Was John Wayne racist? Why the late actor’s statue and name could be taken from a California airport in racism row.




An emergency resolution has been passed to oust Wayne’s name within ‘a national movement to eliminate white supremacist symbols.’

Democratic Party politicians are calling to drop John Wayne’s name, statue, and other likenesses from Orange County’s airport in California, over racist and bigoted comments produced by the late actor.

An emergency resolution has been passed by local officials condemning the comments produced by Wayne in a 1971 interview, asking the Orange County Board “to revive its original name: Orange County Airport&rdquo.

Ada Briceno, chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Orange County, said: “There has been past efforts to obtain this done and now we’re putting our name and our backing into this to make sure there is a title change.”

The motivation to oust the tributes to longtime Orange County residents, who died in 1979, is part of “a national movement to eliminate white supremacist symbols and names (that are) reshaping American institutions, monuments, businesses, nonprofits, sports leagues, and teams,” the officials said.

Orange County Democrats are calling for the name of the airport to be changed due to the deceased actor’s history of ‘racist and bigoted statements’ (Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images)

The actor said he believed ‘in white supremacy.’

The actor has been condemned for remarks manufactured in a 1971 interview when he said he believed in white supremacy.

In the Playboy interview, the actor, who starred in numerous Westerns, also used a homophobic slur and said he felt no remorse for the subjugation of Native Americans.

He said: “I don’t feel we did wrong in taking this great country far from them… Our so-called stealing of this country from their store was only a matter of survival.

“There were great amounts of individuals who needed new land,” he said, claiming Native Americans have been “selfishly trying to keep it for themselves&rdquo.

He then said: “I believe in white supremacy” before claiming that African Americans should be “educated to a spot of responsibility”

“I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people,” he added.

Wayne also said that although he did not condone slavery, he did not “feel guilty about the truth that five or ten generations ago these individuals were slaves&rdquo.

In addition, he called movies such as Easy Rider and Midnight Cowboy perverted and used a homophobic slur to reference the two main characters in the latter film.

A statue of John Wayne on display beneath an American flag in John Wayne Airport, in Orange County in Santa Ana, California (Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Go on to remove statues.

After the death of African American George Floyd at the hands of a bright police officer in Minneapolis, anti-racist protests have swept the world.

There’s been increasing demand for statues of historical figures who endorsed or profited from slavery and others who have expressed offensive and prejudiced views to be removed.

Earlier this month in the US, a three-meter tall (10ft) bronze statue of the Italian explorer Christopher Columbus was torn down, set alight, and thrown into a river in Saint Paul, Richmond, Minnesota.

Statues of Columbus in Massachusetts and Miami, Florida were also vandalized – and in Boston, a statue of the explorer who stands on a plinth in the center of town was beheaded.

In the UK, 17th-century slave trader Edward Colston was toppled in Bristol throughout a Black Lives Matter demonstration.

Regarding Wayne, Orange County Supervisor Don Wagner said he’d just heard about the Democratic resolution and was unaware of its wording or merit.

However, President Donald Trump clarified his opposition to the proposal in a tweet referencing removing former President Woodrow Wilson’s name from the university policy center.

The President tweeted: “Can anyone believe that Princeton just dropped the name of Woodrow Wilson from their highly respected policy center.

“Now the Do Nothing Democrats desire to take off the name John Wayne from an airport. Incredible stupidity!”

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