Saturday, August 24, 2013

Saturday B.S. Roundup

It's always hard to decide which examples of b.s. to address in these weekly posts. So many choices! But since David and I are going to see "The Butler" tonight I thought I'd take on the "Hanoi Jane" stories which are making the rounds again since she's one of the actors in the movie (playing Nancy Reagan which certainly ruffles some conservative feathers).

Jane Fonda did protest the Vietnam War and did visit Hanoi. She denounced U.S. involvement in the war. She met with a group of seven POWs and she was, in fact, photographed sitting on a Vietnamese anti-aircraft gun. Those facts alone may be sufficient for some to disapprove of her and that's fine. However, much embellishment and many outright falsehoods have been added to the story and repeated until many are convinced of their truth.

POWs did not furtively slip messages to Jane Fonda only to have her betray them by turning them over to their captors. A POW didn't spit on her and receive a brutal beating. You can read more details here:

Snopes: Hanoi'd with Jane
FactCheck: Blame Jane Falsehoods - Urban Legends: "Hanoi Jane" Rumors Blend Fact and Fiction

I recently stumbled upon Jane Fonda's personal blog, including a post she wrote about her trip to Hanoi. It's somewhat lengthy but I found it worth the read, as well as the comments and her responses to them. Obviously this is her own personal recollection of events which happened many years ago and may well be biased in her favor but I found it compelling. She has publicly apologized for certain actions on her part and reiterates:
There is one thing that happened while in North Vietnam that I will regret to my dying day— I allowed myself to be photographed on a Vietnamese anti-aircraft gun.
She then goes on to explain how that came about, as well as her motivation for making the trip in the first place. As I said, many will still find what she did (the actual facts, not the b.s.) abhorrent and I can respect that. But there's no need to make up things which did not happen. Let the facts stand on their own.

After seeing all the outrage over her role in "The Butler" and reading that a Kentucky movie theater owner won't show it (or any movie Jane Fonda is in) in his theater I wondered if it would be shown here in our small, conservative town. I figured I'd have to see it in Oklahoma City but to my surprise, it's playing here. Several friends have seen it and highly recommend it. I've been warned to take tissues. I hope it lives up to my expectations and now I'd better start getting ready.

Have a great rest-of-the-weekend and remember, go forth and share the truth!

~GTS: Google That Shit~

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