Defending Charlie Sheen


In March much of the media denounced the actor Charlie Sheen for his wild behavior, which includes a history of drug use and an affinity for porn stars. Early in the month, a judge stripped Sheen of custody of his twin sons. By mid-month, he had been fired from his role on the CBS show Two and a Half Men for "felony offenses involving moral turpitude." He responded with a series of defiant and sometimes wacky interviews, attacking targets ranging from CBS to Alcoholics Anonymous.

The libertarian stand-up comic Doug Stanhope, two-time winner of Time Out New York's Best Comedy Performance award, offered us three defenses for the TV and movie star:

1 A.A. is voodoo. Any 12-Step program requires a belief in God as its central component. When a judge forces rehab as the only alternative to jail time, the breach of the wall between church and state is egregious.

2 Sheen's pastimes are his own business. Nobody has disputed Charlie Sheen's work ethic. That's why his show is the top-rated sitcom and he is television's highest-paid actor. If your dry cleaner spends his weekend dressed in a diaper burning effigies of Ronald Reagan, your only concern should be if he got the mustard stain out of your shirt.

3 They're taking away his children because he's weird. Sheen passed not one but three drug tests before sheriffs came to take away his children. This means that their only grounds must have been his bizarre behavior. Take note, Tom Cruise, the next time you jump up and down on Oprah's couch.