[National Post] If it were only the career of one stand-up that were at stake, the Earle affair might not be so troubling. (Mr. Earle is holding a “Comics for Freedom” benefit on Saturday at Toronto’s Comedy Bar, 945a Bloor Street West.) But if hecklers are legally protected — and stand-ups have to worry about facing legal expenses for having defended themselves verbally on stage from distracting drunks and drama queens — stand-up comedy will die like a fish out of water in Canada. Who would put in the brutal hours needed to master it under such a threat, or dare come to this country to perform? An entire art form will have been euthanized in the name of preventing “offensiveness,” and what others can then regard themselves as safe?