Mark Wahlberg as anti-prejudice hero is Hollywood hypocrisy

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Since George Clooney as Batman, Colin Farrell as Alexander the Great or Sofia Coppola as Mary Corleone, there has been no greater mistake than Mark Wahlberg as a human rights evangelizer. homosexuals.

This is a guy who has committed several heinous crimes, who chased little black children in the streets shouting “n —– s” more than once, who violently assaulted two Vietnamese men, who broke his jaw so badly. from another man he had to be wired shut.

He’s also a guy who in my opinion never really acknowledged or apologized for his sadistic and racist crimes.

So to see the trailer for Wahlberg’s latest movie the other night is jaw-dropping. It’s Hollywood virtue that signals in its most cynical and subconscious form, presented as – of course, what else? – The Oscar bait.

Here is Wahlberg as the main character Joe Bell, a rogue Republican who only addresses his teenage son’s homosexuality after the bullied boy takes his own life. Bell, as portrayed here, is a misguided man who learns, suffers, and whose story and struggles are clearly more important and compelling than, say, the heinous torture of his son.

Alas, this is the case when writing for a star.

What – you think Marky Mark is taking a back seat to the story of a kid weak enough to get beaten up, fresh meat for bullies?

Oh wait, okay …

And so we see Wahlberg, in a trucker cap and in tears like Joe Bell, dragging his way from Oregon to New York, pushing his only cart like an old tramp along the two lanes and fields of wheat, s’ stopping uninvited to lecture the little ones … town Americans (that’s all you have to pay to spread that hypocritical guts) about the dangers – no, moral injustice! – prejudices.

And it’s based on a true story!

Mark Wahlberg and Reid Miller in "Joe Bell."
In 1986, 15-year-old Mark Wahlberg and three friends allegedly chased and harassed three black children.
© Roadside attractions / Courtesy Everett Collection

Could there be a greater desecration of this child’s memory? Does anyone really think that a thug who assaulted and terrorized black schoolchildren and immigrants is a champion of LGBTQ + rights?

Be real. Obviously, Hollywood hasn’t learned anything from #MeToo and Time’s Up.

Why does the celebrity industrial complex have such a blind spot when it comes to Mark Wahlberg?

Summary of Wahlberg’s indictments in his hometown of Boston: In 1986, Wahlberg, then 15, was biking with three friends on a late Sunday afternoon when they met 12-year-old Jesse Coleman walking with his older brother and sister.

The children minded their own business. But they were black.

A member of Wahlberg’s crew – it’s unclear who – reportedly said, “We don’t like black people in the area, so stay away from fk.” They set off in pursuit, some on mopeds, throwing stones at the children, shouting: “Kill the n-r!” Kill the n —- r! “

Can you imagine the terror felt by these children?

The Colemans ran away, but Wahlberg and his gang showed up again the next day, while Jesse was with his fourth-year classmates and a white schoolteacher on a field trip to the same area.

There is no evidence that Coleman and Wahlberg knew each other. These two consecutive attacks seem completely unprovoked and random.

Once again, Wahlberg and his team allegedly chased the entire group, throwing stones all the way through and hitting two little girls. Their teacher motioned for a passing ambulance, which chased Wahlberg and his cohort, all of whom were arrested and charged with a violation of federal civil rights.

This matter has been settled.

Two years later, around 9 p.m. on April 8, 1988, a Vietnamese man named Thanh Lam was carrying two cases of beer from his car when, out of nowhere and again at random, Mark Wahlberg attacked him.

“Wahlberg carried a large wooden staff, about five feet long and two to three inches in diameter,” the indictment read. Wahlberg approached Thanh Lam calling him a ‘Vietnamese f-king s-t’, then hit him on the head with the stick… the stick broke in half and was then retrieved from the scene.”

Mark Wahlberg and Reid Miller in "Joe Bell."
Mark Wahlberg and Reid Miller in “Joe Bell”.
© Roadside attractions / Courtesy Everett Collection

Wahlberg beat Lam until he passed out. He was arrested a few hours later.

“In the presence of two policemen,” the indictment reads, Wahlberg said: “You don’t have to let him identify me. I’ll tell you right away that it’s the mother-ker whose head I opened, or words to that effect.

It wasn’t Wahlberg’s only attack on a Vietnamese that night. Shortly after attacking Lam, Wahlberg hit a man named Hoa Trinh in the eye – an eye which, according to various reports, Trinh subsequently lost – although he later said he lost his eye in the service of the South Vietnamese army.

Back at the police station that night, Wahlberg kept denouncing “g-ks” and “g-ks with slant eyes.” He was charged with attempted murder and sentenced to two years for felony assault, but served only 45 days.

Fast forward to 1992: Wahlberg is now Marky Mark, a hip-hop star and a Calvin Klein model. Think money and fame could take over?

Nope. In another random, unprovoked attack, Marky Mark kicked a man in the head so hard – as a friend held the man down – that his broken jaw had to be closed.

Wahlberg settled with his victim in 1993, before the case went to trial.

“I did a lot of things that I regretted,” Wahlberg told ABC News in a 2006 track, “and I certainly paid for my mistakes.”

Of course, he paid off – financially.

“You have to go and ask for forgiveness,” he continued – although there is no evidence that he ever apologized to any of his many victims. “And it wasn’t until I really started doing good and doing good, with others as well as myself, that I really started to feel that guilt go away.”

Of course, people can change. They can learn, grow, and feel genuine sadness for those they have hurt, for their own behavior, and strive to do better.

In 2014, Wahlberg asked for pardon for the attacks on the two Vietnamese, stating in part: “I am deeply sorry for the actions I have taken … as well as for the lasting damage I may have caused to the victims,” ​​and that he has since “dedicated myself to becoming a better person and a better citizen”.

Still, Wahlberg withdrew the pardon request in 2016, after sparking public outrage. One victim, a child when attacked by Wahlberg, opposed the request, saying: “A racist will always be a racist.

Judith Beals, who continued some of the cases against Wahlberg, also said she was against it because “Wahlberg never admitted the racial nature of his crimes.”

Again, in my opinion, Wahlberg’s justification for withdrawing his request sounds a lot like someone not so sorry – blame everyone but yourself, only caring about yourself.

“I didn’t need that [pardon]”He said in 2016.” I spent 28 years righting the wrong. I didn’t need a piece of paper to recognize it. I was kind of pressured into doing it. I certainly didn’t need or want to relive these things again.

A scene from "Joe Bell."
In 1992, Mark Wahlberg kicked a man in the head so hard that his broken jaw had to be closed.
Mark Wahlberg and Reid Miller in “Joe Bell”.

Do any of Wahlberg’s behaviors described here, before or since, seem indicative of someone capable of guilt or remorse? Not to mention the hatred of blacks or immigrants or any other historically marginalized group?

“I have no problem sleeping at night,” Wahlberg said in this ABC article. “I feel good when I wake up in the morning.”

It’s quite the tidy end of Hollywood.

Let’s get back to Joe Bell’s real life: his cross-country walk came to an untimely end when he was run over by a semi-trailer while walking alongside US 40 in Colorado.

“When a child is being bullied there are usually a lot of witnesses,” Bell said before starting his walk. “Doing nothing is not acceptable. [Those who watch and do nothing] are equally guilty. They say it’s okay.

Truer words.


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