For the first time in COED’s history, we’re dedicating an entire weekend of content to one person. Who could be worthy of such an honorable distinction? Well, he’s the reason we, and every other red-blooded American media-savvy male got into publishing in the first place. He took men’s entertainment to an entirely new level by stimulating the mind and eye with a combination of provocative pictorials, witty illustrations, gripping fiction from renowned authors, controversial interviews, and heavy fodder for debate.
Many fundamentalists and conservatives paint him as the devil, the harbinger of immorality and sin, while those more open-minded folk take the time to peel away the layers of his humanity and appreciate him for who he is – a well-intentioned pioneer with flaws like anyone else.
Of course, the man we’re focusing on for the next 72 hours is Hugh Marston Hefner, founder, publisher, philanthropist, father, husband, Chief Creative Officer of Playboy Enterprises, Inc., Editor-in-Chief of Playboy magazine, and master of the Playboy Mansion. Why did we pick this weekend? Well, Saturday, April 9th, 2011 is Mr. Hefner’s 85th birthday. What do you get the man who has everything? How about a blush?
Over the next three days, we hope to show a bigger, better picture of the man who discriminates when it comes to what to “makes the issue” but who doesn’t discriminate when it comes to issues like civil rights – the equal treatment of ALL people with respect to protection of the law and to the enjoyment of life, liberty, and property. We’re not talking only slave / land owners, we’re talking EVERYONE regardless of age, creed, race, or color.
People tend to forget about his accomplishments and contributions to society. Younger generations tend to pigeonhole him as the ultimate bachelor, a womanizer, a purveyor of porn and of nothing else. Few realize the sacrifices he made when Playboy first launched in 1953. Anyone who was alive to remember those times can tell you the world was a MUCH different place – one in which censorship blanketed the nation, stifling creativity and freedom of expression. With McCarthyism striking fear into the public, Hefner refused to remain quiet. Without Mr. Hefner’s efforts, where would America be in 2011?
Luckily, he didn’t cower in the face of oppression. Instead, he showed us that the human body is an art form, not a disgrace; that we should demand what was promised in the Constitution and Bill of Rights. More importantly, he showed us that it’s okay to have a difference of opinion as long as you’re respectful of someone else’s.
Now, we show HIM how thankful we are with a weekend that we hope will make it into his scrapbook. We’ll be updating this page throughout the weekend with Hef-tastic content. We hope you enjoy it as much as we will.
Happy birthday, Mr. Hefner.
– From your understudies at COED.