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California Democrats are looking to change the name of John Wayne airport in Orange County over bigoted remarks the actor made during a 1971 interview with Playboy magazine.
In the piece — which has stirred controversy in the past — Wayne said he believed in white supremacy adding “I don’t feel guilty about the fact that five or 10 generations ago these people were slaves.”
“There have been numerous calls to remove John Wayne’s namesake from Orange County’s airport because of Wayne’s white supremacist, anti-LGBT, and anti-Indigenous views,” the Democratic Party of Orange County said in a resolution passed Friday.
“The Democratic Party of Orange County condemns John Wayne’s racist and bigoted statements, and calls for John Wayne’s name and likeness to be removed from the Orange County airport.”
The resolution called for the facility to revert to its prior incarnation as the Orange County Airport. The news was first reported in the Los Angeles Times.
“There have been past efforts to get this done and now we’re putting our name and our backing into this to make sure there is a name change,” Ada Briceño, chair of the Democratic Party of Orange County, told the paper.
Wayne, an iconic 20th century actor, died in 1979 and the airport was renamed in his honor that same year. A statue of Wayne was also erected on site in 1982.
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