ORANGE COUNTY, California – Two Democrats from California, Orange County, who called for the John Wayne Airport to be renamed are expressed after the late son of American icons, Ethan Wayne, came to his defense on Monday.
Fred Smoller and Dr. Michael Moodian are two of three politicians in Orange County, California, whose names appear on the resolution calling for John Waynes’ name and likenesses to be removed from the airport during his speeches. racists and sectarians passed decades ago. In a statement to Fox News, they are now calling the actor’s son for proclaiming thatJohn Waynewas not racist.
It is commendable but not surprising that Ethan Wayne comes to the defense of his famous father. However, there is nothing in the historical record to support Ethans’ contention that if John Wayne were here today, he would be at the forefront of demanding fairness and justice for all, and that he would have removed these officers from George Floyd, because It was the right thing to do. He would defend the right of all to protest and to work for change.
Smoller and Moodian are the authors of the editorial that launched the campaign to rename John Wayne Airport. They exposed Ethan Wayne’s statement to Fox News on Monday, in which he stated thatthe end of the actors 1971 interview with Playboydid not convey his true feelings.
In the interview at the time, John Wayne is quoted as saying, I believe in white supremacy until blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I do not believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people. He also said that he felt no remorse for the subjugation of Native Americans and called films such as Easy Rider and Midnight Cowboy perverted.
When John Wayne had the privilege of a public forum and a megaphone, he clearly expressed his conviction that the others were inferior and did not deserve an equal place in society. He was dismissive of historical atrocities. He ridiculed the advocacy for equity and equality, the two men said in their joint statement to Fox News.
The California Democrat pair argued that Wayne had no kind words for the 1960s society movements in which blacks, women, LGBTQ + community members, and Native Americans fought for fairness and justice for all.
They also claimed that if John Wayne was alive today, he probably would not have decried the death of George Floyds.
He lived at a time that he could have chosen to do or just say the right thing. He did not do it. His oppressive words and opinions were just as wrong at the time as they are today. If he was with us today, we think it is much more likely that he would have come to the defense of Donald Trump rather than George Floyd.
The comments from Smoller and the Moodians come after Ethan Wayne showed up to beat his late father. In a statement to Fox News on Monday, Ethan said, “Let me be clear – John Wayne was not a racist. I know this term is casually launched these days, but I take it very seriously. I also understand how we got there.
“There is no doubt that the words spoken by John Wayne in an interview 50 years ago caused pain and anger,” continued Ethan, referring to the 1971 interview with Playboy actors. “They also hurt him because he realized that his true feelings were poorly expressed.”
Ethan, who is Wayne’s youngest son and president of John Wayne Enterprises, continued in his statement on Monday: “The truth is, as we have seen in the newspapers of his records, he has in no way case supported “white supremacy”. and believed that those responsible should gain power without resorting to violence.
“Those who knew him, knew that he judged everyone as an individual and believed that everyone deserved an equal chance,” added Ethan. “He called for fanaticism when he saw it. He has hired and worked with people of all races, beliefs and sexual orientations. John Wayne represented the best for all of us – a society that does not discriminate against anyone seeking the American dream. “
Ethan said that “it would be an injustice to judge him on the basis of a single interview, as opposed to the complete picture of who he was.”
“The current orientation towards social justice is absolutely valid and necessary. But attempts by some to use them for political gain hijack real opportunities for reform, ”he said.
The 58-year-old also explained what his father would have done if he was still alive today.
“One thing we know if John Wayne was here today, he would be at the forefront demanding fairness and justice for all,” said Ethan. “He would have removed these officers from George Floyd because it was the right thing to do. He would defend the right of everyone to protest and work for change.”
Wayne died at the age of 72 from cancer in 1979.
“Since his death over 40 years ago, his legacy continues through the John Wayne Cancer Foundation, which has helped give courage, strength and courage to the fight against cancer, and through its extensive library of movies. My father believed that we can learn from yesterday, but not by erasing the past. His name, wherever he is, will always embody these values, and our family knows that the positive impact it has made on the world will never be diminished, ”concluded Ethan in his statement.
The push to oust Wayne, who was a longtime resident of the airport’s name, has a long history. The airport, which is at the heart of Orange County, dates back decades and county officials voted to change the name to remember Wayne when he died. .
Airport spokesperson Deanne Thompson previously said that the county had no plans to change the name or remove a statue of Wayne from the airport, believing the problem would recur periodically, including the ‘last year.
However, the current push comes as thousands of Americans took to the streets to protest police brutality against blacks and systemic racismThe death of George Floyd.
In many places, communities have moved to knock down or knock down statues of former slave traders and remove the Confederate emblem from the images, including the Mississippi state flag, as well as rename buildings and institutions named after people deemed to have had racist opinions or committed racist acts.
Adam Shaw, Fox News, Mariah Haas and Stephanie Nolasco, as well as the Associated Press, contributed to this report.
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