatever. Since we're on national television I want to ask you. What standards do you have and where do you draw the line as far as what is good and what is evil?
Marilyn Manson: I have basic principles that kind of exist in all religions, even Christianity.
Lakita Garth: Such as?
Marilyn Manson: Well, the fundamentals. You know, you don't kill people. A basic good person.
Lakita Garth: Okay. So --
Marilyn Manson: Probably the same as yours.
Lakita Garth: No, they're not the same. [ Laughter ] Guaranteed they're not the same. You are a minister of the church of satan.
Marilyn Manson: I'm not a minister of anything.
Lakita Garth: Okay. 'Cause I don't know, "Rolling stone" I have heard that you were into the church of satan. I assume you read "The satanic Bible" by Anton lavey.
Marilyn Manson: I read both Bibles. I read the Christian Bible, too.
Lakita Garth: Okay. Right. Okay, and we know that the Bible has ten commandments, not ten suggestions. And there is one commandment in the book of satan. What is that commandment?
Marilyn Manson: I don't know. I don't preach either Bible.
Bill Maher: "Kill LaQuita Garth." [ Laughter ]
Lakita Garth: You don't? They would like to.
Marilyn Manson: I mean, I follow basic principles like anybody else would.
Bill Maher: What people forget, what people don't see is that when you're a 14-year-old or a 16-year-old, and you go to his concert, it enunciates what you're feeling. Do you remember what you felt like at that age? I do.
Gordon Liddy: Yeah, I want to bug my parents.
Lakita Garth: I didn't.
Marilyn Manson: Isolation.
Bill Maher: Isolation, exactly.
Bill Maher "Politically Incorrect" 1997