Charlton Heston has died at the age of 84.
There are few actors DIH admired more. Moses. Ben-Hur. "Take your stinking paws off of me, you damned dirty apes." And who could forget his hilarious hosting of Saturday Night Live, where he did the "vengeful God" thing to perfection?
And talk about having the courage of one's convictions. This is a guy who marched with Martin Luther King in '63, then resigned from Actors Equity twenty years later because they wouldn't allow a white actor to play a Eurasian lounge lizard in "Miss Saigon." Racism is racism. Heston knew it when he saw it, and he acted on his beliefs.
If you're looking for a supporter of fashionable causes you canlook somewhere else. Heston was president of the NRA. He spent years raising awareness of our Second Ammedment rights, giving speeches, shaking hands and making an obvious liar out of the likes of Michael Moore.
Still looking for fashionable causes? Check this out:
"In an address to students at Harvard Law School entitled Winning the Cultural War, Heston expressed his disdain for political correctness, stating "If Americans believed in political correctness, we'd still be King George's boys - subjects bound to the British crown." He stated "Political correctness is tyranny with manners". He went on to say that white pride is just as valid as black pride or red pride or anyone else's pride.
"Heston opposed abortion and gave the introduction to a 1987 pro-life documentary by Bernard Nathanson called Eclipse of Reason which focuses on late-term abortions. Heston served on the Advisory Board of Accuracy in Media (AIM), a conservative media watchdog group founded by the late Reed Irvine." [h/t Wikipeida]
Take that, fashion queens.
Charlton Heston was right up there with Ronald Reagan and William F. Buckley. If it werent' for people like them we would have kissed what's left of our freedoms goodbye decades ago.
On Friday a memorial service for William F. Buckley, Jr. was held in St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York. DIH's spouse was there, along with some 2,000 other of WFB's friends and admirers. Heston, as anyonewith even a nodding acquaintance of conservatism in America knows, was one of those friends. He was a generous supporter of National Review and an outspoken friend of the magazine when it had few, especially in Hollywood.
It was through NR that DIH met Heston, at a black-tie party in New York years ago. Back then DIH was not a mommy and so could still sit up watching the late-night talk shows. Heston had just appeared on one. He was charming and hilarious, talking about his early days as an artists' model when he and his wife were struggling to make it in showbiz. It was a great job, he said. Except it could be a little chilly sometimes, since he posed in the nude, with a little fig-leaf kind of thing strategically placed. But it kept food on the table, and he had no complaints.
So DIH, in her 20s and ga-ga at the thought of meeting Ben Hur, is standing on this receiving line, waiting her turn to shake hands, and all she can think about is loincloths. And Ben Hur. Naked Ben Hur. You can imagine the excitement/awkwardness/"damn- why -didn't- I- bring- my- camera" of it all.
So finally it's my turn and Heston says, "Hello, Sue, great to meet you"and DIH blurts out "Oh Mr.Heston ,was it true what you said on TV the other night about the modelling job?"
For a second Heston looked puzzled, Then he puffed out his chest, held his head high and raised himself to his full, glorious height. He smiled. "You bet it was, sweetheart!"
It was a happy evening.
I like to think Chuck and Bill are wonderful times in heaven, together, right now.