• Comedian pushing for George Carlin street naming clears Catholic church hurdle

    Seven Dirty Words You Can’t Say on W. 121st Street: George Carlin Is Evil And Will Corrupt And Ruin Our Children. Okay, that may be more than 7 words, but the absurd message coming from the church on the same block has been shut down yesterday in a miraculous (no pun intended) turn of events.

    Yesterday the campaign for George Carlin Way leapt over its first and biggest hurdle. Last time we updated you, the group attempting to rename the late comedian’s childhood block faced major opposition from the Corpus Christi School, namely, its priest, Father Rafferty. A private meeting was held on Monday due to a scheduling conflict for the next community board meeting (which would have coincided with Holy Thursday, before Easter). The meeting between Rafferty and comedian Kevin Bartini, leader of this comedically holy crusade, was mediated by community board chair Cynthia Thompson.

    As the church continued to shoot down very fair compromises, Thompson declared that she was going to greenlight the proposal for a district community board vote. She announced several times that the motion has the votes and will likely pass the second hurdle, the community board meeting on April 19. When it passes that phase, the street renaming will be thrown into an omnibus bill for the city council to vote on collectively with all other street renamings for the year.

    This is a major win for both the legacy of George Carlin, his fans, and the right to keep religion separate from local government. Carlin was a proud freethinker and a fighter for First Amendment rights in this country. Honoring the street he grew up on and learned to be funny on is most appropriate for the “dirty, lewd, bawdy, lascivious” (to use his own words) comedian.

    Billy Procida

    Laughspin editor-in-chief Billy Procida is a stand-up comedian in New York City. He hosts The Manwhore Podcast where he talks to women he's hooked up with about sex, dating, and why they didn't work out. Reach him on Twitter.

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