We all know someone with some antiquated ideas about race. It could be an older relative. It could be an accquaintance. It could be that creepy guy across the street who always yells the N-word at you as you walk by even though you’re Vietnamese. Maybe it’s because they’re old and stuck in their ways. Maybe they’re just an asshole. But that guy has nothing on these five most racist famous people of all time.
Mel Gibson famously has a bit of drinking problem. In fact, some of his most notable racist rants come from a DUI arrest where he declared that “Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world”, a statement Gibson volunteered despite the fact it had absolutely nothing to do with anything being discussed at the time. Also, it’s not true. Most wars, in fact all of them really, were not caused by Jews. The Spanish-American War, for instance, was caused by colonial disputes and yellow journalism. Not Jews. Get your facts straight Mel. Gibson blamed this incident and others on his drinking, which might be an excuse if it weren’t for the fact that he seems to say stuff like this an awful lot. You can click that link for a full run down, because I don’t want to spend this whole post censoring out the N-Word.
Proving that his under-medicated Hulkamania has progressed to attacking his brain, Hogan was caught on tape making some racially insensitive remarks regarding his daughter’s relationship with an African-American gentleman who, to the Hulker’s disappointment, does not play basketball. Caught on tape in the aftermath of what was undoubtedly some pretty leathery coitus with the wife of a friend, Hogan discussed his distaste at his daughter’s decisions. ““I mean, I’d rather if she was going to f–k some n—-r, I’d rather have her marry an 8-foot-tall n—-r worth a hundred million dollars! Like a basketball player! I guess we’re all a little racist. F–king n—-r.” He then continued “My daughter Brooke jumped sides on me. I spent $2-3 million on her music career, I’ve done everything like a jackass for her.”
So we learned some interesting stuff from this episode. One, Hulk Hogan thinks everyone is as racist as he is, despite having no evidence for that assertion. Two, he has way more faith in Brooke Hogan’s talents as a singer than any reasonable person should. Hogan was fired from the WWE afterwards and issued a half-assed apology, at which point the world went back to ignoring him and his family of orange giants.
Paula Deen always seemed kind of like the sweet old Southern lady that reminds us of our grandmother. It’s why her show was so popular as she encouraged America to stuff themselves with butter and fried pickles. Unfortunately, she also reminded us of our sweet old Southern grandmothers when she made some really offensive, patronizing comments about black people. She basically was outed as having planned a wedding for her brother where she and the guests got to play ante-bellum plantation owner. Throw in a liberal sprinkling of racial epiteths and it’s obvious Paula’s pretty far behind the times. On one level I have a bit of sympathy for her. It seems like what she said was motivated less by racial animosity and more by some ridiculous, antiquated ignorance. I mean, she was born in 1947 in Georgia. It makes sense that she’d have been raised with some unsavory beliefs on race relations. On the other hand she wanted to have a party that celebrated slavery, so she and her diabetes can go fuck themselves.
Ty Cobb was a baseball player. A really good one. He set some records back in the early years of the 20th century that stood for almost a hundred years. He was also a colossal racist. Even by the standards of 1900’s Atlanta he was racist. He was so racist that people from that era, who today would be considered seriously racist, heard about the stuff he did and said, “Hey Ty, dial it down a bit.” Ty was an aggressive player, filing his metal cleats into sharp points and diving feet first into second basemen. He translated this aggressiveness into one of the most impressive records in baseball and a trail of violent incidents against African-Americans. He once slapped an elevator operator for being “uppity” and ended up attacking a night watchman who intervened with a knife. Both of the men were black in case you’re wondering. Of course that’s not as bad as the time he beat up a guy with no arms.
John Wayne was famous for playing All-American tough guys and war heroes on the big screen. This didn’t really extend to real life, where the actor actually decided to pass when he had the opportunity to fight in World War II. Wayne also didn’t take any particular advantage of opportunities to stand up for racial justice when he had the opportunity either. Wayne famously did an interview with Playboy where he stated that he believed in white supremacy until “blacks were educated up to a certain point”. In addition he said that he wouldn’t make any special effort to encourage diversity on the set of a film after he had hired “the correct number of blacks”. Unfortunately Wayne’s reputation as a hero on screen didn’t really extend to real life.