It only makes sense that former reality TV star and current GOP Presidential frontrunner Donald Trump would look to associate himself with a person who became famous for portraying himself as a tough guy on screen while dodging the draft in World War II. Even better that that same actor espoused white supremacist views and complained openly about diversity.
On Tuesday, Trump appeared at the John Wayne Museum in Winterset, Iowa, to stand in front of a statue of The Duke and accept Wayne’s daughter’s endorsement for his White House campaign. After Aissa Wayne offered her family’s support to The Donald on behalf of her deceased father, Trump said the following:
“This is very important to me because of John and his whole legacy. I met him one time and it made such an impression. When you talk about bigger than life, there aren’t too many people bigger than life… It’s an honor to be here, it’s a tremendous honor to have your support and endorsement.
When you think about it John Wayne represented strength, he represented power, he represented what the people are looking [for] today because we have exactly the opposite of John Wayne right now in this country. And he represented real strength and an inner strength that you don’t see very often, and that’s why this endorsement it meant so much to me.”
Yep, John Wayne represented strength and power, which is why he avoided serving in the military after Pearl Harbor despite being only 34 at the time. While he was playing tough-as-nails cowboys and hard-nosed soldiers, he made sure he didn’t go overseas to fight for his nation so he could continue to carry on an extramarital affair with German actress Marlene Dietrich.
As far as what people are looking for today in our country, I guess you can say Wayne would have tapped into the same level of white resentment that Trumpy has. In a 1971 interview with Playboy, the Hollywood star pointed out he was a white supremacist.
“With a lot of blacks, there’s quite a bit of resentment along with their dissent, and possibly rightfully so. But 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. I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people.”
He also noted that he was against diversity in Hollywood. He said that he made sure to use black actors when they were necessary for slave roles, but that he didn’t think they should necessarily be represented all that much in films because there weren’t enough trained black actors to do so.
“I’ve directed two pictures and I gave the blacks their proper position. I had a black slave in The Alamo, and I had a correct number of blacks in The Green Berets. If it’s supposed to be a black character, naturally I use a black actor. But I don’t go so far as hunting for positions for them. I think the Hollywood studios are carrying their tokenism a little too far. There’s no doubt that 10 percent of the population is black, or colored, or whatever they want to call themselves; they certainly aren’t Caucasian. Anyway, I suppose there should be the same percentage of the colored race in films as in society. But it can’t always be that way. There isn’t necessarily going to be 10 percent of the grips or sound men who are black, because more than likely, 10 percent haven’t trained themselves for that type of work.”
Wayne further embraced his white supremacist ideals in the interview by calling the Native Americans selfish for not wanting to share their land with white Europeans and that it was good that they were mostly killed off.
“I don’t feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from them, if that’s what you’re asking. Our so-called stealing of this country from them was just a matter of survival. There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves.”
Hell, if you read the entire piece — highly recommended — it comes across as a gotdamn Donald Trump stump speech! No wonder The Donald loves him and his “legacy.” He obviously appreciates faux toughness and unrestrained racism when he sees it.