A 1974 interview with the late John Wayne, in which the legendary actor gives straightforward answers that many on today’s left would consider politically incorrect, and could be in danger of being censored, a conservative news and commentary outlet warns.
The Conservative Tribune urged its readers to view the clip, titled “John Wayne Takes Apart The Idea Of Liberals, Feminists, White Guilt, And Black Lives Matter,” on YouTube before “the powers that be decide to toss it down the memory hole.”
The warning comes on the heels of reports that big tech companies may be censoring conservative voices.
In January, Project Veritas reported that Twitter was “shadow banning” conservative profiles, referring to the practice of restricting users’ reach on the platform in ways that stop short of an outright ban. Alleged practices include manipulating protocols so that selected profiles do not show up in search results or elsewhere on the Twitter platform.
“Although Twitter presents itself as politically neutral, its culture behind closed doors is one of blatant censorship, systematic bias, and political targeting,” said Project Veritas President James O’Keefe.
Public opinion appears to echo these claims. A study released by the Pew Research Center in late June found that “seven-in-ten Americans think it likely that social media companies intentionally censor political viewpoints that those companies find objectionable.”
In an article titled “Watch This Lost 1974 John Wayne Interview Before YouTube Censors It,” editors at the Conservative Tribune suggested that the trend to silence conservative voices may soon encompass such material as the interview with “the Duke,” published two years ago on the YouTube channel The Common Sense Conservative.
The clip has been viewed over 1.2 million times. In it, a foreign journalist interviews Wayne five years before his death and asked about several sensitive topics, including women’s liberation, civil rights, and race relations.
The outlet points out that while some might consider Wayne’s responses objectionable on grounds of political correctness, there is “an element of common-sense conservatism behind most of what he said.”
The narrator in the video introduces John Wayne, whose real name was Marion Mitchell Morrison, by saying that “his patriotism has never wavered, but today he’s a little disillusioned with modern America.”
“We are being represented by men who are kowtowing to minorities so they can get votes,” Wayne says in the interview. “And I think it’s bad for our country, and I’m sad to see minorities make so much of themselves as a hyphenated American now.
“I wish they’d all get to thinking that they’re Americans, as they should, and as they’ve luckily been born here and couldn’t be better off in any other place—there shouldn’t be so much whining and bellyaching.”
The Conservative Tribune says Wayne’s response would be highly relevant today, given the explosion of identity politics.
The interviewer then asks “in the 1960s and 70s there was a period of considerable change—civil rights for blacks, equal rights for women—has this made America a better place?”
“I think opening doors and tipping your hat to ladies is probably a thing of the past today. The forerunners of the women’s liberation of today have taken that feeling away from the average American man,” Wayne responded.
Responding to a question about the extension of certain rights minorities hadn’t always enjoyed in the United States, Wayne said, “I guess that they’ve had a pretty tough break, but not quite as bad as you and your do-gooder friends would have them believe. They live as well here as they live in any other country over that 199 years [prior to receiving equal rights].”
“I think they do have a right to more rights, but it isn’t a thing where the rest of the country should feel terribly guilty about anything because they’ve had a better life here, and their fathers and mothers, than they would’ve had anyplace else.”
While the Conservative Tribune acknowledges the highly contentious nature of Wayne’s suggestion that minorities were better off in America than anywhere else, even during the period of slavery, the outlet defends his words, saying that “with all things considered, most other developed nations at the time had similar issues, while life in the undeveloped world was arguably worse.”
“And I want to see them have everything,” Wayne said. “I want—I don’t squawk and crybaby and say, ‘Gee, I had to go without meals when I was 16 and 17 years old, it’s a terrible thing.’ I don’t think you should look back and whine and bellyache or try to hold somebody else guilty for everything you did.”
The Conservative Tribune argues that “considering the current delicate sensibilities of liberals today” had John Wayne expressed the same ideas in the same way in the present day, he would have faced a torrent of harsh criticism.
Yet given “the Duke’s” patriotism and devotion to traditional values, the outlet argues that his message would have stayed the same, though he might have picked his words more carefully.