Perez Hilton aka Mario Armando Lavandeira, Jr. is the worst. I’m not just referring to his much-publicized hit job on Carrie Prejean during the Miss USA contest. I’m referring to his entire career. His website, PerezHilton.com, is a parade of puerile garbage, a sleazy attempt to raise himself to celebrity status by tearing down other celebrities.
So it was not unsatisfying to watch his latest run-in with fellow Obama-supporter, assumed-name-fellow-traveler, Will.i.am. In fact, it was delicious. Perez Hilton/Mario got into a verbal confrontation with Will.i.am, which ended with gay Mario calling Will.i.am a “faggot.” Will.i.am’s manager then got into the act, punching Mario in the eye. To which Mario responded with an enraged and hilarious YouTube video. Because, after all, what better way to respond to being punched than to bitch about it on your blog?
Let’s parse Mario’s hysterical video – and I mean hysterical in the literal sense, since by the end of the video, poor Mario is crying and screaming the F-word.
I am making this video as Mario Lavandeira. What happened to me in Toronto happened to me as a human being and it should not happen to anyone. Violence is never the answer. E-ver. No matter what anyone says. Blood should never be drawn. Another person should never be hit. That’s why people die.
Technically, people die because they stop breathing or their heart stops beating for a significant period of time. They generally don’t die by being punched in the face.
Mario explains that he was a presenter for the Much Music Video Awards. He went to a dress rehearsal on Saturday night. The Black Eyed Peas were rehearsing; Fergie saw Mario. She asked why Mario was mean. He said “I’m not angry at you.” At this point, Mario digresses to explain just how tough he really is:
I’m a big boy. I dish it. I can take it. I will let people have their moment. I know that I say things that can really upset people. That’s never a reason to hit someone. I’ve been doing this for five years now. And nothing like this has ever happened to me. I’ve had people scream at me, write nasty things on other blogs, I’ve had people sue me. I’ve never had someone attack me like this. It’s wrong, and I’m not going to stand for this.
Apparently, he can’t really take it. Because after launching into a diatribe about how “Will.i.am is a coward and a disgusting human being,” Mario starts whining.
I like writing about other people’s drama. I don’t want drama in my own life.
There’s an easy way to avoid drama. Stop tearing down others.
Anyway, Mario continues the story. During the Much Music Awards, one of Will.i.am’s crew elbowed Mario. Several media outlets asked if there was gossip from the awards show, and Mario said he had an “agro”-moment from a member of the Black Eyed Peas.
Mario then went to an after-party. And another after-party. As he’s getting ready to leave, Will.i.am came into the club, seeking Mario like a “heat-seeking missile.” But let’s let Mario take it from here:
He says, “Yo, I need you to do me a favor. I need you to never write about my band on your website again.” Right in my face he was saying this. Very aggressively. I was not wanting or trying to antagonize him. And he was like, “NO. I need you to never write about my band on your website again.” He’s like this close to me and screaming.
The epic saga continues:
And I was like, “Listen, I can’t make any promises, but I’ll try.” And he’s like, “Why are you disrespecting me? Why are you disrespecting me?” And I was like “I’m not disrespecting you.” … I am not afraid of him. And I was saying that in my head. And I told him, “You know what? No. I don’t need to respect you. I don’t respect you.” And that’s when I made the split-second decision that I was gonna say what I thought was the worst possible thing that thug would ever want to hear. I was standing my ground without being violent or physical, which I would never do. I told him, “You know what? I don’t need to respect you, and you’re a fag. Stop being gay, and you’re a faggot.”
The astonishing irony of this statement is apparently lost on Mario/Perez. You don’t see Jews going around calling neo-Nazis “kikes” – Jews recognize that there’s nothing insulting about being Jewish. You don’t see African-Americans going around suggesting that KKK members are “niggers” – they recognize there’s nothing insulting about being black. But Mario believes there is something egregiously wrong with being a “fag.” No wonder GLAAD condemned him.
So Mario left. Will.i.am was outside the club. And here’s where it gets truly funny.
Then his manager, Polo, whom I have met before, from behind comes up to me and clocks me in the eye right here. And punches me two or three times. I am in shock. I did not know what to do. I touch my eye and it was bleeding. I see my fingertips and I am bleeding. I think my eye might be falling out of my head. They carried me away.
Clearly Mario is on a par with the men who stormed the beaches of Guadalcanal and the protestors being shot in Iran.
Nothing like this has ever happened before … And Will.i.am, f— you. You lying m—–f—– … You know very well, I know very well, God knows … you’re a f—– liar … Fergie is ashamed of you and Polo. You’re shameful, you’re disgusting, you’re subhuman.
The hilarity of a paparazzi calling on the mighty authority of Fergie to punish Will.i.am is unparalleled.
Will.i.am followed us to the hotel! Where they were also staying.
Mario is obviously upset that Will.i.am had the temerity to show up in the same zip code after Polo’s vicious, Charles Manson-like assault.
I’m thinking “Oh my God, this person just hit me, what if something else happens?” I was in shock, I didn’t know what to do, I did what should be done … I called the police … They explained to me that they would try to make it but there were actual emergencies going on. But I was in fear of my safety. And I had been assaulted.
The police were in no mood to come down to baby a frantic hypochondriacal quasi-entertainer who got a love tap from another entertainer. Apparently they had something important to do, like clipping their toenails.
Then where Mario stands up for himself, and in the process, becomes the Winston Churchill of domestic violence:
If you are a victim of violence, speak out. Because no one deserves that. Violence is never the answer. I could have told Will.i.am I hope he dies, I could have told him I hope Fergie sits on a stick and impales herself. I could have said anything I wanted. That was not an excuse for their manager to attack me.
Mario has, in a flash, changed the basic legal standard of free speech, which does not actually protect fighting words – and calling someone a “faggot” while telling them not to “be gay” would fall into that category.
The Supreme Court ruled in Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire (1942) that fighting words are not protected by the Constitution because they “by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace.” That doesn’t mean Will.i.am’s manager had a legal right to smack Mario around, as tempting as it would be to pass such legalizing legislation. It just means that Mario’s third-grade understanding of “free speech” is basically incorrect.
But Mario isn’t done. Now he describes his brave response:
I took to Twitter. Because I was in shock and I felt helpless. And that was my very public cry for help. And to all of those people who expressed concern, who called the police, thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Because I am a human being, and no one deserves to be treated that way. Violence is never the answer.
Violence isn’t the answer. Violent laughter is the answer.