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John Wayne's Racism Exhumed

dreamer20

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As was the case for Columbus, nowadays, a review of actor John Wayne's unsavory history has caused an uproar:

"I believe in white supremacy": John Wayne’s notorious 1971 Playboy interview goes viral on Twitter
‘I believe in white supremacy’: John Wayne’s notorious 1971 Playboy interview goes viral on Twitter

Past racist and homophobic comments made by John Wayne have now led for calls to remove his name from the John Wayne Airport in Orange County.
John Wayne Airport on Chopping Block Due to Actor's Extreme Racism

Discuss.
 

dreamer20

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‘I believe in white supremacy’: John Wayne’s notorious 1971 Playboy interview goes viral on Twitter

Article Excerpts:
In the 1971 Playboy interview, John Wayne railed against “perverted films,” giving the interviewer, Richard Warren Lewis, two examples when asked: “Easy Rider” and “Midnight Cowboy.” The actor described the characters in the latter film with a homophobic slur, then went on to extol the virtues of sexual intercourse between men and women.

“We can’t all of a sudden get down on our knees and turn everything over to the leadership of the blacks. I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsiblity. I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people,” he said.

John Wayne’s life has long been noted for its contradictions. In a 1996 review of a Wayne biography, the Washington Post noted the deferments that allowed Wayne to escape serving in World War II.“Other actors did risk all, and some lost, returning to the public’s indifference. Some of them were supplanted by Wayne himself, who took his deferments until service became a moot point, a fact he was ashamed of for the rest of his life,” the report noted.

^^These views have also been expressed by certain persons opposed to having a black candidate for POTUS from 2008 and beyond. I see why Donald Trump is not only a big fan of John Wayne, but has emulated him to a tee.

Trump accuses Democrats of 'incredible stupidity' over John Wayne's white supremacy remarks
Trump accuses California Democrats of 'incredible stupidity' in row over John Wayne's white supremacy remarks
 

phonehome

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First off it is not an exaggeration to call many of his movies "classic's

An y of "Rooster Coburn" movies pretty darn good, The Shootist, any movie where you can end up with Ron Howard and Jimmy Stewart in pretty good roles, is not half bad

The one big criticism you used to hear was that in most of his movies he was "just playing himself" and not really "acting'

All that being said it was always a bit of head scratcher that they named the airport after him anyway.

He was not a pilot, only played on in a handful of movies, as already said he was never in the military, not in the "air Corp in WWII, in a non flying pole like Ronald Reagan or a non pilot role like Clark Gable.

There were plenty of actors in Hollywood of his era and at least as or close to as famous as he was who were pilots, many in the the Military or at lest they had flying roles, Navigators, Bombardiers etc or flew of carriers for the Navy

Jimmy Stewart was a pilot, he flew Bombers in WWII and actually stayed in the Air Force Reserve, eventually rising to the rank of one star General, he Flew Jets and even got checked out for supersonic flight by none other than Chuck Yeager

So lets call it Jimmy Stewart Field
 

thirteenbyseven

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Here at LPSG we have deep-thinking people of color and progressive whites like myself who share many beliefs. But getting excited over Marion Morrison (John Wayne) and his statue in the lobby of SNA is somewhat wasted energy. Orange County politicians won't change the name of the airport.

For me John Wayne was a local Newport Beach guy. When I was under the age I cannot discuss on LPSG, he passed-away of stomach cancer in June of 1979 and shortly afterward the Orange County Board of Supervisors changed the name of the local airport. That's surprising because John Wayne railed long and hard at the noise "those goddamn jets make over my house" at 2686 Bayshore Drive. Back in those days the airline of Orange County-- Air Cal-- flew thunderously noisy JT8 powered Boeing 737-200s. They instituted a noise abatement procedure on departure, cutting back on the EPR (engine pressure ratio) thrust at around a thousand-feet, which may have resulted in the reduction of a decibel or two, but everyone from wealthy Republicans to ancient dowagers complained that aircraft noise interfered with love making at night or scared their pets. And John Wayne, who used to driver over in his 1975 Pontiac station wagon, lead the posse of angry hombres at those contentious board meetings. So it was a head scratcher when the very airport he despised was named after him. About now he must be turning over in his grave off of San Joaquin Hills Rd. in Newport Beach at all the fuss his memory is creating.

John Wayne as Marion Morrison aboard his yacht: John Wayne's wigs, he responded: "It's not phony. It's real hair. Of course, it's not mine, but it's real."
 
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thirteenbyseven

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Too much competitive shuffleboard - happens to aging "stars" working the trailer court tour. Be kind.

It's a shame that John Wayne has left the building, because all that's left are memories and (supposed) first hand accounts of his life. In Newport Beach he is still revered. You'll still find admiring octogenarian women who have a sparkle in their eye as they swear he stood around 6' 8" although he was only my height of 6' 4". In the movies he could kill a half-dozen Indians with a single shot while riding a galloping horse. However, in his later years at least, he was no natural athlete.

