This State’s “John Wayne Day” Has Been Struck Down By Political Correctness
Revisionist history is a dangerous thing and can lead to viewing past events and historical figures from the wrong end of a telescope, judging them from the comfortable present instead of their own times.
The movie-buff who refuses to see the classic Gone With the Wind because of racial stereotypes forgets it was made at a time when “separate but equal” was the accepted law from the Supreme Court, and that Hattie McDaniel was the first African-American actress to win an Academy Award for her performance.
Recent reassessment has tarnished the once honorable Founding Fathers George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, as well as Harry Truman, who made the decision to use the atomic bomb in 1945, and now the latest victim to this political-correctness gone mad is none other than John Wayne, whose no-nonsense honesty was once so highly valued as the embodiment of all-American ideals.
When California State Assemblyman Matthew Harper, a Republican from conservative Orange County, proposed the designation of the actor's birthday, May 26, 2016, as John Wayne Day, instead of passing with ease, as most such resolutions do, it was met with a firestorm of intense opposition led by Democrats Luis Alejo and Lorena Gonzalez.
The debate centered around comments made by “The Duke” in 1971, the year the United States Supreme Court upheld the use of busing to achieve racial desegregation in schools, and at a time when affirmative action orders created forced quotas in employment and school admissions.
Wayne told Playboy Magazine, “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 responsibility.”
This week, 45 years later, when America has a twice-elected African-American president and saw the candidacy of black neurosurgeon Ben Carson, John Wayne was labeled a racist.
The resolution to mark John Wayne Day in California fell 35-20.