Monday, July 13, 2020

The Legacy of John Wayne

Adjusting the legacy of John Wayne is probably overdue. I don't think we can remove him completely from the history of film, but I do think we need to take steps to put him and his controversial views in their proper context:
"Conversations about systemic racism in our cultural institutions along with the recent global, civil uprising by the Black Lives Matter Movement require that we consider the role our School can play as a change maker in promoting antiracist cultural values and experiences," Assistant Dean of Diversity and Inclusion Evan Hughes said in a Friday announcement to the film school community.

"Therefore, it has been decided that the Wayne Exhibit will be removed."

The exhibit will instead be moved to the Cinematic Arts Library, Hughes wrote, where it can be placed "within the proper archival and research context" for continued education on Wayne's role in film history.
While the statement did not directly address the controversy surrounding Wayne, his legacy has recently been re-examined, especially after a 1971 interview with Playboy resurfaced and went viral last year. In it, Wayne espoused derogatory views of African Americans, Native Americans and films with gay characters.
"I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility," the actor said. "I don't believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people."
You could add his comments and his views to the exhibit as a way to put Wayne in the proper historical context as it relates to his place in American history. I think you have to include the fact that this was common to the entertainment industry. To me, that would help explain that he wasn't the only person who had these horrible views and opinions. There is ample evidence that he was no different than Ronald Reagan in terms of how he viewed minorities.

And while Wayne and Reagan had vastly different careers, they were part of a generation that had an enormous impact on the cultural history of the country. Providing context is probably the most helpful way of explaining who Wayne was and why it's important that we understand his contributions.

I don't have a problem changing the name of the airport, either. We could rename that and we could definitely rename Reagan National Airport in Washington D.C.

Monday, July 6, 2020

No Sympathy For Horrible People

The first question I have is, "what took you so long to tell us what we already know?
A tell-all book by President Trump's niece Mary, a licensed clinical psychologist, will now be published next week, two weeks earlier than expected, the publisher Simon & Schuster said Monday.
The book portrays the president as a "damaged man" with "lethal flaws" who "threatens the world's health, economic security, and social fabric."
Mary Trump remains entangled in a legal battle over whether she has violated a confidential settlement agreement. But the court case will not affect the release of the book.
"Due to high demand and extraordinary interest in this book, 'Too Much and Never Enough' by Mary L. Trump will now be published on July 14, 2020," Simon & Schuster said Monday.
If anyone had damaging, incriminating evidence against Trump and failed to release it when it might have helped save American democracy, I don't know why they held onto it and I don't know why we shouldn't question their motives.

This is why I don't lionize people like Michael Cohen and James Mattis and all the rest. They were well positioned in life to do the right thing and they failed to do it. Mary Trump knew everything about her famous uncle and I just don't remember her writing any books or speaking out in 2015 and 2016 when it might have done some good. And if Mark Burnett really is sitting on tapes of Trump using the "n-word" and worse, then his failure to release them is unethical and disgusting.

I don't care what Mary Trump has to say. It plays into the victimization game that Trump and his surrogates play so well because the media doesn't understand what is really happening to our democratic institutions. This is another distraction from the lawlessness and the savaging of the Federal Government.

Everything that Trump has done out in the open and with the approval and endorsement of the Republican Party is already enough to conclude that he is not fit for office and should be removed immediately. Anything that detracts from that is an opportunity to change the subject.

Honestly, if you couldn't see this coming when Trump came down the escalator, I don't know what to do for you.

And this is a separate thing entirely from Trump's victims. I completely understand why they did not come forward. No one wants to see their life ripped apart. The women who have accused Trump of rape and sexual assault are not to be condemned for wishing to hide from the vicious wrath of his supporters. That's not what this argument is about. Women who choose when and where to report their victimization should be given a pass because of the inequality of our legal system.

No, if you knew Trump was a criminal and a thug and said horrible things in public or private and if you sat on that, hoping to cash in, you do not deserve to be considered a hero.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Ed Henry Has Been Fired

Ed Henry was considered a "rising star" at Fox News which translates, loosely, into "a human being with hair who does not drool all over himself when lying to the audience." He has now been fired for sexual misconduct:

Fox News said Wednesday that Ed Henry, one of its top news anchors, has been fired after an investigation into an allegation was leveled by a former employee.

"On Thursday, June 25, we received a complaint about Ed Henry from a former employee's attorney involving willful sexual misconduct in the workplace years ago," Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott and president Jay Wallace wrote in an internal memo.

The executives said that an outside law firm was immediately brought in to investigate the claims.
"‪Ed was suspended the same day and removed from his on-air responsibilities pending investigation," they said. "Based on investigative findings, Ed has been terminated."‬

Until last week, Henry was a rising star at Fox, responsible for co-anchoring three hours of morning news coverage on the network.
Henry did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Fox News is probably budgeting thirty or forty million dollars in sexual harassment payouts per year right now, so this is proactive and defensive in nature.

How bad of a human being do you have to be to get fired by Fox News AFTER they cleaned house and fired a bunch of creeps in the aftermath of the whole Roger Ailes debacle? Henry had to have done something not just shocking but deviant in nature as well. Holy crap.

And yes, it is news when someone gets fired after working at an organization that was forced to pay out an untold amount of serious money because it tolerated a culture of rampant sexual misconduct. You would think that Henry would have dialed it back a bit but, no. Once an abuser, always an abuser.

The good news for Henry is that he can now join the Trump regime or its campaign and continue to do God's work on behalf of the conservative movement.