John Wayne consented to an ill-advised interview with Playboy magazine, knowing that publisher High Hefner was an unabashed liberal who would send a gotcha journalist armed with "when did you stop beating your wife" style questions. Wayne treated the interview as-if it were his first rodeo.
 

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It's a shame that John Wayne has left the building, because all that's left are memories and (supposed) first hand accounts of his life. In Newport Beach he is still revered. You'll still find admiring octogenarian women who have a sparkle in their eye as they swear he stood around 6' 8" although he was only my height of 6' 4". In the movies he could kill a half-dozen Indians with a single shot while riding a galloping horse. However, in his later years at least, he was no natural athlete.

John Wayne consented to an ill-advised interview with Playboy magazine, knowing that publisher High Hefner was an unabashed liberal who would send a gotcha journalist armed with "when did you stop beating your wife" style questions. Wayne treated the interview as-if it were his first rodeo.

Wayne always spoke his mind, racist and bigoted as it was. In the 50's he worshipped J.Edgar Hoover and supported him with anti-Communist garbage like "Big Jim McClain," as bad a film as Wayne ever made. He never changed - "The Green Berets" was just as bad 15 or so years later. He made some decent movies, a few that are actually great, but he was who he was. The interview was jarring when it came out, but the questions were not unfair - his answers were just bad - a picture of who he really was.
 

thirteenbyseven

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Wayne always spoke his mind, racist and bigoted as it was. In the 50's he worshipped J.Edgar Hoover and supported him with anti-Communist garbage like "Big Jim McClain," as bad a film as Wayne ever made. He never changed - "The Green Berets" was just as bad 15 or so years later. He made some decent movies, a few that are actually great, but he was who he was. The interview was jarring when it came out, but the questions were not unfair - his answers were just bad - a picture of who he really was.

By far John Wayne's signature career movie was The High and the Mighty. When filming began in November 1953 he was just right age with the perfect on-screen persona to pull-off Dan Roman, an over-the-hill airline pilot bumped down to first officer nearing retirement.

There probably isn't an airline pilot alive who didn't enjoy John Wayne's famous bitch-slap of his captain played by Robert Stack: "Get ahold of yourself ya yellow-belly..." Commensurately most in aviation will choke-up slightly at the final scene when he turns to walk (alone) toward the terminal building, whistling the famous movie theme music, after being told by his chief pilot there were only 30-gallons left in the DC-4's fuel tanks. The chief pilot takes one final look at John Wayne disappearing into the night--knowing full well who brought the aircraft down safely-- and says under his breath "So long. So long you ancient pelican."
 
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keenobserver

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By far John Wayne's signature career movie was The High and the Mighty. When filming began in November 1953 he was just right age with the perfect on-screen persona to pull-off Dan Roman, an over-the-hill airline pilot bumped down to first officer nearing retirement.

There probably isn't an airline pilot alive who didn't enjoy John Wayne's famous bitch-slap of his captain played by Robert Stack: "Get ahold of yourself ya yellow-belly..." Commensurately most in aviation will choke-up slightly at the final scene when he turns to walk (alone) toward the terminal building, whistling the famous movie theme music, after being told by his chief pilot there were only 30-gallons left in the DC-4's fuel tanks. The chief pilot takes one final look at John Wayne disappearing into the night--knowing full well who brought the aircraft down safely-- and says under his breath "So long. So long you ancient pelican."

The High and the Mighty was good - average for the time and popular at that time. His better works include "The Searchers," "Red River," (with Montgomery Clift), "Stagecoach", his 'horse soldier trilogy filmed by John Ford, "The Quiet Man," some westerns like "McClintock," Chisum," "Rio Bravo," and "The Sons of Katie Elder." "The Cowboys" and "The Shootist" have gained a following, although nether was popular when they were first released. Wayne embodied the conflict between what our screen actors pretended to be and what they were.
 

Klingsor

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The High and the Mighty was good - average for the time and popular at that time. His better works include "The Searchers," "Red River," (with Montgomery Clift), "Stagecoach", his 'horse soldier trilogy filmed by John Ford, "The Quiet Man," some westerns like "McClintock," Chisum," "Rio Bravo," and "The Sons of Katie Elder." "The Cowboys" and "The Shootist" have gained a following, although nether was popular when they were first released. Wayne embodied the conflict between what our screen actors pretended to be and what they were.

Excellent list, but don't forget True Grit. Wayne's only Oscar.
 

HorseHung40's

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Newsflash modern world: You can choose to forgive these remarks, and, dismiss them as drivel of their day; alternatively, you can boycott the work of these bigots.

A gay friend of mine in Toronto, Canada, who faced homophobia for more than 40 years has chosen the latter, including those members of his immediate family, who once shunned them.

Kudos to him: He made the most of his life, despite roadblocks in his way; however, he has chosen NEITHER to forgive NOR to forget.

Recently, he was contacted by a relative to be informed that that person's brother was dying of cancer, and, wanted to apologize. He interrupted the caller to say that he needed to answer the door, hoping that the persons were Jehovah's Witnesses. He put the receiver down, and, just left it there for the rest of the day, unplugging the telephone jack prior to going to bed.

I say: Good for him!