Clint Eastwood applauds Donald Trump’s contempt for political correctness
In an extensive cover story for long-running lifestyle men’s magazine Esquire, iconic, then-86-year-old American actor Clint Eastwood unleashed a stunning indictment on political correctness and professed his admiration for Republican President Donald Trump.
Eastwood is no stranger to political controversy, having served two years as mayor of Carmel, California, in the late 1980s and regaling delegates 25 years later at the 2012 GOP National Convention with a widely derided, adlibbed speech admonishing an empty chair supposedly containing President Barack Obama.
Asked if he had officially endorsed Trump or Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton, Eastwood treaded carefully, stating that he had not, nor had he spoken personally with either candidate. But the weathered cowboy basically admitted his vote was in Trump’s corner when journalist Michael Hainey pressed him on the issue: Who would he vote for if given the choice of Clinton or the former host of NBC’s The Apprentice?
“That’s a tough one, isn’t it?” admitted the conservative leaning actor. “I’d have to go for Trump…’cause Hillary’s declared that she’s gonna follow in Obama’s footsteps. There’s been just too much funny business on both sides of the aisle. She’s made a lot of dough out of being a politician. I gave up dough to be a politician.”
Eastwood reserved his true venom for the hot button topic of political correctness, ultimately igniting a social media firestorm on Twitter when he defended Trump’s brash demeanor. “He is onto something, because secretly everybody’s getting tired of political correctness, kissing up,” said the Dirty Harry titular antihero.
“That’s the kiss-ass generation we’re in right now. We’re really in a p — sy generation. Everybody’s walking on eggshells. We see people accusing people of being racist and all kinds of stuff. When I grew up, those things weren’t called racist.”
Does he consider Trump to be a closeted racist? “He is just saying what’s on his mind,” countered the lanky octogenarian. “And sometimes it’s not so good…I can understand where Trump’s coming from, but I don’t always agree with it.”
The infrequent interview was conducted while the Hang ’Em High protagonist was hunkered down inside his Malpaso Productions office on the Warner Bros. lot editing final touches on reigning box office champion Sully, his 35th film as director which explores the fateful afternoon when Captain Sully Sullenberger [Tom Hanks] miraculously landed US Airways Flight 1549 in New York City’s Hudson River after repeated contact with large bird flocks disabled twin jet engines. Joining the sole surviving Rawhide alum for the first time on record was Scott Eastwood, a dead ringer for his steely-eyed father who costarred in the DC Comics tentpole Suicide Squad in a cast spearheaded by Will Smith.
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Further Reading: Head ’em up! Move ’em out! As trail boss Gil Favor on the long-running 1959–1966 Western Rawhide — the CBS Western series that incidentally made costar Clint Eastwood a household name — Eric Fleming engendered a three-dimensional portrait of a harsh as nails protagonist capable of genuine empathy for his motley crew of trail drovers. A little over a year after controversially departing Rawhide, Fleming was in the remote jungles of Peru filming an ABC TV movie entitled High Jungle when he perished at age 41 in a horrific canoe drowning accident. To read a harrowing first-hand account detailing Fleming’s final hours from High Jungle costar Nico Minardos, head on over to “Now or Never: Remembering ‘Rawhide’ star Eric Fleming.”
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