USC Removes Exhibit on John Wayne

July 13, 2020

The University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts will remove an exhibit that honors John Wayne after students demanded that it come down because of the late actor's racist statements, the Los Angeles Times reported. “Conversations about systemic racism in our cultural institutions along with the recent global, civil uprising by the Black Lives Matter Movement require that we consider the role our school can play as a change maker in promoting anti-racist cultural values and experiences,” the school said in a statement. “Therefore, it has been decided that the Wayne Exhibit will be removed.”

In a 1971 interview with Playboy, Wayne said, “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 said that while he didn't condone slavery, “I don’t feel guilty about the fact that five or 10 generations ago these people were slaves.”

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